The Evolution of University Technology Transfer towards Involvement with Industry: the Case of the Politecnico di Torino

Augusto Cocorullo*

*Corresponding author

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


The Italian university scene was strongly influenced by the advent of so-called “knowledge society” that has resulted in a substantial transformation of the main institutions of knowledge production, including universities, in terms of services to offer and functions to performer, in order to give concrete answers to the increasingly insistent demands from society: not only traditional education of young people and the production of knowledge, but also training for life-long learning, continuous training and upgrading, advice, assistance and technology transfer, new modes of knowledge production. Moreover, ever the past three decades, university research activities have increasingly become organized around economic imperatives. Therefore, in this paper it is analyzed the case of the Politecnico di Torino and of I3P, the Innovative Enterprise Incubator of the Politecnico di Torino, in terms of connection with the economic environment, in the light of the idea that changes in technology have enhanced the connections between research universities and economic policies (Geiger 2006). I3P’s mission is to promote the creation of new science-based businesses with validated growth potential, either founded by university researchers or entrepreneurs from outside the university sphere. I3P provides open spaces and professional consulting services to start business as well as a network of entrepreneurs, managers and investors. Founded on 1999, I3P is located in Torino (Italy) and by now has launched 160 start-ups that have been able to exploit the results of research in different fields: from cleantech to medtech, from Information Technology to electronics, mechanical, energy, to other industrial. Its mission is to promote the creation of new science-oriented firms with high-growth potential. The activity of I3P follows the global strategies of the Piedmont region, in order to sustain research, technology innovation and new entrepreneurship. Specifically it aims to: provide consulting services during the enterprise creation process (these services are free of charge); manage a network and a high profile marketplace involving entrepreneurs, managers and investors; provide a location for enterprises to create reciprocal synergies.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDeveloping Third Mission Activities in Universities
Number of pages23
Publication statusPublished - 2014
EventDeveloping Third Mission Activities in Albanian Universities - Durazzo
Duration: 18 Sept 201419 Sept 2014


ConferenceDeveloping Third Mission Activities in Albanian Universities


  • third mission
  • technology transfer
  • economic development


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