Monday, 17 November 2008

The start of the research commercialisation quandary - does the person who pay get to have, use and own the knowledge they pay for?

1987 OECD report on higher education.

pp. 58-62 External and industrial support for Research - that is, among OECD countries, research and industry are starting to have significant links in 1987 so that increasing numbers of universities are trying to build relationships with industry as a funding source. Some of these (p.59) are "inspired by national need a priorities" which is one way to put it.

"Science parks" are a way of having industry offices near university laboratories, especially re. silicon and DNA.

But for the reflective OECD report, this is cause for caution, if not alarm.

p.60: "The President of the German Professors' Association has warned that universities are in danger of being reduced to "useful servants", the political parties regarding them as machines "in which you put D100 and expect DM200 to come out the other end after six months"

"In Australia an important middle and long-term problem is posed by the nature if the contractual relationships into which universities enter. Quote from Australia's Country Report about universities with extensive contractual arrangements in biotechnology which give "the clients specified rights over the results" which has "raised issues concerning the role of universities and research, the ownership of research findings, and the responsibilities of university researchers to society and the traditions of independent scholarship"

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