IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/spr/jknowl/v6y2015i3p568-588.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

The Role of Human Capital in University-Business Cooperation: The Case of Mexico

Author

Listed:
  • Humberto Merritt

    ()

Abstract

The interaction between industrial firms and academia has long been extremely weak in Mexico in spite of the manufacturing revival sparked by NAFTA since 1994. This situation is paradoxical given the persistent efforts from the Mexican State to encourage university-industry linkages. Over the years, this uncoupling has produced two effects: on the one hand, university research has followed its own agenda, mainly driven by scientists’ interests based on their career tracks, and on the other hand, most firms lack research and development capabilities because they have preferred to seek abroad for technological advice. Because human capital plays a crucial role in this phenomenon, we then focus on answering the following question: to what extent are Mexican industrial firms able to harness university knowledge? Analyses carried out on a survey of 39,336 enterprises, which were collected by the National Institute of Statistics and Geography (INEGI), suggest that larger firms are more capable of absorbing the knowledge generated by universities thanks to their higher level of human capital, whereas smaller firms face harder challenges to harness academic knowledge because of their lack of qualified engineers and technicians that can help them to address their innovative endeavours. The implication of these results for public policy is that collaboration between industry and academia in Mexico can be encouraged by selectively supporting the hire of relatively low-trained engineering graduates and technicians, whereas universities should also be able to promote key programming skills, technical training, infrastructure skills and even sales training and negotiation skills, much earlier in the academic process. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Suggested Citation

  • Humberto Merritt, 2015. "The Role of Human Capital in University-Business Cooperation: The Case of Mexico," Journal of the Knowledge Economy, Springer;Portland International Center for Management of Engineering and Technology (PICMET), vol. 6(3), pages 568-588, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:jknowl:v:6:y:2015:i:3:p:568-588 DOI: 10.1007/s13132-015-0258-3
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1007/s13132-015-0258-3
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Etzkowitz, Henry & Leydesdorff, Loet, 2000. "The dynamics of innovation: from National Systems and "Mode 2" to a Triple Helix of university-industry-government relations," Research Policy, Elsevier, pages 109-123.
    2. Etzkowitz, Henry & Webster, Andrew & Gebhardt, Christiane & Terra, Branca Regina Cantisano, 2000. "The future of the university and the university of the future: evolution of ivory tower to entrepreneurial paradigm," Research Policy, Elsevier, pages 313-330.
    3. Rafferty, Matthew, 2008. "The Bayh-Dole Act and university research and development," Research Policy, Elsevier, pages 29-40.
    4. Etzkowitz, Henry, 1998. "The norms of entrepreneurial science: cognitive effects of the new university-industry linkages," Research Policy, Elsevier, pages 823-833.
    5. Santiago, Fernando & Alcorta, Ludovico, 2012. "Human resource management for learning through knowledge exploitation and knowledge exploration: Pharmaceuticals in Mexico," Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, Elsevier, vol. 23(4), pages 530-546.
    6. Eric von Hippel, 2006. "Democratizing Innovation," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262720477, January.
    7. Alessandro Muscio, 2007. "THE IMPACT OF ABSORPTIVE CAPACITY ON SMEs' COLLABORATION," Economics of Innovation and New Technology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 16(8), pages 653-668.
    8. Elias G. Carayannis & David F.J. Campbell, 2010. "Triple Helix, Quadruple Helix and Quintuple Helix and How Do Knowledge, Innovation and the Environment Relate To Each Other? : A Proposed Framework for a Trans-disciplinary Analysis of Sustainable Dev," International Journal of Social Ecology and Sustainable Development (IJSESD), IGI Global, pages 41-69.
    9. Gregory Trencher & Masaru Yarime & Kes B. McCormick & Christopher N. H. Doll & Steven B. Kraines, 2014. "Beyond the third mission: Exploring the emerging university function of co-creation for sustainability," Science and Public Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 41(2), pages 151-179.
    10. Robert E. Litan & Lesa Mitchell & E. J. Reedy, 2008. "Commercializing University Innovations: Alternative Approaches," NBER Chapters,in: Innovation Policy and the Economy, Volume 8, pages 31-57 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    11. Joanna Poyago-Theotoky & John Beath & Donald S. Siegel, 2002. "Universities and Fundamental Research: Reflections on the Growth of University--Industry Partnerships," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 18(1), pages 10-21, Spring.
    12. D'Este, P. & Patel, P., 2007. "University-industry linkages in the UK: What are the factors underlying the variety of interactions with industry?," Research Policy, Elsevier, pages 1295-1313.
    13. Stefano Paleari & Davide Donina & Michele Meoli, 2015. "The role of the university in twenty-first century European society," The Journal of Technology Transfer, Springer, vol. 40(3), pages 369-379, June.
    14. Rosenberg, Nathan & Nelson, Richard R., 1994. "American universities and technical advance in industry," Research Policy, Elsevier, pages 323-348.
    15. Shane, Scott, 2004. "Encouraging university entrepreneurship? The effect of the Bayh-Dole Act on university patenting in the United States," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 19(1), pages 127-151, January.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Mexico; University-industry cooperation; Human capital; Industrial innovation; Absorptive capacity; I23; I25; L60; O15; O32;

    JEL classification:

    • I23 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Higher Education; Research Institutions
    • I25 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Education and Economic Development
    • L60 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Manufacturing - - - General
    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration
    • O32 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Management of Technological Innovation and R&D

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:spr:jknowl:v:6:y:2015:i:3:p:568-588. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Sonal Shukla) or (Rebekah McClure). General contact details of provider: http://www.springer.com .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.