Grants and Prizes
Jean-Jacques Degroof, a former fellow of the MIT Sloan School of Management, is an educator and mentor who focuses on instruction in entrepreneurship. In addition to his fellowship at MIT, Jean-Jacques Degroof was a fellow of the Center for Business and Government at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government.
Now called the Mossavar-Rahmani Center for Business & Government, it seeks to improve the knowledge and policy understanding of issues at the intersection of the public and private sectors. Drawing on the unique intellectual resources of the Kennedy School and Harvard University, it brings together thought leaders from both business and government to conduct research, engage in dialogue, and seeks answers that are both rigorous and policy relevant.
While a CBG Fellow, Jean-Jacques Degroof pursued the research initiated while he was a Ph.D. candidate at MIT on academic spin-off ventures as vehicles of technology transfer. This work fitted within broader interests of the Mossavar-Rahmani Center for Business & Government that seek to improve linkages between research and policy communities.
With a background in banking and education, Jean-Jacques Degroof serves as an instructor in the area of entrepreneurship at business schools throughout Europe. In the past, Jean-Jacques Degroof was a teaching assistant at the MIT Sloan School of Management, where he was also an MIT Sloan Fellow.
Fellowship positions at prestigious schools are highly competitive. In the context of a university, a fellow is an individual who undertakes a short-term opportunity of months or years to study and develop further professional knowledge as a graduate student, but is not obliged to meet the teaching and research requirements mandated for the typical graduate student. Instead, fellows focus on furthering their education through rigorous elite courses.
The MIT Sloan Fellows Program is one of the most respected fellowships in the world. Applicants must have already forged a promising career for themselves before they can begin the program, as all applicants must have at least 10 years of experience in the workforce. Anyone seeking to join the MIT one-year MBA/MS program must demonstrate excellence in leadership and functional expertise and must show a commitment to innovation and global thinking.
MIT’s Educational Council
With degrees in business administration and organizational behavior from the Catholic University of Louvain in Belgium, Jean-Jacques Degroof went on to earn an MS as well as a PhD in management from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge, Massachusetts. With a range of experience in the financial services industry and within academia, Jean-Jacques Degroof gives back in part as an Educational Counselor with MIT’s Educational Council.
Educational Counselors (ECs) are MIT alumni that help recruit prospective students and provide resources for them. ECs act like ambassadors for the school, offering recruits a personal connection through which they can ask questions, provide feedback on their experiences, and see the kinds of opportunities that may open up to them after they have graduated.
The idea for the Educational Council began in 1931 when MIT’s then-president Karl T. Compton chose exemplary graduates to be what he called “honorary secretaries” to recruit candidates for the school. The Council was formed officially in 1950 when it began to work with the Office of Admissions and the Office of Alumni to manage the high volume of applications that came in this way. Maintaining a close relationship between the school’s alumni and its new recruits helps to maintain a strong sense of continuity that contributes to MIT’s high-quality reputation.
Before assuming his current position with the IPC, Jean-Jacques Degroof held the title of Researcher for the institute from 2002 to 2004. Notably, he collaborated on the Local Innovation System project, which is summarized in a working paper titled “Universities, Innovation, and the Competitiveness of Local Economies,” authored by Professor Richard Lester.
The report suggests that institutions of higher learning can contribute to regional innovation and economic growth through their traditional roles of education and research, but also in less traditional ways involving interactions with industry. However, the types of relevant exchanges with industry (including consulting, contract and joint research, licensing and patenting, providing public spaces, and others) depend on the form of local industrial development.
The paper thus suggests that the current focus on licensing and patenting should be replaced with a more nuanced approach to development.
About Jean-Jacques Degroof
Prior to working as an Affiliate Researcher for the IPC, Jean-Jacques Degroof earned both his Master of Science and his Doctor of Philosophy in Management from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He has contributed to another research project conducted by the MIT Industrial Performance Center and the Center for Business Research of the University of Cambridge titled “Benchmarking Innovation.” The research was sponsored by the Cambridge-MIT Institute. It is summarized in the report, which is titled “UK plc: Just how innovative are we?”
Jean Jacques Degroof holds an M. S. and a Ph.D. from the MIT Sloan School of Management. His research has focused on entrepreneurship as a source of technology innovation. He has specifically investigated processes of spinning off new ventures from academic institutions. He is particularly interested in this phenomenon in regions located outside established high tech clusters.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Sloan School of Management
An expert in management and regional development who holds a PhD from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Sloan School of Management, Jean-Jacques Degroof currently serves as a venture investor and teacher in the greater Benelux region of Europe. After obtaining his PhD, Jean-Jacques Degroof remained at MIT to conduct research in the Institute’s Industrial Performance Center (IPC), where he served as a researcher with the Local Innovation Systems Project.
As part of the IPC’s commitment to “innovation, productivity, and competitiveness,” the Local Innovation Systems Project is an international research partnership that took place from 2002 to 2005. This project was created to discover how local economic communities can not only survive but prosper in a rapidly changing global marketplace.
The Local Innovation Systems Project concentrated on the role that innovation plays in promoting business productivity and growth at the local level. It also examined how to create and sustain local environments that are attractive for innovation and that are able to retain innovative business organizations. The Local Innovation Systems Project published its findings in a 2005 summary report.
Sloan Fellows Program
Dr. Jean-Jacques Degroof lectures at various universities and business schools across Europe and provides mentorship in venture investing. Earlier in his career, Dr. Jean-Jacques Degroof completed a fellowship with the MIT Sloan School of Management in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The Sloan School of Management provides students with the opportunity to develop their global leadership skills through the Sloan Fellows Program.
A one-year executive master of business administration program, the Sloan Fellows Program aims to provide graduates the necessary skills and tools to become elite global managers. Fellows within the program are exposed to late-breaking research as well as core fundamentals within the areas of business and technology. In addition, students graduate with access to a broad international network consisting of MIT peers and entrepreneurial leaders.
The Sloan Fellows Program offers students a number of distinct advantages, making it one of the top entrepreneurial leaderships programs worldwide. Students receive instruction from a team of global industry leaders and become immersed in solving organizational challenges while exploring issues vital to leadership growth. Furthermore, the program gives students the flexibility to customize their curricula to include electives and experiences that suit their personal and professional goals.