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  • 1. University’s role in supporting innovation & entrepreneurship: Lessons from National University of Singapore (NUS) Professor Wong Poh Kam NUS Business School & LKY School of Public Policy Director, NUS Entrepreneurship Centre
  • 2. University’s role in supporting Innovation & Entrepreneurship
    • The open nature of the university model for knowledge production & exchange
      • Open Culture of Scientific Commons vs. Proprietary IP system for technology commercialization in private firms
      • High flow of talents (students but increasingly professors as well) in university model vs. moderate churn in firms
      • Spatial proximity of, & porosity of boundary between diverse disciplinary fields, facilitating cross-disciplinary research
    • Increasing adoption of “Third Mission”
      • Adapting the traditional university model to incorporate a technology commercialization role in addition to the traditional roles of teaching & research
  • 3. “ Third Mission” Challenges: Integration of open science model with technology commercialization & academic entrepreneurship role
      • Incorporation of technology commercialization role as an integral part of the university’s mission without sacrificing the push for excellence in basic science
      • Balancing “Pasteur Quadrant” (Use-inspired basic research) & shorter-term applied research
      • Implementing proprietary IP commercialization management while maintaining culture of open science
      • While R&D collaboration with, & licensing of technology to, industry represents the key mechanism for open innovation by university in advanced economies, in the context of NIEs where existing high tech industry is weak, commercialization through entrepreneurial spin-offs may be even more important
      • Changing mindset of faculty and students
  • 4. University role in supporting Innovation & Entrepreneurship
    • Lessons from the experience of National University of Singapore (NUS) in seeking to become a driver knowledge-economy development by fostering industry linkages and entrepreneurial spin-offs
    • Lessons from other Asian universities based on a recently completed 2-year comparative study of university technology commercialization and academic entrepreneurship involving 11 leading Asian universities
  • 5. Comparative R&D Indicators, Selected OECD/Asian Economies Source : NSF Science & Engineering Indicators 2008, OECD Main Science & Technology Indicators 2008, national sources
  • 6. Changing Role of NUS in Singapore’s shift towards a knowledge-based economy
    • Until the mid-1990s, NUS, as the oldest and leading university in Singapore, has emphasized the traditional twin academic missions of providing excellent education to the nation’s population, and contributing to the creation of new knowledge through engagement in R&D activities geared primarily towards scientific publications
    • Since then, NUS has not only continued to pursue excellence in these twin academic missions, but has moved decisively towards adopting a Third Mission by implementing an entrepreneurial university model
  • 7. Ranking of NUS in the World University Rankings by the Times Higher Education Supplement, 2004-08 Ranked 30th in the 2008 Times Higher Education Supplement of top 200 universities in the World
  • 8. New Roles of NUS in the Context of Singapore’s Shift towards Knowledge Economy
    • Contribute to the Creation of New Knowledge-based Industries
    • To support knowledge-based economic growth through the creation of industrially-relevant knowledge/innovation and their commercialization, and to attract global MNCs in new emerging industries
    • Attraction of Foreign Talents
      • Go beyond education for the local population to compete for global talents by attracting top students and faculty from overseas, as is done by top universities in USA
    • Fostering Entrepreneurial Mindset
      • In the past, high economic growth has provided NUS graduates with good career prospects as salaried employees, particularly in MNC subsidiaries and government
      • In the future knowledge economy, stable job opportunities no longer guaranteed, need to inculcate spirit of enterprise
  • 9. Key Changes in NUS, Before and After Shift to Entrepreneurial University Model
  • 10. Comparisons of NUS vs. Selected Leading Universities – Patents granted by USPTO n.a. 7 98 97 Imperial College 2005 Cumulative 1976 to 2005 40 26 67 182 National Univ. of Singapore 41 4 127 35 Cambridge University 34 9 97 98 Oxford University 43 43 22 510 Georgia Tech 35 35 31 413 University of Southern California 37 37 14 718 University of Pennsylvania 109 100 4 1541 Stanford University 63 65 10 545 University of Illinois 93 133 2 2825 MIT 265 310 1 5615 University of California # of licensing # of patents Rank among world’s universities # of patents Name of Institution
  • 11. NUS Publications and Citations 1996 vs 2006 Note: Includes SCI- and SSCI-indexed articles only 1 Using citation data up to 7 August 2008 Source: Thomson ISI Web of Science
      • The new emphasis on Technology Commercialization has NOT been at the expense of pursuit of Research Excellence:
      • NUS’ annual journal article output increased almost 3-fold between 1996 and 2006
      • Research quantity (publications per faculty member) and quality (citations received per faculty member and per paper) has also increased over this time
      • NUS journal articles tend to be more highly cited than the average Singapore journal article
  • 12. Academic Entrepreneurship: Number of NUS Spin-offs, 1980-2006
    • NUS’ change in policy to encouraging technology commercialization through spin-off and start-up formation after 2000 has facilitated an increased rate of spin-off formation
    • Average number of spin-offs based on NUS IP increased from less than 1 per year before 2000 to 5 per year after 2000
    • More than 60 start-ups by NUS professors, students and alumni received seed-funding and incubation/mentoring services from NUS Entrepreneurship Centre since 2000, > 10 have received follow-on investments by external investors
  • 13. Lessons from NUS’ experience
    • Set Appropriate Strategic Vision
    • Strong & Sustained Commitment by Top Leadership
    • Introduce new organizational mechanisms to support change
    • Recruit the right people to lead the change
    • Study global best practice, but innovate one’s own approach based on own unique context; learn and adapt over time
    • Build strategic international linkages
  • 14. New Vision of NUS in the 21 st Century: Towards a Global Knowledge Enterprise A leading global university centerd in Asia, influencing the future
    • To become a globally-oriented university, in the distinguished league of the world’s leading universities
    • To become a bold and dynamic community, with a “no walls” culture and a spirit of enterprise which strives for positive influence and impact through our education, research and service
    • To be a key node in the global knowledge network, with distinctive expertise and insights relating to Asia
  • 15. NUS’ Envisioned Role in Singapore’s High Technology Economy Venture capital /angel investors & other venture professionals attracted to work with University High tech ventures created or facilitated by University World-class R&D investments attracted to collaborate with University Top talents (researchers, students) attracted to work & study in University Talented graduates with entrepreneurial mindsets NUS as Global Knowledge Enterprise
  • 16. Introduce New Organization Mechanisms to implement Change
    • Corporatization of NUS to give it greater autonomy & flexibility
    • Creation of a new Organizational Division – NUS Enterprise
      • Broad mission to inject a more entrepreneurial dimension to NUS education and research
      • Holistic approach to promoting innovation and entrepreneurship
      • CEO reports directly to president
      • Budget initially pegged as a fixed % of overall university budget, growth in future years to be achieved by its own revenue/fund raising
    • Establishment of new International Collaborative R&D mechanisms with leading universities and industry partners around the world
      • Inviting foreign universities & MNCs to establish joint research lab within NUS campus (e.g. CREATE)
      • Building a global network of entrepreneurship education & start-up hubs
  • 17. Recruiting the Right People to lead change
    • Appoint change leaders who understand both academia and industry
      • Appointed as first CEO an engineering school professor who had founded a spin-off to commercialize his inventions
      • Second CEO is a veteran venture capitalist with prior academic research, start-up and government experience
      • Director of NUS Entrepreneurship Centre is an academic with entrepreneurial and angel investing experience
    • Extensive tapping of people with industry experience, both in Singapore and internationally
      • Advisory Committee comprising entrepreneurs, investors and senior business leaders
      • Use of investors and entrepreneurs as adjunct lecturers
      • Network of Mentors drawn from venture investment & entrepreneurial community, both in Singapore and Overseas
  • 18. Integrated, Holistic Ecosystem Approach Experiential Education
    • NOC / i LEAD:
    • Immerse NUS students in leading entrepreneurial and academic hubs around the world with the aim of nurturing tomorrow’s global entrepreneurs.
      • work & study in new environment & culture
      • 1 st hand insights into the mechanisms of a start-up
      • study in a prestigious overseas university
      • network with renowned entrepreneurs
    Industry Engagement & Partnerships
    • ILO
    • Promote the transfer of University-generated knowledge and technology to industry.
      • Protect, manage & commercialise IPs
      • industry connection & partnerships
      • pro-actively engage faculty and R&D cluster
    Entrepreneurship Support
    • NEC
    • Providing entrepreneurial support by providing the ‘software’ (people, knowledge, nurturing) and ‘hardware’ (incubator space, network, funding).
      • Mentoring & nurturing
      • Incubator &venture support
      • Networking & outreach
      • pro-actively develop spin-offs
      • Monitor and benchmark through research on entrepreneurship
    Continuing Education - NEX Pipelines
  • 19. NUS Enterprise Incubator: A holistic ecosystem approach
    • Outputs
    • - Collaborations (Industry)
    • Licenses
    • Spin-offs
    • Funding & Infrastructure
    • Use university seed fund to leverage co-funding from government agencies (NRF, SPRING, MDA, IDA)
    • Infrastructural support like NUS R&D labs, IP advisory, legal/accounting services
    • Generation of Pipelines
    • Ideas/projects pipeline from NOC/ILO/NUS community
    • Partnerships with IHLs, Polys, RIs and overseas counterparts.
    • Start-Up@Singapore competitions
    • Technology Scouts
    • Expertise & Management
    • Incubator Managers
    • Mentor Network (Global & Local)
    • Capability Development & Training (e.g. Marketing)
    • Entrepreneurs-in-Residence
    • Physical Incubators
    • University-wide
    • Faculty-based
    • Overseas launching pads
    Priority technology focus synergized with strategic sectors being promoted at the national level NUS Enterprise Incubation
  • 20. Learn from the Best, but Pioneer One’s Own Approach based on one’s unique circumstances
    • Global Experiential Entrepreneurship Learning: NUS Overseas College (NOC) Program
    • The Singapore-MIT Alliance Program
    • The CREATE Initiative
    • The RCE Initiative
  • 21. Infusing Entrepreneurial & Global Mindset: The NUS Overseas College initiative
    • Initiated in 2001, program aims to send 200 NUS undergraduate students per year to five high tech entrepreneurial hubs in the world; 180 in 2008
    • Experiential Education: “Learning by immersion” Model
      • Work as interns in high-tech start-ups in host region for one year Take entrepreneurship courses in partner universities in host region
      • Return to NUS to complete their final semester/year
      • Infuse entrepreneurial, global mindset
      • Influence future career choices towards entrepreneurial and innovative pursuits
      • Establish social networks with overseas entrepreneurial communities to facilitate future collaboration
      • Serve as catalyst for mindset change among their peers in NUS when they return
  • 22. (2002) NUS College in Silicon Valley, USA Study at Stanford & work in the innovation “habitat” ≈ (2003) NUS College in Bio Valley, USA Study at UPenn & work in the US’ pharma hotbed ≈ (2004) NUS College in Shanghai, China Study at Fudan & work in China’s commercial hub ≈ (2005) NUS College in Stockholm, Europe Study at KTH/SSE & work in Europe’s No.1 IT hub ≈ (2008) NUS College in Bangalore, India Study at IISc & work in India’s high-tech hub ≈ (2008) iLEAD, Singapore Study in NUS & work in Singapore’s knowledge- intensive enterprises ≈ (2009) NUS College in Beijing, China Study at Tsinghua & work in China’s high-tech hub Experiential Entrepreneurial Education
  • 23. i LEAD ( innovative Local Enterprise Achiever Development)
    • Launched in 2008, the program offers students
    • opportunity to intern at innovative local
    • companies and be exposed to the
    • entrepreneurial challenges in Singapore.
    • Aims to:
    • Cultivate entrepreneurial mindset
    • Develop leadership and management skills
    • Gain insight into the working of the business world
    • Provide opportunities to learn from entrepreneurial leaders
    • Two-week overseas study mission to Silicon Valley at the end of attachment
  • 24. Building Global Educational Links: The Singapore-MIT Alliance Program
    • Established in 1998, the Singapore-MIT Alliance (SMA) is an innovative engineering and life science educational and research collaboration involving the National University of Singapore (NUS), the Nanyang Technological University (NTU), and MIT, with students recruited globally
    • The program is intended to combine a focus on creativity and entrepreneurship with an intense, hands-on approach to research, leveraging on MIT’s experience in developing industrial collaboration and fostering innovation and entrepreneurship among its students. All students will reside a minimum of one semester at MIT. In Singapore, they will attend “live” MIT classes and take part in research meetings with MIT faculty, staff and students through video-conferencing
    • The success of the first phase of the program, where the degree is granted by NUS solely, to the establishment of a second phase, where the degree is granted jointly by NUS and MIT
  • 25. Building Global R&D Links: The International Campus for Research Excellence and Technological Enterpise (CREATE) Initiative
    • Recognizing the importance of building strong linkages with global institutions to enhance Singapore’s connectivity to other centres of research in US and Europe, and accelerate Singapore’s thrusts towards an innovative and entrepreneurial economy, the Research, Innovation and Enterprise Council (RIEC) (chaired by the Prime Minister) initiated in 2006 the International Campus for Research Excellence and Technological Enterprise (CREATE) Program
    • The Singapore MIT Alliance for Research and Technology (SMART) Centre was established in NUS as the first CREATE program. SMART houses joint, inter-disciplinary research between NUS and MIT professors. The first project focuses on infectious diseases & environmental sensing.
    • A second CREATE with European partners is being finalized with ETH (Switzerland), and a third with Technion University, Israel
  • 26. Building Nodes of Global Excellence: The Research Centre of Excellence (RCE) Initiative
    • Recognizing the need for Singapore to build “peaks of global excellence” in selected fields of knowledge in order for Singapore to become a truly integral node in the global innovation network, the National Research Foundation (NRF) and the Singapore Ministry of Education (MOE) have committed to fund a number of new Research Centre of Excellence (RCEs) in Singapore.
    • NUS has so far successfully won the bid to establish three of the four RCEs in Singapore
    • the Centre for Quantum Technologies (CQT)
    • The Cancer Science Institute of Singapore (CSIS)
    • The Mechanobiology Research Centre
  • 27. NUS International Collaborative Innovation Initiatives – Environmental & Water Technologies
    • GE-NUS partnership on Water & Process Technologies
      • MOU signed in September 2006, GE Water to invest SGD 130 million over 10 years to establish a Global R&D Centre on Water & Process Technologies hosted at NUS School of Engineering
      • Focus on Water Quality and Water Scarcity, aligned with Singapore’s Global Hydrohub vision
    • Singapore-Delft Water Alliance (SDWA)
      • Research collaboration launched in February 2007 between NUS, Delft Hydraulics (Netherlands) and the Public Utilities Board (PUB)
      • Funding of SGD 64 million over 3 years, with support from the Environment and Water Industry Development Council (EWI) of the NRF
      • Hosted at NUS School of Engineering, aims to advance S&T in water sector through demand-driven research, post-graduate and professional education and specialised consultancy services.; Operations were kick-started with four research programs, involving 70 researchers from NUS, Delft University of Technology and Delft Hydraulics
  • 28. NUS International Collaborative Innovation Initiatives – Environmental & Water Technologies (cont’d)
    • NUS Environmental Research Institute (NERI)
      • Established in early 2007, with university funding of SGD 12 million over 3 years
      • Adopts a research cluster approach, accommodating cross-disciplinary research areas and faculty-focused research units in 3 focus Areas: (i) Air, land & water systems; (ii) Human & environmental health; (iii) Energy systems
    • Solar Energy Research Institute of Singapore (SERIS)
      • Established in February 2008 by NUS in partnership with the Clean Energy Program Office (CEPO), with expected investment of SGD130 million over 5 yr
      • Aims to be a world-class solar R&D centre positioned optimally between university science and industry, and to groom pool of solar energy specialists
      • Focus on 3 key research areas: (i) silicon-based solar cells; (ii) novel photovoltaic (PV) devices and materials; (iii) “Solar and Energy-efficient Buildings”
      • Emphasis on active collaborate on research and education programs with outstanding scientists and research centres to build homegrown capabilities, starting with 25 researchers and expected to growth to 90 researchers in 5 years. Additionally, expect to produce up to 50 PhD and 20 Masters students in 5 years
  • 29. NUS International Collaborative Innovation Initiatives – Biomedical Sciences
    • NUS-Duke Graduate Medical School Singapore (GMS)
      • Established in 2005 as Singapore’s second medical school
      • Research-intensive curriculum based on Duke University model of medical education to develop clinician-scientists to engage in translational research
    • Cancer Science Institute of Singapore (CSIS)
      • Announced in March 2008 by NRF and the Ministry of Education (MOE) with SGD 172 mil funding over 7 years
      • Offers opportunity for team of eminent international faculty to work with NUS faculty on cancer research, expects to train 100 graduate students and 70 postdoctoral fellows
      • Specialty programs will include Cancer Stem Cell Programme, Cancer Biology Programme, Genomic Oncology Programme and Experimental Therapeutics Programme
    • NUS Clinical Research Collaboration with RIKEN, Japan
      • Collaboration between doctors and researchers from NUS, NUH and RIKEN (Japan’s oldest and most established research institution), commenced in 2007, to develop and validate a molecular diagnostic test for personalised therapy for lung cancer patients
  • 30. NUS International Collaborative Innovation Initiatives – Interactive Digital Media
    • Interactive and Digital Media Institute (IDMI)
      • Launched in April 2007 with seed funding of SGD 11 million over 3 years, as Singapore’s first inter-disciplinary research institute in IDM.
      • Undertakes application-inspired basic research in IDM, trains graduate students from Singapore and Asia, and transfer intellectual and human capital
      • Comprises eight laboratories in mixed reality, sociable robotics, games, ambient intelligence, multimedia sensing, cognitive and social studies, arts & creativity, and multimodal analysis.
    • NUS Hollywood Lab
      • Opened in July 2006 in Los Angeles to foster international R&D collaboration in IDM with major Hollywood studios, universities and entertainment companies in North America, and to promote student exchange and visiting professor programmes, and joint business ventures between Singapore and USA
    • Keio-NUS CUTE Centre ( C onnective U biquitous T echnology for E mbodiments)
      • Jointly set up between Keio University and NUS in 2008 to support collaborative R&D in IDM in Singapore, w ill involve more than 50 researchers from Japan and Singapore, focusing on pervasive content for wearable and body media
  • 31. Lessons from other Leading Asian Universities
    • Comparative study of leading Asian universities (Tokyo University, Tohoku University, Kyushu University, Tsinghua University, National Taiwan University, Hong Kong University of Science & Technology, KAIST, IIT Mumbai and IIT Madras, Multimedia Universiti Malaysia, Mahidol University Thailand)
    • Overall, trend of increasing emphasis on technology commercialization & academic entrepreneurship by all the universities
    • But some diversity of approaches adopted due to differences in national contexts & stages of development
    • Influence of top-down government policy evident in several economies
    • Except for the Japanese universities, relatively higher emphasis on spin-offs than industrial licensing vs. the advanced economies
    • Perceived lack of interest by researchers and lack of understanding of industry were biggest barriers to technology commercialization