Strengthening industry-university collaborations: synchronising industrial opportunities with research capabilities using innovation roadmapping
The benefits of collaboration between universities and industry have been widely recognised, however, little practical guidance is provided as to how to establish successful strategic collaborations and support the different types of interactions between these two very different stakeholders. We have successfully adapted and used innovation roadmapping as a method to help these two heterogeneous partners to establish collaborations of common interest. The approach has been used twenty times to establish collaborations between firms and academia at various scales: a) the whole university, b) a large part of a university i.e. several departments, and c) specific academic groups. Feedback showed that roadmapping can be a powerful method for aligning the needs of the two communities, helping to identify common priorities and aiding communication and clarity in the collaboration activities. Overall, participants from both communities indicated that the method was simulating and provided new and useful insights.