This story about linkages between business and universities in Mexico, http://www.universityworldnews.com/article.php?story=20130110110144741, points to the weakness of current partnerships and the missed opportunities for both institutions. More importantly, as I’ve often cited here, there is increased demand from the private sector to strengthen skills of graduates to match the needs of business.
For one, university-business partnerships can help shape professional degree programmes so that graduates better meet the needs of businesses. He feels that if college graduates fail to bring the skill set to the workplace that the country needs, businesses will relocate to other countries. Partnerships can also help identify opportunities for further business development, and generate research-based knowledge and technologies that can help develop new businesses… Also, improved collaboration can contribute to the ongoing education of the workforce.
In a recent article from the David Rockefeller Center for Latin American Studies, Harvard’s Fernando Reimers wrote: “If universities are to transform themselves into engines of innovation, economic as well as social…They will need to proactively seek to shape the policy agenda…“They will also need to explicitly provide students opportunities to develop entrepreneurial skills and aptitudes…[and they will need] more fluid communication between universities and various industries and fields of practice.”
He concluded: “As in the past, aligning the university with a new social role will require extraordinary conditions, support and leadership.”