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Academia and Public Policy: Towards the co-generation of knowledge and learning processes

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  • Mari Jose Aranguren

    ()
    (Basque Institute of Competitiveness and University of Deusto)

  • Miren Larrea

    ()
    (Basque Institute of Competitiveness and University of Deusto)

  • James R. Wilson

    ()
    (Basque Institute of Competitiveness and University of Deusto)

Abstract

Building from the context of ongoing debates around the changing roles of universities in society, this paper contributes to analysis of academia-society interface in two important respects. First, the paper considers the under- researched subset of relations that exist between academia and public policy. It is argued that academia-policy relations bear similarities to academia-market relations; like imperfect markets, policy environments tend to be characterised by concentrations of power. Thus similar concerns to those evident in debates around the commercialisation of university activity are relevant. Second, the paper explores the issue of balance in the role of the academic with regards public policy though an auto-reflective case analysis of an emerging experience in the Basque Country region of Spain. An aim is to reflect on the very fine (and frequently controversial) line between policy- oriented academic research and policy consultancy. The analysis highlights some of the benefits and issues with integrating action research principles into research projects, and suggests the significance of co-generation of knowledge and learning processes between academics and policy-makers. In turn this has specific implications for the time-horizon of relationships (long- rather than short-term) and for doctoral training (in research methodologies appropriate for such processes).

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Basque Institute of Competitiveness in its series Working Papers with number 200903.

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Handle: RePEc:ivc:wpaper:200903

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Postal: 20012
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Keywords: Universities; Public Policy; Action Research;

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  1. Kevin Morgan, 2004. "The exaggerated death of geography: learning, proximity and territorial innovation systems," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 4(1), pages 3-21, January.
  2. Blundell, Richard, et al, 2000. "The Returns to Higher Education in Britain: Evidence from a British Cohort," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 110(461), pages F82-99, February.
  3. Cooke, Philip & Gomez Uranga, Mikel & Etxebarria, Goio, 1997. "Regional innovation systems: Institutional and organisational dimensions," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 26(4-5), pages 475-491, December.
  4. Jonathan Temple, 1999. "The New Growth Evidence," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 37(1), pages 112-156, March.
  5. Bengt-Åke Lundvall, 2002. "The University in the Learning Economy," DRUID Working Papers 02-06, DRUID, Copenhagen Business School, Department of Industrial Economics and Strategy/Aalborg University, Department of Business Studies.
  6. Lucas, Robert Jr., 1988. "On the mechanics of economic development," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 3-42, July.
  7. Kevin Morgan, 1997. "The Learning Region: Institutions, Innovation and Regional Renewal," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 31(5), pages 491-503.
  8. Andy Pike, 2007. "Editorial: Whither Regional Studies?," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 41(9), pages 1143-1148.
  9. Scott, Allen J., 1999. "Regions and the World Economy: The Coming Shape of Global Production, Competition, and Political Order," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198296584.
  10. N. Gregory Mankiw & David Romer & David N. Weil, 1992. "A Contribution to the Empirics of Economic Growth," NBER Working Papers 3541, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Roger Sugden & James R. Wilson, 2005. "Economic Globalisation: Dialectics, Conceptualisation And Choice," Contributions to Political Economy, Oxford University Press, vol. 24(1), pages 13-32, August.
  12. Richard Layard, 2006. "Happiness and Public Policy: a Challenge to the Profession," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 116(510), pages C24-C33, 03.
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