NSW Branch July meeting with Dr Martin Bliemel

The NSW Branch July meeting hosted a presentation from Dr Martin Bliemel, who is the Director of the Diploma in Innovation and a Senior Lecturer at the Faculty of Transdisciplinary Innovation at UTS. Martin’s presentation focused on the question of what it is that makes a university an “entrepreneurial university”.

Although there are some clear ways in which a university can promote entrepreneurship, such as through the establishment of incubators and accelerators, and through entrepreneurial education, there is no consensus on exactly what makes an entrepreneurial university. A seminal paper by Rotheraemel, Agung and Jiang in 2007 established a taxonomy of what an entrepreneurial university is. In the past decade, however, there has been an explosion in activity by universities in trying to promote entrepreneurship in different ways. A rethink then is due of exactly what makes an entrepreneurial university.

Martin performed a bibliometric analysis of the post-2007 literature using “traditional” keywords, as defined by Rothearmel et al. (2007) as well as more “contemporary” keywords, to search for common themes that relate to entrepreneurial universities. He examined word-to-word relationships using concordance analysis. The analysis produced a list of the top keywords, which were then used to produce a pathfinder network. From this, clear themes can be seen, helping to define the ways in which universities are engaging in and supporting entrepreneurship.

The talk stimulated a lengthy and interesting discussion from the audience. Beyond the results themselves, there was much interest in the computational aspects of the work and the clustering methods used.

Martin’s talk provided a fascinating example of the way in which researchers who perhaps don’t consider themselves statisticians are nonetheless using complex statistical methods to solve problems in diverse fields.

Andrew Grant, NSW Branch councillor


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