25 March 2011

More on the Multiplier Effect

As per recent posts on the multiplier effect, an entire workforce with innovation literacy puts complementary skills to work on common innovation issues. Students develop innovation skills  through applied research project work as linked to workforce skills and education. The articulation of workforce skills development and innovation literacy is made in the OECD report on Workforce Skills and Innovation referenced here in earlier posts (this report is a must-read for anyone engaged in education and innovation). The Globe and Mail today published the Report on Campus Research 2011, which includes many good stories on applied research at Canadian colleges, and basic research from our universities. The online version has a few other stories, including an interview I did in "How Canada can get more R&D bang for its buck." I refer to the multiplier effect of using granting council funding for the development of HQSP to more broadly spur the diffusion of innovation. The point here is that we need STEM and nonSTEM working together. We can expand the idea of the multiplier effect - which I've previously used this to refer to graduate and undergraduate students with innovation literacy working together for improved productivity - to include the idea of adding value to work teams via multidisciplinary collaborative problem solving. This point is alluded to in Budget 2011, where funding for both NSERC and SSHRC can work together to promote the college research chairs through a mixture of business and technical skill-sets oriented to applied research problem solving.

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