Business Schools can help lift UK out of recession, says Dean Mark Taylor

16 October 2012

Warwick Business School Dean Mark Taylor believes business schools can help pull the country out of its economic recession.

Professor Taylor was speaking after a two-day annual conference of the Association of Business Schools, entitled Innovation for Growth, held at the University of Warwick this week.

The Government's Minister for Universities and Science David Willetts was one of the speakers at the conference that attracted more than 130 delegates.

With question marks over the ethics of banks following a series of scandals and with the UK economy still shrinking, Professor Taylor believes business schools can not only lead research to improve the nation's economy but produce a new generation of business leaders.

"This was an important conference in demonstrating the role that UK business schools can play in stimulating innovation and growth in the economy," said Professor Taylor, who delivered a presentation on Measuring the impact of UK Business Schools on Innovation and Growth at the conference.

"Convening senior management from the sector allowed the opportunity to exchange new ideas, promote collaboration, and seize the future."

To position themselves as a central player in the recovery of the nation's economy the conference saw the launch of the Business Schools, Seizing the Future booklet.

The booklet maps out the issues to make sure business schools, which play a central role in helping universities bring in £5 billion a year to the UK economy from overseas students, are at the forefront of leading the country out of recession.

Professor Angus Laing, Chairman of the ABS and Dean, Business and Economics at Loughborough University, said: "The Association of Business Schools has a key role to play in that process.

"From its roots in developing the capacity of the business school sector in the UK to deliver high quality management education, through to its contemporary role in influencing policy and promoting engagement between the business school community and the corporate community, the ABS is committed to ensuring that business schools fulfil their role in enhancing the performance and competitiveness of UK business."

Mr Willetts highlighted the importance of business schools for the country and welcomed the ABS' policies to keep the sector moving forward.

"British business schools attract people from all over the world because they are among the best in the world," said Mr Willetts. "But they operate in a very competitive environment and must constantly improve to remain ahead of the pack.

"The Coalition is very keen to champion our world-class business schools. So I welcome the work the ABS is doing - under its new leadership - to protect, improve and reinvigorate the sector."

With an increasingly competitive market with the emergence of Asian business schools, particularly in China, Professor Laing believes the ABS can help Britain stay ahead of the pack.

Professor Laing said: "The business school sector is going through change and the theme Innovation for Growth has certainly provided food for thought and some excellent discussion and debate for our delegates.

"Our Business Schools, Seizing the Future booklet contains the outcomes from our policy network meetings; we would like to thank all of those involved, the contributors and the sponsors: Hobsons, University Business and UPP for that and the conference.

"We are also delighted to announce the launch of our Business School Advisory Board Network and look forward to being more engaged with businesses and the wider higher education community going forwards."

The conference has been kindly sponsored by: Blackboard Collaborate, Blackwells Bookshops and Online, Bloomberg, FT and Hobsons.

Exhibitors included: Brathay, Carrington Crisp, Gale, Cengage Learning, Communications Management, Electric Paper and Sim Venture.

Videos from the event will be available shortly on YouTube, search The ABS UK.

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