Letters to the editor for 6 August 2013

Boosting business

[Re: Open for business: How universities can boost our long-term recovery, Friday]

Stephen Caddick is right to call for more active collaboration between business and universities. This is happening already through the University Technical Colleges (UTCs) across the country. These institutions are high quality technical schools for 14 to 19 year olds, bringing some 400 businesses and 40 universities together. To see real benefit we must bridge divides and share expertise, something I have worked for throughout my 30 years in education.

Dr Elizabeth Sidwell CBE, UTC adviser and former schools commissioner

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Charitable profit

[Re: Why UK charities rarely benefit from the rise in corporate volunteering, Wednesday]

Businesses certainly get a lot wrong when it comes to altruism. But charities could stand to learn a lot from enterprise, which has become fantastic at solving many problems. Our non-profits, however, ask us to donate precisely because so little progress is made towards helping the most vulnerable. For too long we’ve told charities that they can’t invest in new ideas or make a profit. But without taking risks or raising capital, they are seldom able to expand. No wonder our corporate sector is often so much more effective.

Michael Campbell

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