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Building a National Smart Campus to support sustainable business development: An ecosystem approach

by   Larry Abdullai, et al.

Universities are racing towards making their campuses and cities smart in response to the global digitalization trend. However, the sustainability impact of Smart Campus research, development, and innovation services on other relevant stakeholders such as the small and medium-sized businesses, remain under-investigated. The Finnish National Smart Campus project seeks to bridge this gap by orchestrating a SC ecosystem where eight SC collaborate to bring trailblazing services to businesses and society. To maximize the sustainability impact of the SC ecosystem, this study used a participatory workshop to identify the challenges of SC, provide a step-by-step guide on how to identify other relevant stakeholders, and ascertain the perceived sustainability impact using one of the SC ecosystems RDIs as a case study. The preliminary results revealed that barriers to university-industry ecosystem development include (i), the lack of clarity in the shared goals (i.e., value proposition) between actors and (ii), weak stakeholder involvement in university RDI processes. Finally, this paper proposed a SC ecosystem model which offers a mindset shift for higher educational institutions in promoting the convergence of SC services and sustainability to support the sustainable development of Finnish-based SMEs.


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