Institutionalization of International University Research Ventures

Jan Youtie, Yin Li, Juan Rogers, Philip Shapira

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


International research collaborations are widespread, but few have studied those that reach the scale and scope of what we call international university research ventures (IURVs). In an IURV, a university sets up a formal and organizationally consolidated research relationship in a foreign country. This paper puts forward an institutionalization framework to explain the development of IURVs with different forms. Five case studies are presented of IURVs in the countries with the largest number of IURVs involving US universities: China and Singapore. The five cases are examined relative to the elements of the institutionalization framework: nominal, leadership, administrative support, multi-year funding, research targets, formal researcher-to-researcher exchange, visibility, evaluation, and supporting characteristics. The results show that the emergence of IURVs depends on the specific connection between the role of government and availability of resources with the realization of mutual benefits, which lead to different patterns of institutionalization. This variation is in part a function of the degree of involvement of the government agency or department providing the funding for the IURV, which seeks to retain the knowledge produced by the IURV in the region through institutionalized mechanisms as well as the development of scientific and technical human capital in the host country. Institutionalization is not a benefit without limits; nevertheless, an institutionalized structure may be necessary if ambitious research-driven goals are to be achieved.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1692-1705
Number of pages14
JournalResearch Policy
Issue number9
Early online date1 Sept 2017
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2017

Research Beacons, Institutes and Platforms

  • Manchester Institute of Biotechnology
  • Manchester Institute of Innovation Research
  • Manchester Urban Institute


Dive into the research topics of 'Institutionalization of International University Research Ventures'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this