Zoubeir Tourki: Director of the National School of Engineers of Sousse and Professor in Mechanical Engineering

2014 Technology Transfer Innovation in Higher Education Technology

The highlight of my exchange experience is what I learnt about the university role in stimulating the partnership between the university and the business world to help promote an environment for professors and researchers and to transform the innovative ideas into valuable products and assist the marketing steps.During our visit to the Silicon Valley, I was delighted to discover a similar environment to what we had implemented in our Engineering school (3D Printer, CNC strato-design, 3D Scanner…).

The difference with the well-known center of Silicon Valley was significant financial capacity that allows easily making prototypes and satisfying materials needs. Upon my return to Tunisia, I contacted Karen Philbrick, the executive director of the Mineta Transportation Institute (MTI) whom I met during my exchange program to inquire about the possibility and procedure of cooperation with the Institute. Currently we are working on a memorandum draft for a possible bilateral cooperation. This cooperation will enhance the methods and technical procedures of our research Master’s degree in Highway Traffic and Transportation.Moreover, after my participation in the program, I decided to create an incubator within our engineering school, the National School of Engineers of Sousse.

This space is intended to boost the best students to transform their projects into startup creation.We received financial support from the Ministry of Higher Education and we have already started the construction of the incubator.