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Appears in:
Pages: 7251-7259
Publication year: 2015
ISBN: 978-84-608-2657-6
ISSN: 2340-1095

Conference name: 8th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 18-20 November, 2015
Location: Seville, Spain

PHD+ BRIDGES THE VALLEY OF DEATH BETWEEN RESEARCH AND INDUSTRY

P. de Wit1, R. Dekker2, M. Graef1

1Delft University of Technology (NETHERLANDS)
2Philips Research (NETHERLANDS)
The PhD+ programme has been developed to increase the success of applied academic research by a more efficient transfer of new ideas and technologies to industry. In the PhD+ programme, students are coached and advised by university and industry jointly throughout their project. In the last year of their research project they will bring their concepts to production in an industrial environment. The PhD+ program allows for a better utilization of research resources, but it is also attractive for students, because it allows them to gain industrial experience. In this paper we discuss how the PhD+ concept is being explored in the context of a large industrial ECSEL project.

Pilot lines have been identified in the European Horizon 2020 programme as key enablers for the stimulation of competitiveness and economic growth in Europe . In the InForMed project , which was recently started within the scope of the ECSEL Joint Undertaking , an industrial pilot line for micro-fabricated medical devices will be realized. In this pilot line, concepts created by academic research will be transferred to and validated in an industrial environment. This transfer is very often far from ideal because academic research tends to focus on scientific relevance rather than manufacturability. Also, differences in infrastructure may result in technologies that are difficult to industrialize. Additionally, the creation of new devices in a lab involves the development of much tacit knowledge which is essential but difficult to transfer. Due to these issues, industry often has to redo much of the research work, resulting in a loss of time and high development costs.

To overcome these technology transfer problems, we propose the PhD+ programme, in which PhD students are coached and advised by industrial experts next to their scientific supervisors. Due to the fact that manufacturing aspects and user requirements are taken into account from the start, the results of the PhD project can be readily absorbed by the pilot line. An additional advantage is that the pilot line is made aware of emerging ideas from research. The first years of the programme are identical to a normal PhD project, dedicated to research and publishing. During the last year of his/her project the PhD student will be embedded with the production experts in the pilot line, which enables the team to bring the concept to a product.

In this way, the research project will be both scientifically and industrially relevant. The scientific results will be publicly available, while the new technology is applicable in industry and in the market. By being involved in process development for technology and product validation, the PhD student gains valuable experience for an industrial as well as an academic career. The fact that the students are embedded in the pilot line for a substantial time facilitates the transfer of their tacit knowledge and expands their network in industry.

This work was co-funded by ECSEL grant no. 2014-2-662155 [InForMed]

References:
[1] Multi Key Enabling Technologies Pilot Lines, http://www.mkpl.eu/home/
[2] “An Integrated Pilot line for Medical Micro-fabricated Devices (InForMed)” www.project-informed.eu
[3] http://www.ecsel-ju.eu/web/index.php
@InProceedings{DEWIT2015PHD,
author = {de Wit, P. and Dekker, R. and Graef, M.},
title = {PHD+ BRIDGES THE VALLEY OF DEATH BETWEEN RESEARCH AND INDUSTRY},
series = {8th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation},
booktitle = {ICERI2015 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-608-2657-6},
issn = {2340-1095},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Seville, Spain},
month = {18-20 November, 2015},
year = {2015},
pages = {7251-7259}}
TY - CONF
AU - P. de Wit AU - R. Dekker AU - M. Graef
TI - PHD+ BRIDGES THE VALLEY OF DEATH BETWEEN RESEARCH AND INDUSTRY
SN - 978-84-608-2657-6/2340-1095
PY - 2015
Y1 - 18-20 November, 2015
CI - Seville, Spain
JO - 8th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
JA - ICERI2015 Proceedings
SP - 7251
EP - 7259
ER -
P. de Wit, R. Dekker, M. Graef (2015) PHD+ BRIDGES THE VALLEY OF DEATH BETWEEN RESEARCH AND INDUSTRY, ICERI2015 Proceedings, pp. 7251-7259.
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