An Innovative Collaboration Between Industry, University and Nonprofit Agency for a Competitive Industry: a Swedish Case

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Author(s)A. Goienetxea Uriarte, M. Urenda Moris, M. Jägstam, A.L. Allert, L. Tööj, M. Karlsson
In a knowledge based economy, manufacturing industry has to continuously improve their operations,
processes and develop their employees in order to remain competitive in the market.
In this context, the collaboration between industry and universities becomes of vital importance.
Universities and industry have traditionally maintained fairly informal or lose ways of cooperation when
it comes to education. This article presents a fruitful cooperation which has been established between
the University of Skövde, the Industrial Development Center in the region, IDC West Sweden AB, and
the manufacturing industry.
The paper describes the development, lessons learned and the outcome of more than 3 years’
experience of close collaboration between the different stakeholders. It presents a methodology, used
by the consortium to help manufacturing industries to improve their competiveness using a well
defined process including: a company analysis, applied education and long-term coaching. A special
focus is put on a long-term commitment by all partners. This alliance has performed more than 140
company analysis, conducted applied education for more than 2500 employees from more than 120
companies and performed coaching of more than 80 companies on site. The trend is that these figures
will increase over time.
The established collaboration has been strengthened over this period of time by a number of shared
research projects. One of these projects involves an evaluation of the impact that this presented
consortium has had on the region´s industry. Lean Learning Academies is another project that has
been funded by the European Union within the Lifelong Learning Program, with the aim to increase
the competitiveness of European companies and enhance the employability of students.
CategoriesModernising PHE within diversified HE » LLA