The notion of Public-Private Partnerships has on several occasions been heralded as one of the pivotal mechanisms for a move towards more sustainable societies. Through such partnerships it is suggested that major stakeholders (governments, NGOs, international organisations, and the private sector) can address common societal aims while utilising each others' specific strengths and compensating own weaknesses. In this context, what is or could be the role of universities? This paper addresses the concept of public-private partnerships and discusses the role of universities if and when actively participating in ‘life outside the ivory tower’. Three cases are presented to underline the importance of what is signified as Public-Private-Academic Partnerships (PPAP). It is argued that mediation is a major function of universities in such partnerships, including both provision of new knowledge and conciliation of opposing views. Universities may act as catalytic entities, which can speed up processes that would otherwise fail or take longer time to succeed.
Global Environmental Management, 2006
Main Research Area:
Environmental Management for Sustainable Universities (EMSU) Conference 2006