Effective knowledge dissemination from universities: an evaluation of technology transfer offices and the environments in which they operate

Jansen van Rensburg, Merten Secundus (2019-12)

Thesis (MEng)--Stellenbosch University, 2019.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Measures of the research that is generated by universities are commonly used to determine the subsidies that governments pay to universities. Universities can also develop research into technologies that can be sold to industry, in order to supplement the income from government subsidies and student fees. In some cases, researchers at universities have to make trade-off decisions regarding whether to focus on publishing the research (to possibly increase government subsidies) or to focus on research that can be sold to industry. Both of these foci may be legitimate ways of disseminating the research done at universities. The purpose of this study is to develop a framework that supports the evaluation of the knowledge dissemination determinants at universities, with a focus on university TTOs and the environments in which they operate. The framework identifies the concepts relevant to the operation of TTOs that affect knowledge dissemination. The concepts can be grouped into the themes of: (1) Goals of the University, (2) Intellectual Capital, (3) IPR, (4) Funding, (5) Incentives, (6) Info-Culture, (7) Info-Structure, (8) Infrastructure and finally (9) Dissemination. Two primary case studies, Stellenbosch University and KU Leuven, are conducted using the framework. Secondary case studies are selected to compare the primary case studies to. These secondary case studies include: (1) universities that are located in similar environments, and (2) universities that are similarly ranked, but operate in different environments. The aim is to identify factors and behaviours that increase the effectiveness of knowledge dissemination from universities in these different environments. This study thus makes two contributions. Firstly, it presents a framework that can be used to evaluate knowledge dissemination determinants from universities. Secondly, it uses this framework to identify various patterns of these determinants and the observed performance related to these determinants in various cases. This adds to the growing literature exploring the determinants of the knowledge dissemination related performance of university.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Navorsing wat deur die universiteit gedoen word,is een van die groot elemente wat die subsidies bepaal wat van die regering toegeken word. Universiteite is ook in ’n posisie om met navorsing verder waarde toe te voeg, en te ontwikkel in tegnologie. Dit kan dan die universiteit se inkomste aanvul wat andersins van die regering of uit studente klasgeld uit moes kom. In sekere gevalle kan navorsers by universiteite onderhandel/ besluit om te fokus op publisering van navorsing (wat regering subsidies sal verhoog) of om navorsing na tegnologie te ontwikkel (wat weer in die industrie wins tot gevolg kan hê). Beide hierdie fokuspunte is baie geldige maniere om die verspreiding van navorsing wat by universiteite gedoen word te ontgin. Die doel van hierdie studie is om die faktore te bepaal wat die keuses tussen suiwer navorsing of toepassings in tegnologie vir industrie beïnvloed, asook die effektiewe verspreiding van hierdie kennis aan universiteite oor die algemeen, gegewe die verskillende beleidsrigtings. Die doel van hierdie studie is om ’n raamwerk te ontwikkel waarin kennisoordrag aan universiteite evalueer kan word, met die uitsluitlike fokus op Tegnologie Oordrags Kantore (TOK) en die omgewing waarin die universiteit werk. Die konsepte wat gebruik word vir die studie is as volg: (1) Doel van die Universiteite, (2) Intellektuelle kapitaal, (3) Intellektuele eiendoms regte, (4) Befonsing, (5) Annmoediginskemas, (6) Inligtingstruktuur en, laastens, (9) Verspreiding van Kennis. Universiteit van Stellenbosch en KU Leuven was die twee prim êre gevallestudies wat gemeet is aan hierdie raamwerk. Sekondêre gevallestudies is gedoen om univesiteite te vergelyk wat (1) in dieselfde omgewing gelee is en (2) universiteite wat dieselfde rangorde het maar in uiteenlopende omgewings funksioneer. Die doel hiervan was om faktore en handelings te identifiseer wat die effektiwiteit van kennisverspreiding verhoog in die verkillende omgewings. Die studie maak twee bydraes. Eerstens, vertoon dit ’n raamwerk wat kan gebruik word om die kenis oordrag determinante van universiteite te evalueer. Tweedens, kan die raamwerk gebruik word om verskillende patrone van hierdie determinante, en die waargeneemde optrede in verband met die determinante in die verskillende gevalle. Die vroeg by tot die groeiende literatuur wat die determinante van die verhouding tussen kennis oordrag en die optrede van die universiteite verken.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/107106
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