The socioeconomic importance of research-based education


In order to provide effect-based policy guidance, we seek to answer the following question: “What are the societal effects of university-based education in a complex R&D innovation ecosystem, and how might educational policy be improved so as to maximize these effects efficiently?” Answering such a question is crucial in determining whether recent policy reforms of the Danish educational system have generated or will generate ripple effects on innovation, growth and societal well-being.In order to answer such an important question, we believe that it is necessary to (1) approach the complex system at several key nodes, (2) use a cross-disciplinary approach that draws on both economics and sociology, (3) employ both micro and macro modeling techniques, and (4) collect and use unique data. To this end, we define five sub-projects. Project 1 (P1) will use a macroeconomic model to estimate the effect of universityfunding levels on the quality of students. P2 will qualitatively investigate the impact of the private sector on academic research and teaching. P3 and P4 will seek to understand the value that research-based universities provide to individuals and to firms, respectively. P5 will extend the set of sociological-impact models that can be used to understand the R&D-innovation ecosystem.The project will be led by Anders Sørensen, Professor of Empirical Economics, Copenhagen Business School Economics, Director of CBS’s Center for Innovation (2017). Sørensen is a senior researcher in the areas of R&D, innovation, firm performance and the economics of education. He will lead an international research team of economists and sociologists who are top researchers in their fields. Active guidance will be provided by our advisory board: Edward Lazear-Stanford, Chief Economic Advisor to President George W. Bush; Kathryn Shaw-Stanford, STEP Board, National Academy of Science; and Andrew Webster, University of York, Director of the SATSU and of AsSIST-UK.


Private (National)


Novo Nordisk Fonden

Collaborative partners:

University of Western Ontario (Western University), University of Wisconsin-Madison, University of Copenhagen



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