The Canary University Foundations developed the Innovation Management Training Programme as a fundamental strategy to promote the cooperation between the Canary Universities – University of La Laguna (ULL) and University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria (ULPGC) - and business sector. This Programme has been based on the experience achieved for more than 5 years of specialization and consultancy activities in order to enhance the business-university connections and to encourage the knowledge and technology transfer between both sectors.
The Innovation Management Training Programme aims to encourage a change in the Canary companies promoting technology and knowledge transfer from the Universities, introducing good practices in management of R&D & Innovation, and offering tools, mechanisms and techniques allowing them to face the technological development and enhancing the collaboration with the Canary Universities.
This Programme has an important training component, which is related to awareness and qualification for entrepreneurs, managers, graduates, research staff and society at large on topics related to the management of R&D & Innovation, university-society technology transfer, exploitation of results, and above all, the use of the skills and knowledge generated in universities.
Among the main objectives of the Innovation Management Training Programme we find the following:
• To promote awareness of all the technological and knowledge potential of the universities and convey the importance of innovative culture.
• To encourage innovation and contribute to increase and strengthen the technological capability in the Canaries production and business.
• To raise the competitiveness of local businesses.
• To integrate innovation specialists in local businesses
The Innovation Management Training Programme is made up of the following levels and specializations:
• Innovation promoters: This is the basic level of this training programme. It has been designed for all society sectors (educators, business staff, recent graduates, investors, professionals, entrepreneurs, university and professional education students and research staff); and it is aimed to show the first steps and thoughts about technology and knowledge transfer and its role as a trigger to innovation.
• Innovation Agents: This second level is also designed for all society sectors and it’s aimed to provide the trainees with the tools to solve the demand for innovation project managers. This teaching program includes project drafting, budgeting, economic viability study and project planning.
• Innovation Consultants: This is the third level of this training programme and it is designed to carry on business innovation consultancy. In this case, after finishing this level some of the trainee can access to the Innovation Dynamization Programme, in which university graduates who have fulfilled Innovation Promoters, Innovation Agents and Innovation Consultants’ levels are placed in research groups from the Universities and in companies of the region to promote business-university co-operation lines. The work done by these consultants increases the opportunities for detecting the scientific and technological needs of the business sector, which may be solved by the research groups of the universities from the Canary Islands.
. The consultants must fulfil the following tasks:
- Detection of the technological offer made by the Canaries universities.
- Improvement of the communication between university research groups and companies.
- Development of a Technology Plan.
- Identification of innovative proposals.
- Preparation of an R & D draft and detection of public funding.
• Innovation Auditors: This is the fourth and last level of the Innovation Management Training Programme. It helps the trainees to learn the necessary skills required by the UNE 166.000 in order to achieve the excellence in the management of innovation and collaboration with the universities.
Main beneficiaries from the Innovation Management Training Programme are, on one hand, the research groups of the two universities of the Canary Islands and the companies from this region, and on the other hand, university graduates who have the chance to benefit from a specialized training as well as a valuable professional experience.
Also, it must be emphasized that students, business staff and society at large has benefited from this training thanks to the first two training levels of the Innovation Management Training Programme.
Over the course of all the three last editions of the Innovation Management Training Programme (2008-2011) the following results have been obtained:
• 6042 people were trained in the Innovation Promoters’ level.
• 4988 people were trained in the Innovation Agents’ level.
• 396 people were trained in the Innovation Consultants’ level.
• 71 people were trained in the Innovation Auditors’ level.
Also, Innovation Dynamization Programme has generated the following results:
• 166 research groups from 10 different areas from the University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria and 140 research groups from 10 different areas from the University of La Laguna have taken part in the Programme
• 255 R&D+i pre-projects with an economic value of over € 10 million
• 4730 companies contacted as a result of commercial activity
As way to show what has been developed at the universities as well as to enhance communication between researchers and companies, Technology Markets are held during this Programme, obtaining the following results:
• Meetings between universities researchers and companies
• University-Business Agreements
Moreover, support was also given for grants submission as for example:
• Plan Avanza
• Experimental Development
• Regional Incentives
As a way to provide more information about this initiative and its outreach, the following links to the official websites and videos promoting the Innovation Management Training Programme and the Innovation Dynamization Programme (Links in Spanish only):
- Innovation Management Training Programme’s website:
- Innovation Management Training Programme’s video:
- Innovation Dynamization Programme’s video: