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● What companies are collaborating with whom for technology development? As the results showed, the automotive industry collaborated the most with R&D centers.

● What is the degree of improvement for such technological projects? Collaboration from three R&D centers showed considerable progress of two TRL grades. A couple of them showed three stages of progress, meaning that if we could infer from the results, around forty percent of the collaborations have good progress.

Despite the small number of answers received, twenty-six, six out of the 13 clusters responded to the survey, almost half; the automotive cluster was the most participative of them. The small sample size did not let us extrapolate and make solid conclusions around them. Notwithstanding the relatively limited sample, this work offers valuable insights into how collaborations are behaving these days.

The twenty-six answers contain a total of forty-six collaborations between clusters’

industries and research & development centers, half of them are concentrated in three research & development centers / Academic institutions: Tecnológico de Monterrey y CIMAV (Advanced Materials Research Center) with the 16% each and the UANL (Nuevo León’s Autonomous University) with 20% of the collaboration projects. The previous analysis tells us that for the automotive and the media & entertainment clusters (the most participative ones in the survey), these three R&D centers are perceived with particular affinity.

As the results showed, there is no clear preference from industry for choosing an R&D center or an academic institution/School (48% to 52%) to collaborate to.

Sixty-seven percent of the collaboration projects had some progress in the TRL concept, at least one level. That shows that the majority of times, once a collaboration project started, both parties were committed to making them work and progress.

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As of Vijay Jolly’s models, we can conclude that some Research & Development centers are looking for the first stages in the innovation process imagining and incubation, as in Schneider, UNAM, or CINVESTAV cases. Others worked in the development stages between incubation and demonstration, such as in HUB Tec China, Tecnológico de Monterrey, UANL, U-ERRE, CIMAV, or UDEM. Others were sourced for the demonstration stage, such as Christus or CIDESI.

None of the research and development centers reaching the promote nor sustain stages, but the results are encouraging; the high education schools and research and development centers must promote its work, make it more visible to the industry to turn to them as solutions for its problems or wishes to progress and grow more competitive.

This way, they can turn their eyes to them, attract them, and make them developers rather than just buyers.

According to the Vijay Jolly model and the results, our collaborations in the Monterrey area reached the demonstrating level, the promote and sustain ones as of Vijay’s; it would be a matter of a different study to investigate why. Perhaps Industry must consider involving more than one R&D center to achieve TRL-9 maturity level; it means collaborating with a technological expert R&D to develop until TRL-7 and a marketing and or media one to make it to the commercialization phase.

More information on collaborations in the Monterrey area would help establish greater accuracy on this matter. Further investigations need to be carried out to validate the results of this research and include a different technique to make the industries answer surveys or questionnaires and reach a higher validity. R&D centers should make public their collaborations with the industry and promote this way collaborations, multiply them.

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