From Health Crisis to an Innovation-led Recovery: What Role for Universities?

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On 2nd February, City-REDI held its first hybrid seminar with Tomas Ulrichsen, Director of the Policy Evidence Unit for University Commercialisation and Innovation (UCI) at the University of Cambridge.

You can watch the video from the event below. 
Health Crisis to an Innovation-Led Recovery

This seminar introduces the Research England-funded Policy Evidence Unit for University Commercialisation and Innovation (UCI) and explores findings from a recent UCI study examining how universities can mobilise their resources to contribute to the much-needed innovation-led recovery from health and socio-economic crises induced by the Covid-19 pandemic.

It will also present an emerging framework for capturing the innovation functions of universities that attempts to move us beyond a largely mechanistic approach to studying university-driven knowledge exchange, to one that captures the variety of contributions universities make within an innovation system. The framework was deployed in a series of empirical policy-focused studies between 2020-2022 to capture the effects of the pandemic on universities’ ability to contribute to innovation through the crisis period and the recovery. While not explicitly place-focused, the seminar will reflect on its implications for the study of the evolving place-based roles and contributions of universities.

These studies also gathered evidence on the key factors that influenced the ability of universities to respond to the pandemic. Drawing on this, the seminar will explore implications for policymakers and university leaders as they confront an increasingly turbulent world and ambitions to position universities as key actors in tackling major societal, industrial and technological challenges moving forward.

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