Responding to the economic growth needs of the Caribbean, The University of the West Indies (The UWI) and Coventry University have come together to discuss the creation of an Institute for Industry-Academic Partnership.
On November 26, 2018, a team from Coventry University visited The UWI Mona Campus in Jamaica to meet with Professor Sir Hilary Beckles, Vice-Chancellor, and his team of Pro Vice-Chancellors, to flesh out the details and to design the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that will guide the creation and operations of the Institute.
On April 9, 2019, a team from The UWI led by Pro Vice-Chancellor and Principal of the St. Augustine Campus, Professor Brian Copeland and including Professor of Practice, Gerry Brooks visited Coventry University to sign the MOU. Recognising Coventry University's elite status in the area of Industry-Academic alliances, Vice-Chancellor Beckles noted that "Coventry has much to share with The UWI in this regard, and will make an excellent strategic partner in the effort to facilitate how The UWI can better contribute to Caribbean entrepreneurship, industry innovation, and professional training for the 21st century global economy."
The UWI, has been driving the process to migrate university research into the private sector for the Institute will provide research training at the postgraduate levels, and will launch a suite of Master's degrees in the Caribbean that will facilitate bridge building with industry.
Noting the pressure upon the university sector in the Caribbean to do more in this area Vice-Chancellor Beckles stated, "The Caribbean is at the innovate stage in its economic development where value added in the economy must come from applied research that is relevant to economic diversification and competitiveness. The University is well positioned to lead in this area. It's an opportunity to rise and shine. This partnership will go a long way in assisting this process."