Global minds think alike: companies are doing research abroad, while foreign IHEs are attracting more and more students. How can U.S. research universities remain competitive?
RESEARCH INSTITUTION leaders who keep on thinking that any company is dying to spend its research dollars on their institution just might wind up in the dog house (or somewhere close to it). Or at least that's what one university president believes.
Today, a U.S. research university has to contend with distinguished IHEs abroad that have qualified students and lower costs of conducting research and developing innovative products. This, in turn, has driven companies to venture abroad for research talent. It has even spurned spurn
v. spurned, spurn·ing, spurns
1. To reject disdainfully or contemptuously; scorn. See Synonyms at refuse1.
2. To kick at or tread on disdainfully.
v. some foreign companies that do their own R&D.
This raises the question: How can U.S. research universities remain competitive in a world where foreign IHEs and governments can be just as innovative and attract companies to fund research? The answer lies in a talk President G. Wayne Clough Gerald Wayne Clough is the current president of the Georgia Institute of Technology, a position he has held since September of 1994. He is notable for being the first alumnus to hold that position. Biography
Dr. of Georgia Institute of Technology Georgia Institute of Technology, in Atlanta, Ga.; coeducational; state supported; chartered 1885, opened 1888. It is a member school in the university system of Georgia. Significant among its facilities and programs are the Frank H. gave at July's annual meeting of the National Association of College and University Business Officers in Baltimore, Md.
"The new frontiers are in the realm of ideas, a space that universities should help to lead," he said. Clough thinks interdisciplinary collaboration is at the "heart of innovation."
According to according to
1. As stated or indicated by; on the authority of: according to historians.
2. In keeping with: according to instructions.
3. a Council of Graduate Schools study, between 2003 and 2004, U.S. grad schools experienced a 28 percent decline in international student applications. Meanwhile, only six out of the world's 25 most competitive IT companies are headquartered in the U.S., Clough noted. This is a double-edged sword for American research institutions, which have played a large role in America's rise as technological innovator.
Clough explained that major universities had always thought of themselves in international terms, "but in the past our position allowed us to dictate the terms of play. We were able to pick and choose from the best of a long list of international-student applications, and we knew that our corporate partners were largely confined to U.S. universities for first-rate research."
Now, corporate partners are going overseas more. "We are a victim of our success; We developed a series of protocols as we succeeded," he noted. Every time something new was invented in partnership with a company, a university would make sure to get the most bang for its buck by restricting what the company could do with the invention and how it could profit from it.
To account for this sea change in corporate partnerships, Georgia Tech set up a French satellite campus, Georgia Tech Lorraine Georgia Tech Lorraine (GTL) is a campus of the Georgia Institute of Technology in Metz, France, and as such plays a pivotal role in Georgia Tech's International Plan. Courses there are taught in English, with a few exceptions. , 13 years ago; it even receives funding for research from the French government.
Besides Georgia Tech, other major institutions have either set up degree programs or campuses in foreign countries, or created joint-degree programs with foreign institutions. (See box, "Spanning the Globe.")
Global Minds Think Alike
But, as a recent Wall Street Journal article (in Bid to Globalize glob·al·ize
tr.v. glob·al·ized, glob·al·iz·ing, glob·al·iz·es
To make global or worldwide in scope or application.
glob , U.S. Colleges Offer Degrees in Asia, July 12, 2005) states, some Asian governments facing "a massive gap between demand for higher education higher education
Study beyond the level of secondary education. Institutions of higher education include not only colleges and universities but also professional schools in such fields as law, theology, medicine, business, music, and art. and the supply of home-grown universities" are encouraging Western schools to "set up shop" there.
Victor Dzau, president and chief executive of Duke University Health System, adds that the new reality will be a mix of educational cultures. "In the future, there won't be a U.S. model or a Singapore model--it'll be a global model of education," he said in the article.
Clough has chaired an initiative of the National Academy of Engineering, called The Engineer of 2020, that attempts to gaze into the future and see what it holds for the profession. "This approach," he explained, "turns on its head the notion that engineering has relied on in the past of reacting to change after the fact and trying to play catch up. I believe many of the findings are applicable to the larger university environment, not just engineering."
Clough cited Thomas Friedman's new book, The World Is Flat: A Brief History of the Twenty-first Century (Farrar, Straus and Giroux), in describing how the dissolution of the Cold War-era world, in which the former Soviet Union and United States United States, officially United States of America, republic (2005 est. pop. 295,734,000), 3,539,227 sq mi (9,166,598 sq km), North America. The United States is the world's third largest country in population and the fourth largest country in area. were archrivals, and the invention of the microchip allowed countries and higher ed institutions worldwide to compete with American IHEs for R&D dollars. "I would suggest our nation and our universities should be taking all of this very seriously because the risk in taking no action is very large," Clough said.
He offers this example of interdisciplinary collaboration at its best: Once, an engineer and cardiologist Cardiologist
Doctor who specializes in diagnosing and treating heart diseases.
Mentioned in: Electrophysiology Study of the Heart, Lithotripsy
a physician who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of heart disease. created microscopic sensors that were built into a stent (a wire mesh wire mesh, wire netting n → tela metálica tube inserted permanently into an artery to allow blood to flow freely) or sent through the bloodstream to lodge into a lung to monitor a heart patient's condition. Now, instead of a CT scan CT scan: see CAT scan.
See CAT scan. , a doctor can simply wave a wand in front of a patient's chest to pick up readings that are radioed from the sensor, or the patient can simply give the doctors readings over the phone.
"This is the kind of interdisciplinary collaboration that is at the heart of the innovation process, and it offers an exciting example of how education, research, and the commercial marketplace can join together to make something remarkable happen," Clough noted.
He suggested that institutions invest in a "talent infrastructure," made up of foreign faces eager to migrate to the United States for the freedom and opportunities it offers. "We need to replenish the pipeline of scientists and engineers who can discover the new ideas "New Ideas" is the debut single by Scottish New Wave/Indie Rock act The Dykeenies. It was first released as a Double A-side with "Will It Happen Tonight?" on July 17, 2006. The band also recorded a video for the track. and invent the new technology that form the raw materials for innovation."
Currently, the education of engineers, for example, is too narrow and too focused. Students at Georgia Tech have said they learned more in co-op and study-abroad programs that the school promotes, and by conducting research during their undergraduate years, than in the classroom. A British university business officer in the session commented, "If you had changed the words from 'U.S.' to 'U.K.', it would be agreed upon Adj. 1. agreed upon - constituted or contracted by stipulation or agreement; "stipulatory obligations"
noncontroversial, uncontroversial - not likely to arouse controversy there that universities' biggest challenge is keeping companies in the country to do research. There's no monopoly on talent around the world. Location is no longer an issue." At his school, a global emphasis is put on the engineering program by offering engineering students language classes in Japanese and Mandarin Chinese.
"We are used to thinking of ourselves in national terms through benchmark studies, rankings, and competitive processes. But, in the future, our context is going to be set by global circumstances," Clough said. He added that students from other countries are not coming to study here because they can't get visas on time. Rather, it's more that other schools in the world are competing with U.S. institutions, "so we need to be located in other parts of the world."
RELATED ARTICLE: Spanning the Globe.
GEORGIA INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY IS HARDLY the only American research university that has created programs in major international markets. Some have done so via partnerships, others have invested in building their own campuses abroad.
In early 2004, Carnegie Mellon University Carnegie Mellon University, at Pittsburgh, Pa.; est. 1967 through the merger of the Carnegie Institute of Technology (founded 1900, opened 1905) and the Mellon Institute of Industrial Research (founded 1913). (Pa.) formed an agreement with the Qatar Foundation The Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development is a private, chartered, non-profit organization in the state of Qatar, founded in 1995 by His Highness Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani, Emir of Qatar. for Education, Science and Community Development to bring two undergraduate degree “First degree” redirects here. For the BBC television series, see First Degree.
An undergraduate degree (sometimes called a first degree or simply a degree programs to a campus in the Middle eastern city of Doha. The foundation bore the cost of creating Carnegie Mellon University in Qatar.
Students in Qatar can study business administration and computer science with access to Carnegie Mellon's curriculum and faculty. The initial enrollment was 50 students for the two programs.
Carnegie Mellon is only one of several American universities with a presence in the Persian Gulf Persian Gulf, arm of the Arabian Sea, 90,000 sq mi (233,100 sq km), between the Arabian peninsula and Iran, extending c.600 mi (970 km) from the Shatt al Arab delta to the Strait of Hormuz, which links it with the Gulf of Oman. nation. Its new campus is part of the 2,400-acre Education City, a complex located in Doha that already houses the programs of other American research universities, including Texas A&M University and Virginia Commonwealth University Formed by a merger between the Richmond Professional Institute and the Medical College of Virginia in 1968, VCU has a medical school that is home to the nation's oldest organ transplant program. . Cornell University Cornell University, mainly at Ithaca, N.Y.; with land-grant, state, and private support; coeducational; chartered 1865, opened 1868. It was named for Ezra Cornell, who donated $500,000 and a tract of land. With the help of state senator Andrew D. (N.Y.) established the Cornell Medical College-Qatar in October 2003.
Just last year, the University of Chicago opened a center in Paris to promote scholarly exchange between Americans and French researchers. The center is one of many international presences for the research university. U of C already had offered undergraduate programs in several European cities, including Rome and Vienna, and it has an executive MBA MBA
Master of Business Administration
Noun 1. MBA - a master's degree in business
Master in Business, Master in Business Administration program in Singapore, which enrolls 80 students per year.
Singapore has become a hot global education market. This year the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Massachusetts Institute of Technology, at Cambridge; coeducational; chartered 1861, opened 1865 in Boston, moved 1916. It has long been recognized as an outstanding technological institute and its Sloan School of Management has notable programs in business, announced the launch of graduate engineering programs to be offered in partnership with two Singapore universities.--Jean Marie Angelo