Innovation in private and public sector services (INTOP)


Sverre Herstad, Inland Norway
University of Applied Sciences (HiNN)
 – Course responsible
Professor Atle Hauge, HiNN
Professor Rolf Rønning, HiNN
Professor Lars Fuglsang, Roskilde University & HiNN
Professor Per Skålén, Karlstad University & HiNN
Stephen Osborne, University of Edinburgh Business School & HiNN

Course details

Time: August 27th– 31st 2018
Place: Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences, Campus Lillehammer
ECTS: 7.5 with main course paper approved (10 with secondary course paper approved)
Course type: Norsi partner course
Registration deadline: 31 May 2018


The development, provision and use of services constitute a large and growing proportion of economic activity. For one, it is increasingly acknowledged that industries traditionally thought of as manufacturers of goods are providing not physical artefacts but a ‘service’ to their customers. Moreover, growth in the involvement of services industries in international trade due to technological and regulatory change has gone hand in hand with employment growth occurring foremost outside the domains of traditional manufacturing industries. While this has been particularly pronounced in the ‘new technology based services’ that emerged from the ICT revolution, the last decades have also witnessed vibrant growth dynamics in creative and cultural industries, in tourism and in traditional business services such as finance and management consultancy. These economic sectors are important in their own right. Moreover, they provide firms outside the services sectors with knowledge and complementary
capabilities, and serve as nodes in innovation networks that operate at different spatial scales. Thus, the emergence and growth of these sectors is integral to an industrial landscape where inter-sector knowledge flows and combinatorial knowledge bases are essential to the dynamics of territorial economies. As a result, it is becoming increasingly important for research and policy to understand the intrinsic characteristics of services innovation. This applies as well to the public sector, which in most European countries faces vast challenges because globalisation, unemployment and demographic change creates a mismatch between the potential for
growth in tax incomes, and the growing demand for health and care services that follow in the wake of aging populations. Moreover, the demands put on public research and education policy, and on industrial policy more generally, by grand societal challenges are perhaps unprecedented. This translates into a need for public sector innovation, i.e. into a need to stimulate beneficial change in policies, institutions and the services they provide.

Purpose and content

Against this background, the purpose of the PhD course is to give students insight into the current theories and research of innovation in services, in both private and public sector, with emphasis on commonalities and differences between the two. It provides an overview of the service research field and different scholarly traditions within it. This includes how they relate to the broader field of innovation studies. Based on this, it addresses ongoing discussions of what public and private service innovations are and how they are created, organized and disseminated. Topics that will be covered include intrinsic characteristics of services provision, the importance of ‘front end’ innovations, and patterns of innovation collaboration, including public-private partnerships. Innovations, processes and outcome in private-sector services will be illuminated by
studies of knowledge intensive business services and the culture industry. Furthermore, the course will examine intrinsic characteristics and the particular value context of public-sector innovation. Finally, questions related to the social implications of the services economy will be raised.

Learning outcomes

The course will give students knowledge of current research and research challenges in the study of public as well as private service innovation. It will impart to the participants an analytical understanding of service innovation, how public and private perspectives are intertwined, but can nonetheless be distinguished. The course aims to give the participants knowledge of a range of relevant methods and techniques that can be used to study innovation in services, and enable them to formulate research problems, conduct research and to contribute to the field.


The course consists of interactive lectures, student presentations and discussions.


The course will take place over five days, each of which are dedicate to different areas of research. The first day will concentrate on state of the art in research on services innovation. The second will focus on the concept of a ‘Service-Dominant Logic’. The third day deals with innovation in knowledge intensive business services and in culture ndustries. The fourth day is dedicated to innovation in public services, while the topic of the last day will be public value and democracy.
Program for download (PDF).


The course is relevant for all PhD students studying innovation in relation to service innovation and public innovation.


Participants must read the course literature before the course. Participants must also prepare an outline of their thesis work and must be prepared for discussing the relevance of the course literature to the thesis.


Active participation in the course, the reading of the entire course literature and a presentation of an outline of the PhD project is required. In order to obtain the 7.5 ECTS points, the participant need to submit and have approved a paper of 3500-5000 words based on the course literature, preferably on the topic of the thesis.
Students can also write an additional paper on innovation in services for an extra 2.5 ECTS points. This extra paper should be written a short review 1-3 articles, demonstrating how research questions can be developed from the literature.


Completed application form with a 2-3 page description of the applicant’s PhD project must be sent by email no later than May 31st 2018 to Randi Kvamme Bjørnestad ( ) with ‘INTOP 2018’ in the subject field. Applicants should indicate whether they want to follow the complete course (all five days).
Please use HINN’s application form.


Participation in the course is free for PhD-students enrolled in Norwegian Research School in Innovation (NORSI), but participants have to cover their own travel and subsistence expenses. For persons outside NORSI the fee is 3500 NOK in addition to travel and subsistence expenses.

Literature and detailed programme

The final program and reading list is now available.
Program for download.

Date & Location

Start date: 27/08/2018
Date physical: August 27th– 31st 2018
Location: Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences, Campus Lillehammer