This project came to an end December 31st 2012. During my 9,5 work months 2009-2012 I have done many things, see work log where you see that my primary role has been to:

  • create knowledge om triple helix, focusing collaboration industry-academy, and present it mostly within Medea and Media Evolution
  • be open for contacts from industry and give advice on collaboration
  • be part of developing new events within Medea and Media Evolution: task forces, workshops, advisory groups etcetera

In my progress reports you find short descriptions of what the value of this project is in relation to the overall indicators and work packages. My work assigned to me has been to focus on industry and its view on collaboration and innovation with academy, more than the actual indicators, because more people have been involved doing these things to stimulate the creation of a cluster.

A draft for the final report for this project was discussed at workshop with Media Evolution, Netport and Medea November 2011. Yesterday, June 19th 2012, I participated in a workshop at Media Evolution aiming for finding results not visible in the reports and threads between projects. There and then I realised that my sketchy report should be available, as it is articulating threads in triple helix as innovation.

Because this project and the role assigned to me has been what it has, the “effect” of my work is up to the people taking part of it. So far it has been mostly within organisations. Now it can aso be everywhere. Even if my job is finished I will answer questions and engage in conversations you might have.

Sorry for it being in Swedish, hope that google translate can do the trick.




The triple helix thesis is an important basis for innovation that the European Union supports.

Starting point for the triple helix thesis, or the knowledge triangle as it is also called, is that collaboration between academia, industry and government is a good precondition for fostering innovation (Etzkowitz, 2002; Etzkowitz and Leydesdorff, Lissenburgh and Harding, 2000). Triple-helix is ​​a thesis, a perspective on innovation, where the emphasis is on:
– Commercialization (Asheim & Coenen, 2004; Leydesdorff, 2005; Leydesdorff & Etzkowitz, 2001; Shapira, 2002)
– Collaborative research (Best et al., 2003) and;
– Significance of the region (De Bruijn, 2004).

There is much research that supports that this type of cooperation will improve conditions for innovation, productivity and prosperity in a knowledge society (Campbell, 2005; Campbell, Koski, & Blumenthal., 2004; Etzkowitz, 2002; Leydesdorff, 2003; Shapira, 2002; Sutz, 1998).

The assumption is that a triple-helix-research partnership is best if you want to establish long-term organizational structures that allow short-term intensive collaborative experience. It is also supported by much research (Campbell, 2005; Etzkowitz, 2003; Langford, Hall, Josty, Matos, & Jacobson, 2005; Leydesdorff & Fritsch, 2005).

Regions has in research been identified as central to theories of innovation and economic development (De Bruijn, 2004). The idea is that the region as a place can become a local environment, where many of the “input” is available and where to share the work stimulated (Fritsch, 2002).

Doloreux and Parto (2004) argues that there are three key elements for regional innovation:

  1. That there are regional “communities” that share a knowledge and local resources of eg special skills in the labor market, suppliers, local learning processes, local traditions to work together and so on.
  2. That innovation is embedded in social relationships that develop over time according to culturally defined structures. It is often informal social relationships that determine a particular image and sense of belonging, which promotes the synergy and collective learning processes.
  3. That innovation occurs when a geographical concentration and proximity are present.

Regional innovation also occurs in what can be called urban clusters. They will provide access to the maximum flow of information and ideas, provide opportunities for cooperation, access to specialists, subcontractors and suppliers, the effectiveness of specific local services, the development of a local pool of specialized labor, lower risk and, more options and customer choice (Harmaakorpi , 2004).

In order to promote regional innovation lateral relationships across borders are required, rather than traditional hierarchical bureaucratic structures (Etzkowitz, 2001). Knowledge should flow and be available at the organization and industry level and also geographically.

Successful innovation also requires organizations that have the capacity to absorb, perceive bring in opportunities (Greve & Salaff, 2001). A large pool of ideas is preferrable (Aharonson et al., 2004).

There are many difficulties in creating triple-helix cooperation that meets all these criteria.

One challenge is that the triple helix thesis can be said to be contrary to academic freedom (Bekelman, Li, & Gross, 2003). It could also be that triple-helix affect education and learning in a problematic way (Gluck, Blumenthal, & Stoto, 1987). It is also important to know that the triple-helix collaboration can bring and carry financial
conflicts of interest (Campbell et al., 2004).

Within academia, there is growing opposition to research to be ordered from above. August 1, 2009 Swedish daily newspaper Dagens Nyheter writes about scientists in rebellion to eminent British scientists. I is published as an appeal to defend the freedom of research, because of a new policy from the British research councils, which required the researcher presents the future benefits of their projects. It is insisted on that such measures are not reflected in real break-through, measured in number of Nobel Prizes.

Triple-helix is ​​also a theory that links to more scientific research, that is to say that cooperation also will take place between two or more disciplines. The key is to prevent institutions to promote the isolation of disciplines (Dauphinée and Martin, 2000).

In the collaborative world of crowdsourcing and open innovation, grass roots innovation etcetera, triple-helix seems to be a a sensemaker of an infrastructure, aiming for a certain pluralistic and inclusive approach to differences to achieve innovation. Macro levels are well researched, but the micro practices are not. The value of the coming publications from this project is providing some glimpses of those micro practices.


Scandinavia as a World Leading Participatory Innovation System?

December 20, 2011

The trend in innovation for media development is collaborative production, consumption and produsage. Open innovation in particular linked to open source emerges as an important aspect. It explains that the more open source-oriented, the more distrust of authority, and more faith in open processes. There is a strong academic foundation in the form of Program […]

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My academic blogging as insight to knowledge production on media, innovation and participation

October 24, 2011

Communicating this project has been, well… a project of it’s own. It is no wonder because an important starting point for this project is contact/outreach/linkages to understand collaboration between academia, industry and government (the classic triple-helix triangle). Since starting August 17th 2009 I have explored how different forms of social networked media, mainly two different […]

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Meaningful communication of results

October 18, 2011

During these years (started August 2009) I have included communication as an important aspect of both understanding innovation and accomplishing some kind of collaborative knowledge production on the matter. Starting the project I tried to explore as many communication possibilities as I could: participating in conversation wherever I could, and was allowed and welcomed to. […]

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Research ethics

September 30, 2011

In academic research, ethics is an important part of the work conducted. There are several books and articles on the matter. In Sweden one important guideline for research ethics comes from the Swedish Research Council. This project is one part of MMSS1 FoU focusing on a study of local participatory innovation practices. Here I have […]

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Network by doing > testing beta results

September 14, 2011

Drawing on tentative results from six months work during 2009-2011, I will test the idea of “network by doing” by creating an event that takes place September 21st 2011. This event aims at connecting different women networks by, during a couple of hours, engage in Arduino-prototyping. It is an effort to: – Meet and enhance […]

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Exploring Twitter as a network site for research on and in social innovation

June 28, 2011

This is an abstract for the conference NordMedia 2011 being presented in August. In my work in this project I study local participatory innovation practices. A lot of people and institutions are wondering and pondering on where innovation takes place and how to understand different forms of innovation. In this paper I try to show […]

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Approaching the ‘co’

March 2, 2011

This project has a lot to do with ‘co’ as it being placed at MEDEA, a centre of co-production, and its focus on media, innovation and participation. In this text I will think a bit about the ‘co’ and its link to Mode 2 research. New knowledge production refers to a novel way of scientific […]

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Why this project exist

February 23, 2011

The question why is always interesting and hard at the same time. Why does this project exist? Why on earth put one researcher on studying local participatory innovation practices? Why? Answering this question on project relevance I will use the words of Helga Nowotny, Peter Scott and Michael Gibbons: Reliable knowledge can become socially robust […]

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