Build up the business assets if you want to get ahead

Experience of knowledge transfer and links with business have become increasingly important to academics trying to win promotion, according to a new survey.

August 25, 2011

In a poll of 103 knowledge-transfer officers at higher education institutions across the UK, just over two-thirds say that links with business are more important now than they were five years ago to those seeking to rise through the ranks.

Philip Graham, executive director of the Association for University Research and Industry Links (Auril), which commissioned the survey, said this was a positive development, but argued that there was more to be done.

"In some job applications, (knowledge transfer) is now rated as desirable, although not essential. Ten years ago it would not have been rated as desirable," he said.

"With impact statements required by the research excellence framework and some research councils, people need to take account of the fact that their research has to have a benefit to society."

Nonetheless, the majority of those questioned by Auril still think links with business are less important than academics' teaching and research reputations.

More than 80 per cent of respondents say that promotion depends more on research reputation than business links, and 55 per cent think the same about teaching reputation.

The government's White Paper on higher education, published in June, says that universities should "look again at how they work with business".

The apparent lack of consistency across the sector was reflected in the comments to Auril.

One respondent says that business income is now a "critical component of success" for institutions: "As universities diversify revenues, industry relations must come to play a greater role in reputation."

However, another says: "I have been trying to get (industry links) included in the promotion procedure and in job descriptions for years, but still without success."

david.matthews@tsleducation.com.

You've reached your article limit.

Register to continue

Registration is free and only takes a moment. Once registered you can read a total of 3 articles each month, plus:

  • Sign up for the editor's highlights
  • Receive World University Rankings news first
  • Get job alerts, shortlist jobs and save job searches
  • Participate in reader discussions and post comments
Register

Have your say

Log in or register to post comments

Featured Jobs

Most Commented

Monster behind man at desk

Despite all that’s been done to improve doctoral study, horror stories keep coming. Here three students relate PhD nightmares while two academics advise on how to ensure a successful supervision

celebrate, cheer, tef results

Emilie Murphy calls on those who challenged the teaching excellence framework methodology in the past to stop sharing their university ratings with pride

Sir Christopher Snowden, former Universities UK president, attacks ratings in wake of Southampton’s bronze award

Reflection of man in cracked mirror

To defend the values of reason from political attack we need to be more discriminating about the claims made in its name, says John Hendry

But the highest value UK spin-off companies mainly come from research-intensive universities, latest figures show