We are proud to announce that Crazy Town is part of Spanning Boundaries Development Project which is going to take place for next three years in Europe!
This project aims to break down the engagement barriers between the universities and their business stakeholders. Through training activities organized around Europe, we boost the ”boundary spanning skills” of the higher education faculty, staff, and leadership. We believe that people are the most crucial factor in the transferring of knowledge and innovation across institutions and mobilising resources across the Europe.
This 3-year project gathers nine partners across the Europe. UIIN (University Industry Innovation Network), the main organizer of this project, has been our partner for several years. Latest outcome of our partnership is the Finnish university-business-cooperation (UBC) appraisal which we published 2019 (available in Finnish here).
Crazy Town builds entrepreneurial coworking communities that collaborate with universities. We have four locations in Finland. Each one brings together solopreneurs, micro-sized companies, startups and teams from larger organizations, who want to cooperate, learn new and grow their business together. Also universities and their UBC professionals are our members.
Three elements that describe our approach to boundary spanning:
1) Culture: Our focus is on people, not organizations. No matter what background you have, you always participate as an individual. We build and nurture culture that encourages interaction between people, who either work or visit in our community.
2) Community managers: The main job of our staff is to facilitate interaction between members of our community, as well as visitors and partners. Connecting needs and services together often requires a person whom you know and trust.
3) Space: We have a physical environment designed to facilitate collaboration and networking between people. All locations have also flexible space for workshops and bigger events.
During the years, Crazy Town has organized hundreds of projects related to university-business-cooperation as a contractor, but also utilized all sorts of cooperation methods with universities to develop its own business.
To name just few examples, we’ve done curriculum development and delivery, had university staff members working for us part-time or on project-basis, had university investing seed funding into our company and even having university expert in our company board. One of our university partners uses Crazy Town as a pop-up campus and learning environment in a city where they don’t have their own campus. Way back in 2012, we even co-developed and licensed commercialization methodology IPR with one our university partners.
All these best examples have one thing in common – they happened because our counterparts in the universities were open to new ideas, but could also connect with relevant resources and deliver. In other words, they had excellent boundary spanning skills.
With the help of Spanning Boundaries, we hope to increase this kind of capability throughout Finland and Europe. For other project partners in consortium, we bring the viewpoint of a privately-funded innovation hub. Being part of this impressive group of experts is also a great opportunity for us connect our members and Finnish universities with their networks.
Please, contact Mikko Korpela if you feel that you are interested about this subject or you would like to work together with us to support the Spanning Boundaries movement in Finland!
Article extracted from Crazy Town website