What is the role of business in education?

For most people, say “education” and the instant image conjured is “school” – centres of learning that are usually insulated from commercial interests.

With a little investigation, however, it becomes obvious that education and business are, and have always been, intertwined. Universities provide experimentation and research which has immeasurable commercial value (the discovery of DNA, RNA, CRISPR, etc.) as well as graduating the next generation of business professionals.

Likewise, business has long provided funding and research that has made a significant contribution to academia (Lockheed’s Skunk Works, DuPont’s Experimental Station are good examples) as well as feeding back professionals to help shape the learning agenda.

As we look to the future, the more pertinent question becomes: “how can business’ role in education help create a sustainable and equitable future?

At CPA Australia, we are passionate about creating a culture of lifelong learning. Our CPA Program is unique in that we consult extensively with our education partners (which include both business and academia) in order to create technical content that prepares professionals to excel in modern financial roles.

What’s more, we provide our members with the skills necessary to succeed in business strategy and leadership. We teach integrated reporting and contemporary business issues to promote more than just accounting in business, but accountability.

Business has important insights into the challenges of the future and can position itself as a source of solutions. As the biggest accounting membership body in Australia, CPA Australia is committed to being part of those solutions.

Our members are already part of a highly mobile global workforce. The need for individuals to have the skills and capabilities that will allow them to work in a global setting is only going to grow in importance. Our long standing focus on meeting the challenge of preparing a workforce fit for the future aligns with the goals of the 21st Century Minds Accelerator Program.

The additional burden on future generations is that many of the practices of the past will no longer be feasible. Professionals from the STEM disciplines will play an important part in responding to these complex problems. One of our core strategic imperatives is to protect the public interest and secure a pipeline of capable talent for the future. Partnering with the 21st Century Minds Accelerator Program allows us to demonstrate our commitment to Australia’s competition and innovation landscape.

As capable and technically astute businesses create new products, new supply chains and new production methods, CPA Australia and its members will be there to assist in guiding and accounting for these innovations.

With thanks to our contributing author – Paul Drum, Head of Policy, CPA Australia. Follow him on Twitter.

Watch the video below for more insights from our other 21CM collaborators