Energizing collaborative industry-academia learning : a present case and future visions
Kettunen, P., Järvinen, J., Mikkonen, T., & Männistö, T. (2022). Energizing collaborative industry-academia learning : a present case and future visions. European Journal of Futures Research, 10, Article 8. https://doi.org/10.1186/s40309-022-00196-5
Published inEuropean Journal of Futures Research
© 2022 the Authors
In Industry-Academia Collaborations (IAC) both academic, scientific research results and industrial practitioner findings and experiences are produced. Both types of knowledge should be gathered, codified, and disseminated efficiently and effectively. This paper investigates a recent (2014–2017) large-scale IAC R&D&I program case (Need for Speed, N4S) from a learning perspective. It was one of the programs in the Finnish SHOK (Strategic Centres of Science, Technology, and Innovation) system. The theoretical bases are in innovation management, knowledge management, and higher education (university) pedagogy. In the future, IAC projects should be more and more commonplace since major innovations are hardly ever done in isolation, not even by the largest companies. Both intra-organizational and inter-organizational learning networks are increasingly critical success factors. Collaborative learning capabilities will thus be required more often from all the participating parties. Efficient and effective knowledge creation and sharing are underpinning future core competencies. In this paper, we present and evaluate a collaboratively created and publicly shared digital knowledge repository called “Treasure Chest” produced during our case program. The starting point was a jointly created Strategic Research and Innovation Agenda (SRIA), which defined the main research themes and listed motivating research questions to begin with—i.e., intended learning outcomes (ILO). During the 4-year program, our collaborative industry-academia (I-A) learning process produced a range of theoretical and empirical results, which were iteratively collected and packaged into the Treasure Chest repository. Outstandingly, it contained, in addition to traditional research documents, narratives of the industrial learning experiences and more than 100 actionable knowledge items. In conclusion, our vision of the future is that such transparently shared, ambitious, and versatile outcome goals with a continuous integrative collection of the results are keys to effective networked I-A collaboration and learning. In that way, the N4S largely avoided the general problem of often conflicting motives between industrial firms seeking answers and applied solutions to their immediate practical problems and academic researchers aiming at more generalizable knowledge creation and high-quality scientific publications. ...
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