This week's supplement on Transformative Leadership, in which University World News is partnering with The MasterCard Foundation, focuses on innovation – from how universities can harness innovation, science and technology in pursuit of sustainable development to how higher education itself can innovate to widen its impact on and leadership of social change.
The 17 Sustainable Development Goals adopted last year by the United Nations have placed particular obligations on higher education. At the same time, the concept of innovation continues to dominate the agendas of higher education institutions around the world. How can universities harness innovation in pursuit of sustainability?
Unless universities rethink their role and engage in public policy-making and social innovation, they will be part of the problem rather than fulfilling their potential to lead social transformation. It means playing a bigger role in society above their traditional one of teaching and awarding degrees.
There has been a huge amount of work done in developing eco-innovation in Brazil in the past decade, not least by universities, with the country becoming a transformative leader in the region, but its recent political and economic turmoil could put some of this work at risk.
Higher education has a central role to play in driving business innovation and economic success, but to overcome challenges facing university-business cooperation and make the most of that role requires strong leadership.
The Bologna Process has led to innovative practice in teaching and learning and academic mobility. Can it continue to prosper, open new pathways and provide leadership – promoting the university as academic innovator, incubator and inclusive institution – at a time of huge technological and political disruption across Europe?
The United Kingdom is funding innovative international partnerships at up to £5 million (US$6.2 million) each to encourage exploration, including with private partners, of new ways of widening access to and quality of higher education provision in the hope of seeing the best models scaled up by higher education systems.
The first day he came into class you could tell undergraduate Ngoni Mugwisi was planning to do some big things, his engineering professor says.