Here’s disturbing story from the UK (reg req):
Recession-hit companies scale back university liaison offices
Universities could find it more difficult to find industry research partners as hi-tech companies look to scale back or close their academic liaison departments in the wake of the financial crisis.
And a quote:
The defence technology company QinetiQ, spun out of the government’s Defence Evaluation and Research Agency in 2001, has closed its central academic liaison department. And within the past few months, the mobile telecoms company Vodaphone has moved its academic cooperation work into a single office in Germany. Previously, academic liaison was handled by a team scattered across different countries including Germany, the UK and Spain.
This has to be a concern if it is generally true: the idea that industry-academic partnerships are a good thing is reasonable on the face of it, but if industry decides it’s not interested, then what…?
A previous post here gives a very different perspective on how such interactions might actually evolve.