Formation of the Communities of Interest
The Inaugural Meeting for the Communities of Interest ( COI ) took place on Tuesday 26th August 2014 at UCL, London, UK
Dr Mark Gilman, Director of the Centre for Employment, Competitiveness and Growth, Kent Business School, University of Kent welcomed participants to the inaugural meeting of the COI. He will lead the formation of the group, with the key aims being the establishment of a sustainable COI capable of building a range of research-led activities which promote SME growth through university/SME engagement.
Professor Stephen Roper gave an introduction to the ERC, its mission and vision focused on defining what drives SME growth, and why a COI is important to the work of the ERC.
The key aim of the meeting was to discuss how we might form a sustainable COI capable of building a range of research-led activities which promote SME growth through university/SME engagement. Individuals were invited to take part in deciding the objectives and mode of operation of the COI, and to investigate the different ways that universities can support SMEs and how a community of interest could work together to promote this on a national basis. Key issues to consider whilst doing this were:
- Building trust between all involved
- How to get HEIs and others to identify and share best practice of ‘what works’.
- Create a shared understanding and purpose around SME growth, support, and adding value.
58 People attended the meeting with a further 26 expressing an interest in future Meetings and Events.
The next communities of Interest Event will be Friday November 28th at Newcastle Business School.