A research park is a massive investment, and some universities and cities have failed in this endeavor from lack of careful planning and ineffective management. Thriving research parks in the U.S. and abroad have been found to share common elements that resulted in their stability and sustainability. These elements form the best practices in creating and sustaining research parks.
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The project should have continuous funding through partnerships between the public and private sector, and through public policies that would attract and make it easy for investors and entrepreneurs to do business.
There must be a formal body or council that would help bridge institutions and preserve the research park vision over the long period it takes for the district to mature and stabilize.
The research park’s success also depends on the development of its “soft infrastructure” or human capital—researchers, innovators, skilled workers, entrepreneurs—which would be a result of years of public investments in education and skills training and the participation of universities and research institutes.
All these elements must be properly coordinated, organized, and planned by effective leadership and professional management, especially in networking among researchers, scientists, entrepreneurs, investors, and the government. Metrics should be established to monitor progress and to gauge the effectiveness of the research park.
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An entrepreneur and R&D specialist, Dr. Russ Lea, has helped facilitate the construction and funding of various tech parks and research facilities in the U.S. To know more about his work, visit this LinkedIn page.