Universities and Economic Development Activities: A UK Regional Comparison

Decter, M., Cave, F., Rose, M., Peers, G., Fogg, H. and Smith, Susan orcid iconORCID: 0000-0002-3152-2149 (2011) Universities and Economic Development Activities: A UK Regional Comparison. Industry and Higher Education, 25 (5). pp. 359-374. ISSN 0950-4222

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.5367/ihe.2011.0058


A number of UK universities prioritize economic development or regeneration activities and for some of these universities such activities are the main focus of their knowledge transfer work. This study compares two regions of the UK – the North West and the South East of England – which have very different levels of economic performance. Quantitative data from the UK government's Higher Education Business and Community Interaction Survey are used to track economic development funding and activity from universities in these two regions. Strategy documents prepared for the fourth round of the government's Higher Education Innovation Fund are analysed to aid interpretations. Elements of evolutionary theory are used to explore the reasons for the differences and a case study of one university programme, Leading Enterprise and Development, is provided as an illustrative example.

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