Keywords: universities, local business, local entrepreneurship, entrepreneurial ecosystems, higher education, local communities, collaboration, innovation, employment
Bridging town and gown: best practice? An essay on growing the local entrepreneurial ecosystem
Dating back to the Middle Ages, universities and cities have co–existed awkwardly. Cities want to perceive universities as a resource; universities perceive their host cities as a support system for them. Yet this article suggests that the potential to be realised from genuine collaboration is enormous. Three potentially huge payoffs for both 'town' and 'gown' are identified: creating innovation; creating jobs; creating community. Eight key principles are identified and the issues raised are discussed. Questions for the community to ask the university and vice versa are outlined.