No Researcher Is an Island: Collaboration in Higher Education Institutions
2013 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
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.
Trita-SOM , ISSN 1653-6126 ; 2013:10
Collaboration; External social capital; Higher Education Institutions; Innovation policy; Innovation system; Internal social capital; Research and teaching links
Sociology (excluding Social Work, Social Psychology and Social Anthropology)
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-127403ISBN: 978-91-7501-825-6OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-127403DiVA: diva2:643986
2013-09-27, F3, Lindstedsvägen 26, KTH, Stockholm, 09:00 (English)
Baycan, Tuzin, Professor
Westlund, Hans, Professor
List of papers