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No Researcher Is an Island: Collaboration in Higher Education Institutions
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Urban Planning and Environment, Urban and Regional Studies.
2013 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The developing knowledge economy affects organizations within the innovation system where higher education institutions (HEI) are regarded as a significant part. There is a large amount of research that focus on different aspects of collaboration such as the outcome, the process and its infrastructure. To emphasize HEIs role in the national and regional innovation systems concepts such as Mode 2 and Triple helix, and the Knowledge triangle, have developed. These concepts have also heavily influenced Swedish innovation policy.

 

This thesis is set to analyze collaboration work between Swedish HEIs and the public and private sectors, and to understand how collaboration: i) occurs in practice in research and undergraduate education; ii) is influenced by policy efforts, and; iii) influence HEI’s internal and external social capital building. Firstly, research and teaching links is analyzed to highlight the integration of collaboration, research and education within specific research profiles. This is because previous research has neglected collaboration and its effect on undergraduate education. Secondly, social capital theory is used as a framework for the analysis. Social capital theory is used to obtain a thorough understanding of individual researchers’ attitude to collaboration and participation in collaboration activities.

 

The results indicate that short term projects had long-term effects since it established new education programs and projects. Collaboration also effects undergraduate education through research profiles with their integration of research and education in groups within as well as outside the HEI. The results also show that social capital building through top steered initiatives is complex. In the HEIs there was no relation between researchers expressing a positive attitude towards different forms of collaboration and a high participation level in collaboration activities. This suggests that building of external social capital within HEIs is not related to the nature of the internal social capital. There was interfaculty differences in both the researchers’ attitude to collaboration activities and participation in collaboration activities. As expected, professors had more opportunities and ability for collaboration. They also indicated a resistance to use a central infrastructure for collaboration to build external social capital. The opposite was demonstrated for professors from the humanities who had little experience of collaboration. They still did not to use the infrastructure to a large extent. Suggestively policy makers should encourage a more efficient external social capital building through earmarked funding for collaboration on a department level rather than on the HEIs’ central level.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: KTH Royal Institute of Technology, 2013. , xi, 72 p.
Series
Trita-SOM , ISSN 1653-6126 ; 2013:10
Keyword [en]
Collaboration; External social capital; Higher Education Institutions; Innovation policy; Innovation system; Internal social capital; Research and teaching links
National Category
Sociology (excluding Social Work, Social Psychology and Social Anthropology)
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-127403ISBN: 978-91-7501-825-6 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-127403DiVA: diva2:643986
Public defence
2013-09-27, F3, Lindstedsvägen 26, KTH, Stockholm, 09:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2013-08-30 Created: 2013-08-29 Last updated: 2013-08-30Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Social capital enhancement through regional co-operation: a study of a swedish policy program
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Social capital enhancement through regional co-operation: a study of a swedish policy program
2008 (English)In: Romanian journal of regional science, ISSN 1843-8520, Vol. 2, no 1, 35-53 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
National Category
Civil Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-28614 (URN)
Note
QC 20110117Available from: 2011-01-17 Created: 2011-01-17 Last updated: 2013-08-30Bibliographically approved
2. Interaction between research and education: Can industry cooperation improve the link?
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Interaction between research and education: Can industry cooperation improve the link?
2009 (English)In: Tertiary Education and Management, ISSN 1358-3883, E-ISSN 1573-1936, ISSN 1358-3883, Vol. 15, no 2, 97-112 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This study attempts to provide a new perspective on current shifts in knowledge production through analysing the relationship between research and education. The study, based on interviews and questionnaires, focuses on the interaction within applied research centres with a close industry cooperation. The results suggest that the interaction between research and education benefits from a collaborative environment, since researchers hold positive attitudes towards integrating research, education and collaboration, and students are given the opportunity to work within applied research projects. The findings are discussed in terms of researchers' ability to handle their scholarly tasks of research, teaching, and collaboration, and the importance for acknowledging research collaborations from both research and teaching perspectives.

National Category
Civil Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-28612 (URN)10.1080/13583880902869570 (DOI)2-s2.0-75149193390 (Scopus ID)
Note

QC 20110117

Available from: 2011-01-17 Created: 2011-01-17 Last updated: 2017-12-11Bibliographically approved
3. Interfaculty differences in collaboration: A study of a multi faculty university
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Interfaculty differences in collaboration: A study of a multi faculty university
2013 (English)In: Studies in Regional Science, ISSN 1880-6465, Vol. 43, no 1, 47-60 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Prominent research has focused on collaboration and its change through the last decades, from international comparative approaches to relationships between public research organisations and the surrounding society. Within academia, research on collaboration has mostly concerned natural sciences, engineering and technology. Researchers from such disciplines generally possess a more positive attitude to collaboration activities. We aim to add to the research on collaboration with a focus on external and the nature of the internal social capital. This is done by quantitatively analysing a large number of researchers' attitude to collaboration and activity level through a smaller set of questions. The empirical design is exploratory and can be used as a base for the development of further research. The faculties of interest are humanities, social science, and natural science within a multi faculty university. The results demonstrate that professors and researchers from natural science have a more positive attitude towards collaboration. However, researchers from social science are significantly more engaged in collaboration activities than natural scientist. We conclude that the attitude to collaboration and actual participation in collaboration activities not necessarily correlates.

Keyword
Collaboration, Social science, Natural science, Humanities, Attitudes, Social capital
National Category
Civil Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-127433 (URN)10.2457/srs.43.47 (DOI)2-s2.0-84898459032 (Scopus ID)
Conference
JSRSAI (Japan Section of the Regional Science Association International) special session Academic Knowledge Commercialization, Universities and Regional Economic Development, Tokyo, 6-8 October 2012
Note

QC 20140625. Updated from manuscript to article in journal.

Available from: 2013-08-30 Created: 2013-08-30 Last updated: 2014-06-25Bibliographically approved
4. Professors’ attitude to collaboration and central infrastructure for collaboration: an analysis of social capital establishment within higher education institutions
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Professors’ attitude to collaboration and central infrastructure for collaboration: an analysis of social capital establishment within higher education institutions
2013 (English)In: Knowledge Commercialization and Valorization in Regional Economic Development, Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar Publishing, 2013, 85-110 p.Chapter in book (Other academic)
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar Publishing, 2013
Keyword
business and management, knowledge management, economics and finance, regional economics, innovation and technology, knowledge management, urban and regional studies, regional economics
National Category
Economics and Business
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-127453 (URN)10.4337/9781781004074.00012 (DOI)2-s2.0-84881793326 (Scopus ID)9781781004067 (ISBN)
Note

QC 20130830

Available from: 2013-08-30 Created: 2013-08-30 Last updated: 2013-08-30Bibliographically approved

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