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Mapping Wild Cards

Inspired by: FP7 » Universities close as research does not meet the needs of industry

version: 5 / updated: 2011-02-04
id: #1611 / version id: #1031
mode: VIEW

Originally submitted by: Anthony Walker
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Last changed by: Anthony Walker
WI-WE status:

Source of inspiration

European Commission Framework Programme for RTD (FP7)

Theme/activity of inspiration


Sub-theme/area of inspiration

Bringing the benefits of research to SMEs

Optional reference/s to FP7 project/s

Use the following format: Project Acronym (Project Reference No.). Use commas if more than one project is associated to this Wild Card, for example: ALFA-BIRD (213266), SAFAR (213374), LAPCAT-II (211485)


(max. 9 words)

Universities close as research does not meet the needs of industry


(approx. 150 words)
Please describe the Wild Card (approx. 150 words)
Research interests of Universities do not meet the needs of Industry and there is a large divide between industries wanting to work with Academic institutions. This lack of technology transfer leads to industry-led research in the private sector and a complete breakdown of working relationships with Universities. The financial loss to Universities is catastrophic.


Research interests, Technology Transfer, Innovation, Academia, Industry, Industry led research


(max. 250 characters)

Research interests of Universities do not meet the needs of Industry and there is a large divide between industries wanting to work with Academic institutions. This lack of technology transfer leads to breakdown of industry-academia collaborations.


Closest timeframe for at least 50% likelihood
Please use one of the following options:

Features of life if the wild card manifests

Feature 1: business models and industrial environment
Private facilities set up to meet the needs of industry with their own agenda (e.g. establishment of corporate universities).
Feature 2: education and research environment
HEI’s collapse with no funding for research or education. Academic institutes and personnel lose the capacity for research. Quality of researchers diminished.
Feature 3: consumers, markets and lifestyles
Brain drain – lack of knowledge in future generation and a paradigm shift of export of top quality researchers to US and far east.
Feature 4: technology and infrastructure
Less personnel involved in science in the future.
Feature 5: politics and global affairs
Research determined by industry and not defined by government policy.

Type of event

Unplanned consequence of events/trends/situations (e.g. financial crisis, accidental breakthrough)

Type of emergence

please select (if any) describe related trend or situation
An extreme extension of a trend/development/situation
(e.g. Increased global warming leads to a total ban on fossil fuels)

Type of systems affected

Human-built Systems - E.g. organisations, processes, technologies, etc.




please specify:
please select
Level 4: important for the whole world closure of universities across the world due to lack of funding

Early indicators

(including weak signals)

Reduced collaboration between academia and industry

Latent phase

Obstacles for early indentification

information/communicational filters (media/editorial interests, language, reasoning)

Manifestation phase

Type of manifestation

In a probably enclosed way (e.g. geographically, sectorally)

Aftermath phase

Important implications
Collapse of a system


Funding monitoring not communicated.

Key drivers or triggers

Provide up to 2 possible drivers or triggers of HIGH importance. Click on HELP to see examples:
please describe
Driver / Trigger 1
please describe
Driver / Trigger 2
Technological/Scientific Less blue sky research requirement
Economic More applied research required and economic gain at lower risk tempts private research investment

Potential impacts (risks & opportunities)

Timeframe options
Risks Opportunities
(within 1 year after the Wild Card manifests)
Less blue sky research Indusrty makes more money
short term
(1 to 5 years after the Wild Card manifests)
No totally new technologies

Potential stakeholders' actions

it occurs
it occurs
Policy actors (at the international, European and national levels) Monitor situation Invest in promoting collaborations invest in promoting collaborations
Business actors (incl. SMEs) Look out for opportunity Take advantage of findings from research
Academic/Research sector Maintain links with indusrty and eye on objectives
Media Report Report situation

Relevance for Grand Challenges

where? please justify:
particularly relevant Europe world
Diseases, health and well-being Priority on money making research affect developments
Economic prosperity/dynamics More commercial world develops
Globalization vs. localization Affect competativeness

Relevance for thematic research areas

please justify:
particularly relevant
Research for the benefit of small & medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) Ended

Pan-European strategies potentially helping to deal with the wild card

please justify:
particularly relevant
Improving researchers mobility and career development by, for example, realising a single labour market for researchers. Industry - academia mobility
Developing and funding world-class research infrastructures Could reverse trend
Increasing the efficiency and impact of public research through Joint Programming (i.e. combining national and pan-European research efforts) or the optimisation of research programmes and priorities, for example. Could reverse trend

 Features of a research-friendly ecology contributing to deal with the wild card

For further information about 'research-friendly strategies' click here

please justify:
particularly relevant
Addressing cohesion through a localised articulation between supply and demand
(e.g. making research institutions more engaged with their own context and local users; reinforcing knowledge flows into and out of regions; etc.
Could reverse trend

Relevance for future R&D and STI policies

Note: RTD = research and technology development; STI = science, technology and innovation
Policies to promote industry-academia collaborations. Possibility of governmental incentives (financial?) for collaborations. Ensuring benefits of working relationships between industry and academia.