Innovation means pursuing radical new business opportunities, exploiting new or potentially disruptive technologies, and introducing change into the core concept of the company’s business. The higher education institutions (HEI) must accept three important roles within
this innovation development process at the regions of their activities:
1. The role of an innovation ideas creator.
2. The role of such ideas distributor and a coordinator of different subjects’ effort that focuses on promising innovation project easy implementation - the role of an innovation intermediary.
3. The role of an educator, the catalyst that spreads the knowledge necessary for innovation’s successful launch to the target market among the members of teams that co-operate within the process of creative idea transformation into cash.
During playing the role of innovation idea creator HEI must respect that companies can shop for innovation in various stages of development. Because an innovation is a business phenomenon, transferring the promising idea into commercially successful output means to develop a new business model - to change the company’s behavior.
Within the role of an intermediary HEI would be in a unique position to visualize new opportunities synthesized from insights and technologies provided by several companies - ideas that might never occur to companies working on innovation programs on their own.
To fulfill the role of an educator successfully, the HEI have to abandon an education model resembling filling the bottles from the lake of knowledge and sending them along the line of users who will drink from the bottle when needed. This obsolete model must be replaced by another model:
Give the potential users boats and compasses and let them paddle on the lake of knowledge to the needed sources themselves.
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