Research Policy & Development

Benchmarking Next Generation Bioproduction

The competence centre acib is benchmarked with three other international research institutes in the field of biotechnology/biochemistry

The overall objective of this benchmarking exercise is to assess the performance of acib along the three dimensions of (1) knowledge production, (2) knowledge dissemination and (3) knowledge utilisation through an international benchmarking process against world-leading biotech centres.

The practical goals are

  • to collect, and analyse data in a systematic way for the purpose of accountability towards the Austrian Research Promotion Agency (FFG), the carriers of acib, its faculty and leadership based upon a critical reflection (legitimatization);
  • to identify strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats (SWOT) by benchmarking with the best-in-class in order to foster learning at the different management levels of acib;
  • to have a data basis to establish an action plan and to implement it to safeguard favourable positions or to improve the situation where deemed necessary;
  • to contribute to the achievements of targets (control)

In the context of this benchmarking exercise, the learning dimension is in the forefront.

The methodology guiding this research benchmarking exercise is derived from the RECORD Benchmarking Manual (Borsi et al, 2004), which focuses on the entire knowledge transformation processes of innovative research organisations (knowledge generation, knowledge utilisation, knowledge diffusion). Instead of a pure scientometric data-driven approach, a peer review panel guides this benchmarking exercise to provide evidence-based conclusions and recommendations for the participating benchmarking institutions. Scientometric data does not speak for itself, but needs to be interpreted and put in context in order to come up with meaningful adapted conclusions and recommendations.

To systematise the assessment of the peers a SWOT approach is implemented, which distinguishes between the following analytical dimensions

  • internal strengths and weaknesses referring to knowledge transformation processes (under the control of acib and the other benchmarked institutions)
  • external opportunities and threats referring to knowledge transformation processes (not under the control of acib and the other benchmarked institutions)
  • and in-between or so called negotiated factors referring to knowledge transformation processes (these factors can be partially and potentially influenced by acib and the other benchmarked institutions).

For the benchmarking exercise certain data requirements have to be met:

  • Input data (e.g. human resources and material and non-material investments)
  • Output data (e.g. publications and citations as well as innovation related indicators)
  • Information about organisational framework conditions and systemic R&I conditions.

The latter information is essential, because framework conditions are supposed to have a high negotiated or external influence on acib and the other international benchmarking institutions, which operate in different countries under different terms and conditions and are thus not completely comparable. This relates to two main dimensions: firstly, the different governance structures of the benchmarked institutions, which - among many other issues - influence their relative autonomy, responsibility and action space. Secondly, the R&I systems and economic framework conditions of the countries and industrial sectors in which the benchmarked institutions are operating need to be taken into account.


Section: Research Policy & Development

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Type: Research

Submission Date: 02/2020

Project Status: Finished

Start/End: 02/2020 - 12/2022

Project Duration: 35 months