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Centre for Business Research (CBR) news from 2009


22,000 academics speak: results from the largest survey of academics

20 October 2009

On 20 October 2009 the UK Innovation Research Centre (UK~IRC) launched the results of the latest CBR research on how British academics interact with businesses and other sectors of the economy at NESTA. The results are from the largest survey of academics undertaken in the UK – with over 20,000 respondents.

The research reveals:

  • that although there is significant interaction between the science base and business, there are also significant ‘hidden’ interactions encompassing a range of other academic disciplines;
  • that links between business and academia are not just about ‘technology transfer’ but involve a broader process that is best encapsulated as ‘knowledge exchange’;
  • that very few academics are involved with creating spin-outs, licenses or patents, instead the most frequent forms of knowledge exchange involve informal advice, joint publications, consultancy and a wide range of people based activities (such as involvement in networks and employee training);
  • that there are significant interactions involving the third and public sectors.

The research presented by Professor Alan Hughes and Mr Michael Kitson is based on a research project (RES-171-25-0018) carried out with their colleagues Maria Abreu and Vadim Grinevich at the CBR. The project is part of the Impact of HEIs on Regional Economies Initiative supported by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) in partnership with the Scottish Funding Council (SFC), Department for Employment and Learning (DEL) in Northern Ireland, the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) and the Higher Education Funding Council for Wales (HEFCW).

ECGI Prize for CBR research

20 April 2009

Congratulations to John Armour, Simon Deakin, Prabirjit Sarkar, Mathias Siems and Ajit Singh for the award of the Best Law Working Paper Prize of the European Corporate Governance Institute. The prize for their paper on “Shareholder protection and stock market development: an empirical test of the legal origins hypothesis” was awarded at the Annual Meeting of the Institute in Paris on 16 April.

Find out more

Visit the Centre for Business Research (CBR) website to learn more about the project “Law, Finance and Development”

National capitalisms, global production networks: fashioning the value chain in the UK, USA, and Germany

30 March 2009

Firms in the clothing industry engage in global sourcing and operate in global markets. A new book by Christel Lane and Jocelyn Probert, entitled National Capitalisms, Global Production Networks: Fashioning the Value Chain in the UK, USA, and Germany, analyses the way British, American, and German firms in the clothing industry co-ordinate and govern their global production networks/ value chains. Using over 100 interviews in six countries on three continents, it follows the value chain from development to developing countries and studies in many issues which confront students of globalisation.

Find out more

Visit the Oxford University Press website to learn more about the book

Comparative entrepreneurship: the UK, Japan, and the shadow of Silicon Valley

29 March 2009

Are entrepreneurs essentially the same everywhere? Are the processes of entrepreneurship similar? Or are they shaped by their environments? If so, how?

Comparative Entrepreneurship – The UK, Japan, and the Shadow of Silicon Valley, by D. Hugh Whittaker (with Philippe Byosiere, Shigeo Momose, Tadashi Morishita, Thelma Quince and Junpe Higuchi), brings insights from entrepreneurship to comparative institutions and varieties of capitalism, and vice versa, and draws on two surveys and 25 case interviews in both the UK and Japan. It concludes with a discussion of dilemmas for entrepreneurship policy in the UK, Japan, and other countries.

Find out more

Visit the Oxford University Press website to learn more about the book

‘Third-stream’ funding of research and innovation

3 March 2009

The research for HEFCE on Third Stream funding by Alan Hughes, Tomas Ulrichsen and Barry Moore has led to the simultaneous publication by HEFCE and CBR of several reports which have been fed directly into UK senior policy discussions at BIS and HEFCE.

Launch of the UK Innovation Research Centre (UK~IRC)

4 March 2009

On Wednesday 4 March 2009 NESTA hosted an event to introduce the work of the new UK Innovation Research Centre (UK~IRC). First announced in the Innovation Nation White Paper in March 2008, the Innovation Research Centre is a new £3 million initiative for cutting-edge research and knowledge hub activity in innovation. It is a joint venture between the Centre for Business Research at the University of Cambridge Judge Business School, and Imperial College London Business School. The Centre is funded by the Department for Innovation Universities and Skills (DIUS), the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), the National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts (NESTA) and the Technology Strategy Board (TSB).

As part of the launch of the UK~IRC, the Centre for Business Research (CBR) presented the latest findings from its long-running surveys of SMEs. The latest survey for 2008 produced new findings about how SMEs are coping with the credit crunch and recession. The CBR’s Professor Alan Hughes and Dr Andy Cosh made comparisons with earlier periods and, in particular, 2004 and the recession of the early 1990s. They also examined which types of firm have been most affected and the consequences for R&D, capital expenditure and training, and SME policy.

New research centre to give UK the innovation advantage

The Centre for Business Research at the University of Cambridge Judge Business School and Imperial College Business School are setting up a new collaborative venture – the UK Innovation Research Centre (UK~IRC). The Centre will receive £2.8 million over the next five years to carry out the highest quality research into how innovation can make businesses more competitive, improve public services delivery and help the UK meet the social, environmental and economic challenges it faces.

The Centre is being set up in response to The Government’s ‘Innovation Nation’ White Paper (March 2008) and jointly funded by four partners: the Economic and Social Research Council; the Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills; the National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts; and the Technology Strategy Board.

Professor Alan Hughes, director of the UK Innovation Research Centre and director of the Centre for Business Research, explains the context for the initiative:

Innovation is much more broadly defined than it used to be. It’s not just about successfully introducing new products; innovation in services, processes, even in business models and ways of working is increasingly important. We need new research so that both practitioners and policymakers can understand the key issues in all these forms of innovation – particularly when current global economic conditions make it more important than ever to ensure that the UK’s innovative capacity is enhanced.