As academics we understand research and as humans we appreciate innovation. Yet, we remain ambivalent for the two forces to join. South Africa, as a developing economy and as a nation that needs to compete in an ever-increasing competitive world, needs a spirit of entrepreneurship and innovation. Research is valued, managed and rewarded, innovation is not. Why is there a gap and, where is that gap? Government, private enterprise, academic institutions and individuals are all guilty of ignorance in terms of innovation and the growth it can incur. This is a conceptual paper that examines research and innovation in order to understand the divide, looks for reasons why they should converge and suggests guidelines how the latter can be achieved. Current theory shows research and innovation as distinct entities with different styles and outputs, yet they can achieve more if used jointly. Three models are proposed to boost the convergence of research and innovation and to assist in social development.
|Keywords:||Research, Innovation, Growth, Socio Economic Development|
Professor of Business Management, Department of Business management, University of South Africa, Pretoria, South Africa
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