Knowledge at low cost

- Associate professor at CBS, Henrik Herlau, has developed a database that will help the corporate sector gain new knowledge and students get management training


Associate professor at CBS, Henrik Herlau, has developed a database that will help the corporate sector gain new knowledge and students get management training

What do you get if you take 50,000 graduates, one database and a lot of businesses? According to Henrik Herlau from the Department of Management, Politics and Philosophy, this is the recipe for a brand new market. He wants to use the knowledge of the students to solve the present problems of the businesses in a way that is beneficial to both parties.

- We cannot create the good entrepreneurs by ourselves, but the corporate sector can help us. In CBS’s oldest interdisciplinary innovation programme supported by the Ministry of Science, technology and Innovation, the Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship and Project Leadership and Innovation, the students go through a management training programme, where they learn how to become the best leaders on the market. In order to become that, however, they need hands-on experience with real-life problems. The corporate sector wants new knowledge, but new knowledge does not come cheap. It is therefore natural for the two parties to help each other, Henrik Herlau explains.

A valuable resource

In order to transform knowledge into money, the students have to learn how to become skilled leaders through self evaluation and assessment by Henrik Herlau and other students. They also need to get in contact with the corporate sector, so they will have a network of professional contacts before they leave university.

- The new generation has the knowledge that the corporate sector needs and in this programme, we will help them find the key to using this knowledge for making money for the businesses. As a minimum, the students have to make sure that the businesses get their money's worth once they are employed, says Henrik Herlau.

From problem to knowledge

The database, which is the foundation of the programme, is a platform to which the students upload and share their experience with their research. The businesses will have direct access to this database, and they will be able to follow the development and use the knowledge of the students. Furthermore, Henrik Herlau has access to the database, which allows him to monitor the development of the students' work and evaluate them.

- Businesses have to be innovative in order to stay in business. They do not, however, always have the knowledge required. What they do have is a feeling about ”something”, which may be realised in their business. The students are brought into this ”something”, after which they start their research while training their management skills, says Henrik Herlau.

Innovation is the way out of the crisis

Even the strongest businesses have to think outside the box – before it is absolutely necessary – if they do not want the crisis to hit them. When we do end up in a crisis situation, we learn that what we have done up until now has been wrong, and then we immediately start thinking outside the box.

- For example, the government uses a traditional management tool when preparing packages to stabilise the crisis. How about creating another type of package that releases human capital? How about activating the many unused resources on the universities and using their knowledge in the corporate sector? How about creating a market for knowledge? Henrik Herlau asks challengingly.

The page was last edited by: Communications // 08/24/2009