GLOBAL: Business school involvement in innovation

Business and management schools worldwide should be playing a larger role when it comes to innovation according to Business Schools on an Innovation Mission, a report by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business .

Last week the Florida, US-based AACSB and its task force on business schools and innovation released a report urging more commercial appliance of science.

"This report clearly positions management and leadership, along with science and technology, as vital components to the innovation value chain," says John J Fernandes, President and CEO of AACSB international.

Business Schools on an Innovation Mission describes ways business and management schools can become more involved in influencing government policy regarding innovation-related issues. The report outlines recommendations for business schools on how to become involved and to reach their full potential.

Examples include the integration of innovation into education and research goals within universities and research centres and better collaboration between business and management schools with other university departments.

"Business school graduates play a critical and, in some cases, defining role by making strategic investments; building organisational capacity to innovate; reinventing management processes; and more. Thus, business schools can and should make a concerted effort to incorporate innovation as a critical element of their strategy," Fernandes says.

The report also evaluates the process of commercial innovation, noting its potential complexity.

"The report highlights the significant role that leadership and managerial talent play in the success of innovation strategies, and why they must be developed in a way that complements science and technology policy initiatives," says Robert S Sullivan, Dean of the Rady School of Management at the University of California, San Diego, and chair of the AACSB task force.

According to Sullivan innovation has become a priority to policy makers as the world deals with the current economic recession. The report is currently available to its AACSB members and will be released to the general public on 1 June.