Such a school, envisioned as one of the largest development projects in the city’s history, could transform the local economy and help burnish Mayor Bloomberg’s image as a financial steward.

Beaker_BlueThe mayor of New York does not usually take time from his schedule to mingle with academic deans from Finland. But there was Michael R. Bloomberg at the Metropolitan Museum of Art recently, trying to sell the foreign visitors on his next big idea: a top-flight applied sciences school for the city.

The idea is one of the more imaginative proposals to come out of Mr. Bloomberg’s City Hall, but it may also be among the riskiest. The city has pledged to offer capital and public land to the university that crafts a winning proposal; 27 institutions — including Columbia, Stanford and the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology — have signaled their interest.

The idea has piqued the attention of the academic world, which has rarely seen a city so eager to recruit an institution of higher education. And the mayor’s personal involvement appears to be a significant factor.

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Source: Javier C. Hernandez | The New York Times