A few months ago, for the third consecutive year, Stanford University was named the world’s most innovative university. But while it has always been at the forefront of innovation – it is home to the d.school and breeds the best web talent in the world –, the Silicon Valley college doesn’t stand alone in fostering innovation and entrepreneurship at a higher education level.
The majority of the world’s most innovative universities are in the US, with MIT and Harvard rounding up the top three of the Reuters Top 100 ranking, but universities worldwide are working on producing the next generation of innovators and entrepreneurs with specifically designed initiatives and programmes.
Through novel degrees and courses, innovation labs, innovation-driven business accelerators, makerspaces, startup competitions and hackathons, more higher education institutions than ever are focusing their efforts on fostering growth and promoting innovation and entrepreneurship.
These design and innovation-led courses don’t just provide another subject matter; they are changing higher education altogether. They are shifting the path that students take in their education and the way they confront questions after graduation.
“The responsibility to drive economic growth through creation and implementation of new ideas that generate ‘value’ for public use falls not just on corporations but also on universities,” said Rathindra DasGupta, guest editor of Technology and Innovation. “Consequently, in recent years, many universities have focused on developing initiatives to inspire, nurture, and guide future innovators.”