University Business - December 2008 - (Page 37)

independent outlook Entrepreneurship in Higher Education Part of our industry, whether we like it or not By Todd S. Hutton t should come as no surprise that many people in higher education eschew the notion of entrepreneurship. For some, the very word conjures up the specter of a for-profit motive, about which they are suspicious and disapproving. over my many years in higher education, I was cautioned time and time again about not using in the presence of faculty words like “market,” “brand,” “competition,” or “product,” let alone the very foreign concept of entrepreneurship. While there remains among many faculty (but certainly not all) and other higher education practitioners a skepticism about what the Kauffman Foundation Panel on entrepreneurship curriculum in higher education defined in an october 2008 report as the “transformation of an innovation into a sustainable enterprise that generates value,” entrepreneurship and market-driven innovation have become more prevalent in higher education over the past decade and a half. CharaCteristiCs of entrepreneurship The Kauffman Foundation Panel has identified characteristics of entrepreneurship that are particularly instructive for the higher education industry. drawing upon the work of William J. Baumol, Robert e. litan, and carl J. schramm in Good Capitalism, Bad Capitalism, and the Economics of Growth and Prosperity (Yale university Press, 2007), as well as a december 2007 Chronicle of Higher Education article by economics professor J. Bradford delong, “creative destruction’s Reconstruction: Joseph schumpeter Revisited,” the panel underscores the following: I I was cautioned about not using works like ‘market,’ ‘brand,’ or ‘product’ in the presence of faculty. The defining trait of entrepreneurship is the creation of a novel enterprise that the market is willing to adopt. Hence, entrepreneurship entails the commercialization (or its functional equivalent) of an innovation. New ideas, products, or organizational schemes matter little until they achieve concrete reality in the marketplace—that is, until they are actually used. … Entrepreneurship is a process of fundamental transformation: from innovative idea to enterprise and from enterprise to value. … As a distinct mode of thought and action, it derives from business but can operate in any realm of human endeavor. … Entrepreneurship is the unique process that, by fusing innovation and implementation, allows individuals to bring new ideas into being for the benefit of themselves and others. as noted by the panel, entrepreneurship can “operate in any realm of human endeavor.” In the realm of not-for-profit higher education, the functional equivalent of commercialization of an innovative idea, product, or organizational scheme can include the development and implementation of an innovative academic or cocurricular program or a new and sustainable way of delivering a program. In this case, the “educational product” is the “sustainable enterprise that generates value.” The “value” of the enterprise will have different meanings and qualities for different people and different entities: • For a student in an innovative preprofessional or professional program, the value might be perceived as a credential that will provide entry into a profession, a prerequisite investment for future training, or a portal to higher earnings over a lifetime. • For an institution, the value lies in the preparation of students, that is, the student outcomes of its program, in the opportunity for faculty to advance their careers and contribute to the building of knowledge in a field, in the reputation benefits of the program, or in meeting the needs of a profession or the important social or economic needs of society. • For a faculty member, the sustainable value might lie in promotion and tenure, in innate satisfaction arising out of the creation and implementation of an innovative idea, in the opportunity to contribute to one’s field, in the building of personal reputation, or in the generation of knowledge and resultant products of research or other professional activity. • For an industry or specific corporation, the value could lie in the education and training of well-qualified or Todd S. Hutton has been president of Utica College (N.Y.) since 1998. He also serves on the board of The Council of Independent Colleges. December 2008 | 37

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of University Business - December 2008

University Business - December 2008
Editor's Note
College Index
Company Index
Advisory Board
Behind the News
Sense of Place
Human Resources
2009 Annual Directory to Financial Services
Future Shock
Independent Outlook
Endowment Management
Look Before You Leap
50 Best Branding Ideas
Remedial Nation
What's New
Facilities Focus
End Note

University Business - December 2008