Guest lecture by Carsten Østerlund

Professor Carsten Østerlund from the School of Information Studies at Syracuse University will visit the Department of Informatics on week 39 and give a talk.

Carsten has his PhD from MIT, with Wanda Orlikowski as supervisor, and has worked with a range of empirical topics and methodological approaches. He has collaborated with several scholars (e.g. Paul Carlile, Kevin Crowston, and Margunn Aanestad).

In this talk, he will share insights from a recent study on citizen science/crowdsourced knowledge production with a focus on applying theoretical concepts from the sociomateriality tradition.

The event will take place on September 24th, from 9h to 10h30, in the Styrerommet (4118) of Ole-Johan Dahls hus. All welcome!

DIGENT establishes collaboration with blue chip corporations on master’s education

A student life in the blue chip companies Telenor, Schibsted, DNV GL and EVRY is now a reality for second-year Master’s students in Entrepreneurship and Innovation Management and the Business Development track of Digital økonomi og ledelse. The University of Oslo has entered into a new type of collaboration with these companies on the execution of significant innovation projects, as part of these Master’s programs.

Jens Petter Falck, Associate Professor and Program Counselor for one of the master’s programs, points out the importance of the projects:

“Through this collaboration, we gain access to high-quality relevant projects, and students get to experience the culture of innovation within large organizations and attractive potential employers”.

Organized as a mandatory course, ENT4460 Corporate Entrepreneurship Project, student groups operating as project teams will each carry out a predefined innovation project of significance within one of the corporate partners during the fall semester physically located at the respective corporate headquarter.

“The students at UIO will give us an opportunity to get new thoughts and ideas, in addition, I am sure they will learn a lot from experienced Telenor employees. This is a great opportunity for both Telenor and the students, and we really appreciate that they want to spend a semester with us at Fornebu”, says Petter-Børre Furberg, CEO of Telenor Norway.

The purpose of the course is to build the students’ in-depth understanding and hands-on experience with developing new or improved products or services within an established company. The first edition of the course is now well underway with the innovation projects.

“Through our collaboration with UiO, ties to the university are strengthened, and not least, we can ensure that research is directed towards areas of societal and business-critical importance in the future”, says Sven Størmer Thaulow, Schibsted’s Executive Vice President of Data & Technology.

According to the four corporate partners, this is the first time they have entered into a collaboration of this nature. You can find more information in the corporate homepages of Telenor, Schibsted, DNV GL and EVRY.

Introduction week for the new master students in Entrepreneurship

Week 34 was special for the new students of the Master in Entrepreneurship. Various ice-breaking activities took place throughout the week, so that the students had the opportunity to network and to get to know each other.

Lunch event during the Introduction week

Among the events organized, the main event was the Venture Sprint pitching. Students worked in groups and pitched their business ideas to a panel of judges comprising faculty members and 2nd year master students at the end of the week.

The business idea “Try It: Marketplace that allows companies to find test users for their new products” was considered as the best one. The best presentation was for the business pitch “Tip Takk: Application that allows restaurants to simplify their tips-payout to their staff”.

The Master in Entrepreneurship is a two-year full-time program offered by DIGENT. We welcome our new master students and wish them success in their studies!

Participation at the DIS conference 2019


Professor Alma Leora Culén and PhD candidate Jorun Børsting from DIGENT together with Assistant Professor William Odom from Simon Fraser University, wrote the paper entitled “Mediating Relatedness for Adolescents with ME: Reducing Isolation through Minimal Interactions with a Robot Avatar”. Jorun and Alma presented the work at the ACM conference on Designing Interactive Systems (DIS) 2019, in San Diego this June.

The paper explored strategies for technology design to support relatedness and reduce the sense of isolation among adolescents suffering from Myalgic Encephalomyelitis. This health condition reduces normal functioning severely, including the ability to be social. More on the condition, for interested readers is here. A robot avatar was placed in the lives of ill adolescents for about a year, which provided an incredibly rich set of data and insights. Based on the findings, the authors propose a set of strategies to design technologies that support relatedness with a minimal level of interactivity and engagement. The paper is available online.

The paper presentation at DIS (photo: Will Odom)

DIS is the premier international and interdisciplinary conference encompassing a wide range of issues related to the design and deployment of interactive systems. The conference brings together researchers, designers, artists, systems engineers, and anyone involved in the design of interactive systems to debate and shape the future of interaction systems research, design, and practice. The theme for DIS 2019 was Contesting Borders and Intersections, aiming to explore the frictions, separation and margins in conjunction with opportunities and imaginaries of possible alternatives.

The conference had a number of very interesting workshops and Jorun and Alma had joint papers on two of them. One of the workshops had the theme Exploring, Defining, & Advancing Community-Driven Design for Social Impact and was organized by Eric Hekler, Jennifer Taylor, Steven Dow, M.C. Schraefel, Sayali Phatak, Don Norman, Faren Grant and Dana Lewis. Their position paper was entitledCommunity Involvement in Social Innovation for Health”. The second workshop was on A sample of One: First-person Research Methods in HCI and was organized by Andrés Lucero, Audrey Desjardins, Carman Neustaedter, Kristina Höök, Marc Hassenzahl and Marta Cecchinato. Their position paper was “SlowBreath: First-Person Research for Self-Management of Myalgic Encephalomyelitis”.

The Community Building Workshop (photo: DIS staff)


PhD Fellowships available at the research centre INTRANSIT

Two PhD positions are currently available as part of the Centre for the Study of Innovation Policy for Industrial Transformation, Sustainability and Digitalization (INTRANSIT).


Launched in May this year, this interdisciplinary research centre is a collaboration between TIK Centre for Technology, Innovation and Culture (UiO), DIGENT Digitalization and Entrepreneurship (UiO), SINTEF Digital, and the Copernicus Institute of Sustainable Development (Utrecht University).

INTRANSIT seeks to address questions such as:

How can we foster industrial transformation towards a smarter and more sustainable Norwegian economy? What are the most important barriers and drivers of industrial transformation? What is the role of incumbent industries in transitions and to what extent is the growth of new industrial niches connected to diversification of existing industries?

One of the PhD positions is in Entrepreneurship, which will be based at the DIGENT section. This position aims to study the roles and interaction dynamics between established and entrepreneurial firms in transition processes.

The other PhD position is in Innovation studies and based at TIK. This position is connected to the study of transition pressures and pathways in Norwegian industries.

Both PhD positions should actively contribute to the INTRANSIT research centre. The positions are for a period of 3 years, with the possibility of extension if participating in teaching and/or administrative activities.

Publication in the Journal Research Policy

PhD candidate Raissa Pershina and Associate Professor Birthe Soppe from DIGENT together with Professor Taran Thune from TIK wrote a paper titled “Bridging analog and digital expertise: Cross-domain collaboration and boundary-spanning tools in the creation of digital innovation”, which was recently accepted for publication in Research Policy.

Using the development of digital serious games as the empirical setting, the paper explores how specialists rooted in digital and analog knowledge domains engage in cross-domain collaboration to jointly create innovative digital products.

The paper is now available online.


Expertise in digital technologies is necessary, but rarely sufficient to generate digital innovation. The purpose of this paper is to explore how specialists rooted in digital and analog knowledge domains engage in cross-domain collaboration to jointly create digital innovation. Our analysis cross-examines the literature on knowledge integration and coordination by examining the role of boundary-spanning tools in fusing divergent types of knowledge. The empirical setting for our study is the development of digital serious games, a novel breed of digital learning products whose creation involves a wide range of gaming/digital and learning/analog expertise. Drawing on an in-depth qualitative study, we find that boundary-spanning tools such as prototypes, mockups, and whiteboards serve as important knowledge bridges buttressing the overall innovation process, enabling diverse experts to increasingly align and integrate their divergent thought worlds and knowledge domains. Furthermore, we find that the alternative interplay among digital and non-digital tools supports the gradual transformation of digital and analog expertise into a novel digital format. Taken together, our results explicate how boundary-spanning tools facilitate collaborative work among specialists rooted in diverse digital and non-digital knowledge domains. Our findings contribute to the literature on knowledge integration and coordination in cross-domain collaboration and digital innovation.