How University-Industry Collaboration in Mixed Team Creates Value in the Front End of Innovation?

DS 81: Proceedings of NordDesign 2014, Espoo, Finland 27-29th August 2014

Year: 2014
Editor: Miko Laakso, Kalevi Ekman
Author: Polvinen, Kirsi; Berg, Pekka
Series: NordDESIGN
Institution: Aalto University, Finland
Section: Collaboration, communication and co-creation in design and development
Page(s): 146-153
ISBN: 978-1-904670-58-2


Companies’ collaboration with external partners is increasingly important in innovation management, and collaboration with academia is a natural part of the development. This paper focuses on university-industry collaboration in the front-end of innovation, where empirical research is still limited. In this preliminary study company cases are presented in a course setting having a unique mixed team approach. Experiences of such approach from company representatives’ point of view are presented in this paper as well as some promoting and preventing factors for such collaboration. According to the results of the study, choosing a suitable topic of the industry project and the role and commitment that corporate people take in the mixed team are crucial for collaboration and for a successful outcome. Main value of such university-industry collaboration for the companies is obtained through getting new ways of thinking and acting.

Keywords: University-industry collaboration, mixed team, front end


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