As we head into CSW Europe in Copenhagen next week, Oct 14-16, we interviewed Flemming Binderup Gammelgaard, Chief Consultant at VIA University – Denmark’s largest university of applied science – Flemming works at the intersection of innovation, research and higher education.

Flemming is currently leading a pioneering crowdsourcing project to bridge the gap between the world of work and the world of research and education. He is also co-founder and chairman of the Danish Crowdsourcing Association, and has broad background from a range of leading brands and organizations, including the LEGO Group, Bang & Olufsen, Copenhagen Business School and the Danish Broadcasting Corporation.

Tell us about VIA University College and its vision for the crowd economy?

This month, VIA University College is launching a crowdsourcing platform and program in partnership with crowd pioneers Chaordix. At launch, the platform will connect private businesses and public institutions with 20,000+ researchers, educators and students to unlock value and productivity.

Concurrently, an educational program is being developed which will give students a working knowledge of concepts and processes such as open innovation, crowdsourcing and crowdfunding.

The VIA Connect platform will launch this October with two innovation challenges before scaling up in 2015 with more challenges sponsored by private and public sector companies and other organizations.

How will supporting an event like Crowdsourcing Week take your vision forward?

VIA University College is a founding partner of the Danish Crowdsourcing Association and, as such, one of the drivers of the crowdsourcing community in Denmark. We look forward to connecting with friends at Crowdsourcing Week Europe and to meeting new friends and partners.

How is VIA University College preparing for the new crowd powered economy?

VIA Connect will bridge the gap between the world of work and the world of research and higher education. We’re strongly committed to equipping students with future work skills required to succeed in a globally connected world. And we’re equally committed to driving collaborative innovation together with our partners from across the private and public sectors.

How important is it to equip graduating students with the mindset to embrace and further crowd principles? Please elaborate…

This spring, VIA University College was recognized as the most entrepreneurial institution of education in Denmark. We firmly believe that crowd principles are at the core of entrepreneurship as these principles continue to disrupt business models and entire industries, challenging the workings of organizations across the board. Entrepreneurial students should therefore be accustomed to connecting and collaborating online, and have a strong working knowledge of the collaborative strategies, practices and tools that are powering new forms of production and value creation.

What are your predictions on how education, both on the content and delivery, will transform in the next 5 years?

Big question! Social technologies and collaborative practices will definitely continue to have a huge impact on research and education. The applicable uses of crowdsourcing are many, but the opportunities as well as challenges remain to be explored to fully realize the potential dynamics of crowdsourcing within research and education.

VIA Facts

  • Denmark’s largest university of applied science
  • 18,000 full-time students
  • 2,500 international students
  • 2,000 faculty members & staff
  • 20 Research Centers
  • 7 Student Incubators
  • 8 campuses in 7 campus cities

VIA University is a proud sponsor of  Crowdsourcing Week Europe, the first comprehensive 3-day conference on the Crowd Economy in Europe that is bringing together the best minds in crowdsourcing, open innovation and crowdfunding to Copenhagen, Oct 14-16.