Coming up with a definition of ‘innovation’ that fits the bill for educational institutions, businesses and government agencies is a tricky business. So I won’t even attempt to do that in this blog.
We can forget the theories surrounding innovation for the time being and focus instead on an international project called RAINOVA, which is intent on exploring regional approaches to innovation in the vocational education and training (VET) sector and the VET sector’s interaction/collaboration with SMEs in this area of work.
ColegauCymru is a partner in the RAINOVA project. It is a three-year project involving 16 partners from Europe, China and Canada. The lead partner is based in the Basque Country, Spain, and the main aim of the RAINOVA project will be to encourage the development of innovation systems for the regions represented by the project partners.
The project is in its first year and is currently in the research phase. ColegauCymru, along with Adastra Cymru (based in Swansea), will be working together to undertake research into innovation in the VET sector in Wales and will be determining the extent to which the VET sector in Wales engages with other organisations and businesses in the promotion of innovation.
AdastraCymru and ColegauCymru are aiming to report back to the project partners at the end of October 2012 on the following:
- The Welsh Government’s strategy for innovation – its consultation on this ended in July 2012
- The role that colleges and universities play in innovation, how they interact with SMEs and to what extent are there systems in place for managing innovation more effectively
- An analysis of the results of questionnaires that will be undertaken in Wales with educational institutions, SMEs and government organisations