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184 pp., 5.75 x 9.25, notes, index

Engines of Innovation

The Entrepreneurial University in the Twenty-First Century

By Holden Thorp and Buck Goldstein

In Engines of Innovation, Holden Thorp and Buck Goldstein make the case for the pivotal role of research universities as agents of societal change. They argue that universities must use their vast intellectual and financial resources to confront global challenges such as climate change, extreme poverty, childhood diseases, and an impending worldwide shortage of clean water.

Combining their own experiences cultivating an entrepreneurial mindset within one of the nation's elite public universities with detailed descriptions of the approaches taken by others, Thorp and Goldstein provide not only an urgent call to action but also a practical guide for our nation's leading institutions to become major players in solving the world's biggest problems. The result is a provocative and thoughtful beginning to an important conversation among educators, their supporters and trustees, policymakers, and the public at large as to how the American research university can best meet its societal responsibilities.

All royalties from this book have been assigned by the authors to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill to support innovation and entrepreneurship.

About the Author

Holden Thorp is Chancellor of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Buck Goldstein is University Entrepreneur in Residence at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.


"A growing chorus of voices is insisting that the world's great problems will be solved only through innovative thinking and that such thinking can best be found at the research university. Right at the forefront of this group are Holden Thorp . . . and Buck Goldstein . . . and they lay out a persuasive case in Engines of Innovation."

"Thorp and Goldstein make a strong case for their vision."
--Raleigh News & Observer

"Cover[s] the importance of enterprise, leadership, changing culture, responsibility, and much more. . . . A vital entry into any community or college library collection that features insights into the future of education and societal change."
--Midwest Book Review

"Thorp and Goldstein have hit the mark. Promoting innovation in higher education is one of the best things we can do for our country's global competitiveness and economic future, and this book points the way forward."
--Michael R. Bloomberg, mayor of New York City

"Universities have enabled the American dream and are among our nation's greatest competitive strengths. However, the costs of a university education are unsustainably high, and there is pressure on virtually every traditional source of revenue. Universities must transform themselves, yet they face numerous barriers to change--starting with the tenure system. This book, by one of the new generation of innovative university presidents together with a leading venture capitalist, describes how universities can embark on a whole new path. The book is full of ideas for university leaders, trustees, alumni, philanthropists, and the business community."
--Michael E. Porter, Bishop William Lawrence University Professor, Harvard Business School

"Thorp and Goldstein bring an urgent and timely message: American universities must fundamentally transform in order to assure America's global competitive leadership in the 21st century. Simply put, if colleges foster an entrepreneurial culture, innovation will flourish, both within our academic institutions, and more broadly throughout the economy. This outstanding book paves the way forward."
--John Denniston, partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers

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