10778558470?profile=RESIZE_400xPartnerships between companies and universities are vital Innovation economy drivers.

Numerous businesses are shifting their attention in university and Innovation ecosystem interactions from incremental problem-solving to long-term improvement and careful engagement with emerging entrepreneurs.

This aids in preparing businesses and universities for more effective relationships and productive participation in the Innovation Ecosystem.

Considering the answers to 6 key questions aids the organizations in developing a strategic outlook on their partnerships.  To facilitate the process of answering these 6 questions, a tool called the University Partnership Canvas (UPC) has been designed, which enables managers to display the 6 questions visually.

These questions are very closely connected—when the answers to these questions align, they provide a cause for collaboration that has strategic depth and a greater likelihood of being successful.

The UPC offers a tool to assist managers in achieving their company objectives by reviewing their present strategic partnership techniques and systematically identifying differences.  The UPC may aid managers in outlining probable answers to any disagreements or problems.

Managers may also use the UPC to analyze the impact of shifting corporate objectives on their existing University Partnerships and, in light of this information, make adjustments as necessary.

UPC should not be used just as an internal evaluation and development tool for University Partnership.  It should be leveraged, additionally, in ongoing conversations with universities.

Corporations and universities may utilize UPC, in collaboration, to increase openness regarding the objectives, formats, KPIs, and organizational structures of a partnership being explored for development potential.

The UPC, which consists of the following 6 questions, is the product of a 4-year research effort on developing, maintaining, and enhancing the intrinsically complex university-industry collaborations.

  1. What business goals drive your University Partnerships?
  2. What are the key focus areas of your University Partnerships, and how are they selected to ensure alignment with your business goals?
  3. Who are your primary university partners, and by what criteria are they chosen?
  4. What collaboration formats match your focus areas and business goals?
  5. What people, processes, and organizational structures support your University Partnerships?
  6. What key performance indicators are most useful for evaluating your University Partnerships?


These 6 crucial questions, the responses to which assist in assessing the partnership's viability and potential for progress, can be divided into 3 groups:

The initial 2 questions deal with business objectives, i.e., the strategic objectives that University Partnerships should provide for the business.

The following 2 questions focus on the collaborators and cooperation structures, the "who" and "how." of the process.

Collectively, the initial 4 questions make the core of a methodical approach to University Partnerships.

The last 2 questions pertain to ensuring that the necessary individuals, procedures, organizational structures, and assessment tools are assigned for the collaboration to provide value for both the university and the company.

Interested in learning more about University Partnership Canvas (UPC)?  You can download an editable PowerPoint on University Partnership Canvas (UPC) here on the Flevy documents marketplace.

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