December 2016 Newsletter

Transnational Higher Education: getting it right

A growing number of universities across the world are seeking to establish transnational education (TNE) ventures of one kind or another. This is usually to meet the triple challenge of globalisation, domestic economic demands and the need to internationalise to advance in global rankings. TNE ventures are found in an ever-increasing range of countries including, for example, China, Malaysia, Mauritius, Singapore, the UAE, Qatar and Vietnam. Although many of these ventures will succeed, some also will fail, resulting in significant financial losses and lasting reputational damage for all concerned.

Why do those TNE ventures fail?  Often, it is due to a lack of understanding of the local and regional market. However, several other key factors are also involved. In this article, Oxentia’s Kevin Dunseath and Chris Hall seek to identify them. By doing so, they aim to assist those aiming to establish a TNE venture to make a success of it.

Support for International Entrepreneurship

Oxford University Innovation’s Oxentia (IE) division leads on innovation management and strategy consultancy for parties who are external to the University of Oxford.  Increasingly, IE is being called upon to tap its expertise and experience to provide bespoke training in entrepreneurship.  For example, IE has recently provided the following custom programmes:

  • mentoring and business training for entrepreneurs from 14 nations participating in the Leaders in Innovation Fellowships programme, supported by the UK government’s Newton Fund via the Royal Academy of Engineering;
  • intensive residential workshops and mentorships in advanced business skills for start-up business directors sponsored by the Omani National Youth Commission;
  • entrepreneurship masterclasses targeting international business growth for SME Corp Malaysia;
  • a Master’s-level programme in ‘Knowledge-Based Entrepreneurship’ for the University of Malta; and
  • workshops in creative entrepreneurship in research for clinical academics and biomedical research scientists working within Oxford University Clinical Academic Graduate School and the Oxford National Institute for Health Research Biomedical Research Centre.

More information about IE’s activities in support of entrepreneurship is available in this brochure.

Oxentia and Consulting Services host a social sciences and humanities knowledge sharing event at Oxford University Innovation

In September, Oxentia (IE) and Consulting Services (CS) hosted a one-day knowledge sharing event on social sciences and humanities commercialisation. Approximately 50 attendees from over 35 UK universities attended the event at Oxford University Innovation (OUI) in order to discuss good practice and share successful case studies of how to best support the social sciences, arts and humanities.

The morning session consisted of plenary presentations and a panel discussion, including talks on OUI’s experiences in this sector, Sheffield University’s focus on soft commercialisation, and a funder’s view on business engagement with the social sciences from the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC). In the afternoon, breakout groups discussed topics identified by participants as being some of the key goals and challenges in the social sciences and humanities. These included how to better engage with the research base; the use of appropriate structures, KPIs, and metrics; and channels/services such as funding sources and social enterprise.

The event was a successful collaborative effort between Oxentia and Consulting Services. It was very well received by participants and helped place IE and OUI as thought leaders in the field.  See brochure.

Recent Engagements


In September, Dr Gaelle Coullon was invited to speak at CONENI LIMA 2016, the 1st International and 2nd National Congress for International Business Students. The congress was hosted at the National University Mayor de San Marco and brought together researchers, professionals, entrepreneurs and students from across Peru. Gaelle spoke about technology transfer at Oxford and Oxentia’s experiences in innovation management and entrepreneurship in Latin America.

Mexico workshop

In November, IE delivered a capacity building workshop, ‘Technology Transfer Best Practice and Skills Development Training for Practitioners’  at the 5th International Technology Transfer Conference in Tijuana, Mexico, for The Mexican Network of Technology Transfer Offices.

The workshop was part of their Newton Professional Development and Engagement Programme to help strengthen collaboration  between education, industry and society through the involvement of technology transfer offices and professionals.

Some of the topics included Basic principles of Knowledge Exchange and Commercialisation; Intellectual Property and IP Policy; Sourcing Innovation and Marketing Technology; Licensing, negotiation, and spin-outs; Business Models; Proof of Concept, prototyping and design in TTOs; and Societal and ethical considerations in innovation management.

SATT National Convention, Paris, 21 October

IE’s Tim Hart was invited as a Panelist to the 2nd National Conference for the SATTs (French national technology transfer hub network), held at the Jussieu Campus of The Pierre and Marie Curie University in Paris on October 21, 2016. Tim participated in a discussion providing an international perspective on the progress and impact of the SATT system in France; the French national hub model system for technology transfer.

Archeox wins Vice Chancellors Award for Public Engagement

We are delighted to congratulate David Griffiths, who recently received a Vice-Chancellor’s Public Engagement with Research Award for his work on the Archeox project. The project ran from 2010–2015 as an archaeological and historical research project on the landscape and historic environment of East Oxford. Over 650 volunteers participated in the project with 6,000+ volunteer days recorded.

In 2015, IE worked with the Archeox team to evaluate and report the project’s impact with regards to community engagement, skills, and perceptions of archaeology.

The Vice-Chancellor’s Public Engagement with Research Awards, new for 2016, recognise and reward individuals and departments across the University of Oxford who undertake high-quality Public Engagement with Research. There were twelve winning entries, from more than 80 nominations received.

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