Monday, January 12, 2009

NC Research Parks .... New Backbone

North Carolina demonstrates a state that is thinking outside the box with the network of Research Parks developed starting in 1959 with the Research Triangle Park in the Raleigh-Durham area. 

Information about North Carolina Research Parks are identified here.  These will leverage the unique characteristics of the individual parks that have been established in the state and highlights the diverse strengths of the state’s knowledge resources.

The North Carolina Research Parks Network’s mission is "To enhance the state of North Carolina’s global competitive position through a network of science and technology parks focused on collaborative efforts and technology-based economic development.”

In my December 2, 2008 blog “Seeing the Invisible ….” I discuss the NC Research Campus at Kannapolis, NC and include links to speeches during the November 20, 2008 Dedication.

These various research parks have emerged over a fifty year span. Stretching from Charlotte to Raleigh, they form a backbone of advanced research and development vertebrae along the I85-I40 corridor.

Expanding scope of the chart of Business Engine discussed in the previous blog “Seeing the Invisible ….”; we see NC has now put in place a research and development structure that should mesh nicely with the next phases of Production/Service and Marketplace. By creating the network of parks it should bring focus to the Business part of the engine. Advanced Manufacturing Initiatives marry well with this network of parks and will be the channel through which research products can be effectively taken to the marketplace. Also, by FedEx placing their international logistics hub in the middle of the backbone, NC is poised to be an international powerhouse of the future, if implemented appropriately.

I am encouraged to see the developments being taken by NC are congruent with my Metaphors for 21st Century (M21C) thinking and validates the concepts discussed in this blog and my companion website The Five Team Innovative Engine chart also applies nicely to this thinking.

The five hats of Scientist, Engineer, Technologist, Customer and Business are key skills of the workforce that is required for the 21st Century Economy. There are other important skills such as Global Supply Chain Management as depicted in the “Global Value Streams ….21st Century Skills” blog of April 18, 2008.

Here’s hoping that North Carolina will continue to think outside and inside the box by utilizing the best practices of an innovative engine; it appears to me these are compatible with of M21C concepts.

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