The purpose of this study is to understand the role of leadership in bridging the cultural gap within university-industry cooperative research centres. Many different aspects of university-industry collaborations have been researched, but the role of leadership in such organizations has not been deeply investigated. In order to advance our understanding in this context, our multiple case study addresses the question of how leadership bridges the cultural divide within university-industry joint laboratories. Our results are derived from 53 in-depth interviews with laboratory directors and employees representatives from both the company and the university within eight joint laboratories of Telecom Italia. We find that leadership theories help to shed light on the performance of university-industry collaboration. We specifically identify charismatic leadership at the individual level followed by distributed leadership practices at the collective level as being crucial in bridging the cultural divide between individuals within university-industry research centres. Our qualitative analysis draws on an analytical framework for leadership of university-industry cooperative research centres. Our findings provide specific insights that advance the literature in management of university-industry collaborations as well as leadership theories.
|Publication status||Published - 2016|