Spanning Boundaries

EURASHE is a partner in the Spanning Boundaries project.

Underneath are further information on:


Why Spanning Boundaries?

After the launch of the Europe 2020 strategy and the EU Growth Agenda, Europe has taken the path to create a more connected relationship between society, government, business and higher education institutions (HEIs) in order to increase employment, productivity and social cohesion. However, despite the strong policy support, cooperation among the key actors in Europe is still in the early stages of development, and their interaction remains insufficient. In that, the recent reports by EU Smart Specialisation Platform and JRC particularly emphasize the need for “boundary spanners” in the innovation ecosystem, individuals who have deep understanding of both business and academia. This capacity is increasingly deemed crucial among the university staff in the entrepreneurial discovery and smart specialisation processes of the HEIs, to support transfer and exchange of knowledge. The nature of the barriers that hinder regional engagement include “lack of ‘boundary spanning skills in the university” and “lack of leadership to drive change”.

How can Spanning Boundaries project bridge the gap between policy and practice?

  1. Identifying the qualities, and knowledge & skills set that describes HEI staff, faculty, and leadership as boundary spanners,
  2. Designing and pilot testing an experiential learning programme on the concept in collaboration with partner business representative organisations,
  3. Extending the reach of the programme to staff from the businesses, and
  4. Generating and disseminating replicable tools for HEIs and SMEs across Europe. This will be achieved with the experience and collaboration of a diverse group of 10 partners, made up of 4 HEIs, 3 SMEs, a chamber of commerce, a regional development agency, and a European wide network from 8 European countries.
Following are the partners/associate partners of the project:

  • Chamber of Commerce of Spain - The figure of the Chamber of Commerce was created by the Royal Decree of 9 April 1886, with the recognition of the existing associations of merchants, industrialists and shipbuilders. In 1993,... Read more
  • Crazy Town - Crazy Town builds entrepreneurial coworking communities that collaborate with universities. We have four locations in Finland with total of 200 company and organizational members. We bring together solopreneurs, micro-sized companies,... Read more
  • Institut Mines-Télécom Business School (IMTBS) - Institut Mines-Télécom Business School (IMTBS) is one of 13 graduate schools in the Institut Mines-Telecom, one of France’s major educational and research establishments. In addition to IMTBS, the Institute groups... Read more
  • Istanbul Technical University (ITU) - Founded in 1773, Istanbul Technical University (ITU) is a prominent and pioneering university of engineering and architecture with many innovative studies in science, technology, research and development. ITU, as a... Read more
  • Meath County Council (MCC) - Meath County Council (MCC) is a statutory body, tasked with delivering quality services to the communities of County Meath.  With a budget of over €50m and over 500 staff, MCC... Read more
  • Momentum - Momentum is one of Ireland’s leading innovation and entrepreneurship specialists, recognised as thought-leading strategists and educators in transformation through innovation.  Our work with HEIs, Government bodies and Regional Development Agencies,... Read more
  • Münster University of Applied Sciences - Münster University of Applied Sciences was founded on 1 August 1971 after the merger of public and private schools of construction and engineering and vocational training institutions. Back then, the... Read more
  • University Industry Innovation Network (UIIN) - The University Industry Innovation Network (UIIN) is a vibrant network of academics, practitioners and business professionals passionate about advancing university-industry interaction, entrepreneurial universities and collaborative innovation. UIIN’s 200+ members from more than 25 countries include Higher... Read more
  • University of Malaga (UMA) - The University of Malaga (UMA) is one of Spain’s premiere institutions of higher learning. Since its foundation back in 1972, UMA has rapidly expanded its international presence and prestige. Currently,... Read more
  • Meath County Council (MCC)

    Meath County Council (MCC) is a statutory body, tasked with delivering quality services to the communities of County Meath.  With a budget of over €50m and over 500 staff, MCC has been unrelenting in pursuing new ideas, policies, strategies and solutions in order to ensure improved efficiencies and cost savings are achieved.  The Council is committed to working with Community Groups, a wide range of statutory agencies and NGOs as well as constantly improving engagement with neighbouring authorities, as a means to achieving results beyond what could be achieved working alone.

    Momentum

    Momentum is one of Ireland’s leading innovation and entrepreneurship specialists, recognised as thought-leading strategists and educators in transformation through innovation.  Our work with HEIs, Government bodies and Regional Development Agencies, as advisors, strategic planners and applied innovation specialists yields new multi-actor, multidisciplinary collaboration structures that effect change.   We are recognised for our work in developing regional engagement programmes for HEI teams to catalyze a transformative approach to regional economy reactivation.

    Crazy Town

    Crazy Town builds entrepreneurial coworking communities that collaborate with universities. We have four locations in Finland with total of 200 company and organizational members. We bring together solopreneurs, micro-sized companies, startups and teams from larger organizations, who want to cooperate, learn new and grow their business together. Also universities and their UBC professionals are our members.

    Crazy Town has operated since 2004. During these years we have organized hundreds of projects related to university-business cooperation as a contractor, but also utilized all sorts of cooperation methods with universities to develop our own business. We truly believe that university-business-cooperation is a people’s game. In other words, it happens when people responsible for creating and delivering UBC have great boundary spanning skills. With the help of Spanning Boundaries project, we hope to increase this kind of capability throughout Finland and Europe. We also hope to connect our company members and Finnish universities with our European partners and networks.

    Istanbul Technical University (ITU)

    Founded in 1773, Istanbul Technical University (ITU) is a prominent and pioneering university of engineering and architecture with many innovative studies in science, technology, research and development. ITU, as a university mainly composed of graduate engineering schools and research laboratories, works closely in collaboration with enterprises and other economic and social partners. ITU facilitates the knowledge and technology transfer to industries, management centres, briefly to all society. To do this, İTÜ has created many Techno-Science parks, incubation centres, entrepreneurship and innovation centre and technology transfer office. Hence, ITU offers a favourable environment for commercialization of research as well as university-industry collaboration at all levels.

    University of Malaga (UMA)

    The University of Malaga (UMA) is one of Spain’s premiere institutions of higher learning. Since its foundation back in 1972, UMA has rapidly expanded its international presence and prestige. Currently, UMA has two campuses, more than 35.000 students, 2.400 professors, 23 faculties and schools, 82 departments, 200 educational programmes, about 200 Ph.D. thesis/year, 278 research groups, more than 400 projects and more than 1.800 business contacts.

    UMA is strongly committed to entrepreneurship and the creation of new companies. Those initiatives are quite spread along the university and are coordinated by the Vice Rectorate for Social Innovation and Entrepreneurship. Thanks to this activity, UMA is nowadays one key element of the regional entrepreneurial ecosystem, materialised in the centre Link by UMA-Atech.

    Link is a common space for universities and companies to arise creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship. It is a place where the university community has the chance to learn and experiment, while companies find out great professionals. The link works as a hub, a place that connects different actors from the innovation and entrepreneurship ecosystem. Participation of UMA and Link in projects such Boundary Spanners will help to enhance its role as an inno-mediator in the close environment and to expand its impact at the international level.

    Institut Mines-Télécom Business School (IMTBS)

    Institut Mines-Télécom Business School (IMTBS) is one of 13 graduate schools in the Institut Mines-Telecom, one of France’s major educational and research establishments. In addition to IMTBS, the Institute groups many of the country’s key engineering schools and plays a central role in developing both ground-breaking and applied research, innovation and education for engineers, managers, specialists and faculty. The schools of the Institute are acknowledged for their excellence at both national and international levels. Institut Mines-Telecom is both a major actor in the French research landscape and in European research programmes, accounting for 192 research contracts in FP7, for example.  The Institute combines strong academic legitimacy, close corporate relations and a unique focus on four key transformative fields of the 21st century: Digital Technologies, Energy, Ecology and Production.

    Münster University of Applied Sciences

    Münster University of Applied Sciences was founded on 1 August 1971 after the merger of public and private schools of construction and engineering and vocational training institutions. Back then, the student population was around 2,300; today, almost 14,000 young people are pursuing one of our 87 degree programmes, 38 of which are Master’s programmes – a high proportion compared to other universities of applied sciences. In addition, around 110 cooperative doctoral candidates are working towards a doctorate, supported by our Doctoral Studies Programme. Over the years, Münster University of Applied Sciences has evolved into a practice-oriented, international and interdisciplinary university of applied sciences. Teaching staff and students contribute equally to the successful transfer of scientific findings to practice. This pays off: our establishment is now one of Germany’s largest and most successful universities of applied sciences.

    University Industry Innovation Network (UIIN)

    The University Industry Innovation Network (UIIN) is a vibrant network of academics, practitioners and business professionals passionate about advancing university-industry interaction, entrepreneurial universities and collaborative innovation. UIIN’s 200+ members from more than 25 countries include Higher Education Institution managers (e.g. rectors, vice chancellors), intermediaries (e.g. technology transfer offices, mobility offices), researchers in various fields, business professionals (e.g. innovation managers or management) and policy makers.

    Chamber of Commerce of Spain

    The figure of the Chamber of Commerce was created by the Royal Decree of 9 April 1886, with the recognition of the existing associations of merchants, industrialists and shipbuilders. In 1993, the Spanish Parliament unanimously passed the Chamber of Commerce Act which confirmed them as organisations and defined them as public law corporations. The Act also recognised their importance as intermediary institutions in the representation, promotion and defence of the interests of merchants, industrialists and shipbuilders and as a consolidating force of the country’s economic fabric. Chambers of Commerce are the fruit of the interaction between the state and society and facilitate the participation of businesses in our country’s economic life. Spain has 88 Chambers of Commerce with more than 400 service points nation-wide.The Chamber network maintains a delegation in Brussels and since the year 2001 has been coordinating, along with the Secretary of State for Trade, the 37 Spanish Chambers of Commerce abroad.