Interview with Jean-Marie Barbiche, École Centrale Paris
Knovel helps École Centrale Paris instill best practices in finding and using reliable technical insights for applied engineering problems.
Founded in 1829—and with legendary alumni that include Gustav Eiffel, Andre Michelin and Armand Peugeot—the École Centrale has long instructed its innovative engineers and entrepreneurs to pursue concepts with the global impact of design in mind. Today it remains one of the most prestigious science and engineering schools in France. Jean-Marie Barbiche, head of the library at École Central, has a special talent for finding essential technical information—and he is committed to passing on this ability to the students through Knovel.
The mission of École Centrale is not to train each student for a particular job. Instead the school strives to teach students techniques and skills they can apply to any complex engineering problem.
Companies want our students to be scientifically aware of both problematic subjects and methods, says Barbiche. Therefore, instructing students in the most current, efficient methods for gathering knowledge was a key focal point.
After beginning Knovel-based training,
the students found the online resource very useful and much more efficient than other tools they wanted to use (i.e., Google, journal articles, etc.). Using the information they found through Knovel, the students found the solutions they needed. The students’ professor, Barbiche recalls, was also
impressed by the power and efficiency of Knovel.
"Today, the goal is not only to instill knowledge in students but to teach them to seek information and apply it." Jean-Marie Barbiche
The future of academics and industry will be essentially borderless. And nowhere is that fact more evident than in the growth of the Internet and its extensive network of information.
[T]he main expectation of employers is the ability to work in project mode using specialized tools from anywhere in the world, say Barbiche.
Knovel enables students to become familiar with this type of approach. By helping École Centrale students develop these problems solving skills, Barbiche ensures that today’s students uphold the school’s tradition of engineering leadership throughout the world, both online and off.
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