Innovation Research – From Origin to Current Frontier – IØ8902

Course Organization

The NORSI course Innovation research – From origin to current frontier – IØ9802 aims to provide a set of advanced insights into the field of innovation studies focusing on theoretical developments as well as strategic innovation managment.


NORSI Institutions: The course is part of Nordic Research School on Innovation and Entreprenurship (NORSI)This NORSI course is organized and co-created in collaboration between NTNU, HVL and UiO-TIK. The course will be held at UIO and the ECTS is provided by NTNU.

When: 19 September – 23 September 2022

Location: University of Oslo (UIO), Oslo

Application Form: Application Form – IØ8902 
Application Deadline: 23rd of August 2022

Level of course: Ph.D. course

Type of course
: Introduction and specialization course for students studying entrepreneurship and innovation for their PhD.

Language: English

ECTS credits:
 7.5 ECTS accredited by NTNU

PhD students presentations: 15 minutes max (including Q&A)

Workshop with participants: “Future challenges for innovation studies”.


Course responsible

Professor Fulvio Castellacci, University of Oslo – Centre for Technology, Innovation and Culture (UiO- TIK)



Professor Lars Coenen, Western Norway University of Applied Sciences (HVL)

NORSI Director and Professor Roger Sørheim, Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) 


Questions regarding course:, and















The assignment for the innovation course is an academic paper. Max. length is 5000 words + references. Use your supervisor for advice and guidance before you submit your paper. We encourage you to link the paper to your own PhD project, however we expect you to make use of one or more perspectives taught during the course.
Deadline for paper assignment: 31st December.






The course aims to provide a set of advanced insights into innovation research spanning from foundational themes to the most recent developments of the field. The competitiveness of firms, economic growth and societal sustainability in general depend on the ability to introduce innovative products, processes and services. Innovation research is typically divided into systems approaches on the one hand, emphasizing the networked, distributed and embedded nature of innovation and its impact on economic growth, societal sustainability and other meso/macro outcomes and a corporate and a managerial approach, focusing in particular on strategic issues and innovation dynamics at the micro-level. Both approaches deal with how processes of innovation occur at different but related levels of aggregation.

Traditionally, the system approach has dealt primarily with the allocation of resources to innovation, organizational and institutional dynamics and its macroeconomic effects (e.g. the relation between innovation on the one hand and a country’s competitiveness and economic growth on the other). More recently, greater attention is also given to the wider effects of innovation capabilities and processes on themes such as social cohesion and/or environmental sustainability. Increasingly the centrality of innovation for numerous socio-economic and sustainability-related objectives is also recognized by policy-makers at various levels, for example in relation to productivity, ‘mission’ and societal challenges. Within the systems approach the innovation process at the micro level (e.g. in firms) has been treated more or less as a ‘black box’. Innovation is a complex and dynamic organizational process – with repeating cycles of divergent and convergent activities – that both depends on and spurs of organizational learning and adaptation.

Taking a strategic perspective on these processes is important to grasp opportunities and hindrances, as well as identifying the role of intentional action. Interest in management of innovation has traditionally centered on firm-internal aspects of processes such as, for instance, how collaboration and interaction among specialized professionals take place in the creation of innovation; how to deal with unavoidable uncertainty involved; and the path dependency in skills and resources. In recent years there has been a surge in interest among scholars and practitioners in methods that allow the firm systematically to source its inputs externally. Innovation that originate from sources external to the firm has emerged as an important phenomenon and has been associated with labels such as open innovation, user innovation, crowd sourcing, and open source. These trends have also given rise to novel and so far immature research agendas that promise to enhance our understanding of the processes and sources of innovation in the years to come.

Course material and teaching activities

Scientific articles and selected literature – for part 1 please see schedule.

The course is scheduled as two intensive seminars, as a combination of lectures, seminars and paper writing exercises




Learning objectives



  • To provide insight in innovation research from its origin to recent development in the field.
  • To provide specific knowledge about “the systems of innovation” approach
  • To provide specific knowledge about managerial approaches to innovation research
  • Candidates should be capable to reflect on innovation research on both macro and microlevel (and how different perspectives are interlinked).
  • Candidates following the course should capable to reflect and position their own research within the field of innovation research.





Course Program



Teaching schedule

Monday 19 September: Auditorium 3, Eilert Sundts hus, UiO


  • 09.30-10.00: Introduction (Fulvio Castellacci & Lars Coenen)
  • 10.00-11.30: The evolution of science policy and innovation studies (Ben Martin)
  • 12.30-14.00: Mainstream and evolutionary perspectives to study innovation and economic growth (Fulvio Castellacci)
  • 14.00-15.00: PhD students’ presentations: Part I



Tuesday 20 September: Undervisningsrom 2, Georg Sverdrups hus, UiO

  • 10.00-11.30: Innovation at the firm-level: organizational capabilities and strategies (Marte Cecilie Wilhelmsen Solheim)
  • 12.30-14.00: Open innovation and networks (Marte Cecilie Wilhelmsen Solheim)
  • 14.00-15.00: PhD students’ presentations: Part II


Wednesday 21 September: Room 1004, Lucy Smiths hus, UiO


  • 10.00-11.30: Industrial dynamics and sectoral systems (Fulvio Castellacci)
  • 12.30-14.00: Regional systems and the geography of innovation (Lars Coenen)
  • 14.00-15.00: PhD students’ presentations: Part III


Thursday 22 September: Room 1004, Lucy Smiths hus, UiO

  • 10.00-11.30: R&D and innovation policy: rationales and foundations (Fulvio Castellacci)
  • 12.30-14: Green transition, mission-oriented and transformative innovation policy (Lars Coenen)
  • 14.00-15.00: PhD students’ presentations: Part IV 


Friday 23 September: Room 1004, Lucy Smiths hus, UiO
Future research

  • 10.00-11.30: Fifteen Challenges for Innovation Studies (Ben Martin)
  • 12.30-14.00: Workshop with participants 

Reading list

Lecture: The evolution of science policy and innovation studies
(Ben Martin)

  • BR Martin (2012). The evolution of science policy and innovation studies, Research Policy 41 (7), 1219-1239.
  • Fagerberg, H Landström, BR Martin (2012). Exploring the emerging knowledge base of ‘the knowledge society’, Research Policy 41 (7), 1121-1131.


Lecture: Mainstream and evolutionary perspectives to study innovation and economic growth (Fulvio Castellacci)

  • Castellacci, F. (2007). Evolutionary and new growth theories: Are they converging? Journal of Economic Surveys 21: 585-627.
  • Edquist, C. (2004). “Systems of Innovation: Perspectives and Challenges” in Fagerberg, J., Mowery, D., and Nelson, R (eds.) Oxford Handbook of Innovation, Oxford: Oxford University Press, p. 181-208.
  • Fagerberg, Jan (2003). ‘Schumpeter and the revival of evolutionary economics: an appraisal of the literature’, Journal of Evolutionary Economics, 13 (2), pp 125-59.


Lecture: Innovation at the firm-level: organizational capabilities and strategies  (Marte Cecilie Wilhelmsen Solheim)

  • Amabile, T. (1988). A model of creativity and innovation in organizations. Research in Organizational Behavior 10: 123-167.
  • Kanter, R.M. (2000). When a thousand flowers bloom: Structural, collective, and social conditions for innovation. In: R. Swedberg (ed.), Entrepreneurship: The social science view. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  • March, J. (1991), Exploration and exploitation in organizational learning. Organization Science 2 (1): 71-87.
  • Solheim, M.C.W. and Herstad, S.J. (2018). The Differentiated Effects of Human Resource Diversity on Corporate Innovation.International Journal of Innovation and Technology Management, 15(5).

Optional: Listen in to Adam Grant` discussing “Originals”:



Lecture: Open innovation and networks (Marte Cecilie Wilhelmsen Solheim)

  • Cohen, W. M. and D. A. Levinthal (1990). Absorptive capacity: A newperspective on learning and innovation. Administrative Science Quarterly 35: 128-152.
  • Katila, R., and Ahuja, G. (2002). Something Old, Something New: A Longitudinal Study of Search Behavior and New Product Introduction. Academy of Management Journal, 45(8): 1183-1194.
  • Laursen, K. and A. Salter (2006). Open for innovation: The role of openness in explaining innovation performance among UK manufacturing firms. Strategic Management Journal 27: 131-150.
  • Solheim, M.C.W. and Fitjar, R.D. (2018). Foreign Workers Are Associated with Innovation, But Why? International Networks as a Mechanism. International Regional Science Review 41(3): 311-334.


Optional, in relation to Cohen and Levinthal, see also:

  • Zahra, S. A. and G. George (2002). Absorptive capacity: A review, reconceptualization, and extension. Academy of Management Review 27(2): 185-203.


Lecture: Industrial dynamics and sectoral systems (Fulvio Castellacci)

  • Castellacci, F. (2008). Technological paradigms, regimes and trajectories: Manufacturing and service industries in a new taxonomy of sectoral patterns of innovation. Research Policy, 37 (6-7): 978-994.
  • Dosi, G. (1982). Technological Paradigms and Technological Trajectories: A Suggested Interpretation of the Determinants and Directions of Technical Change. Research Policy, 11: 147-162.
  • Pavitt, K. (1984). Sectoral patterns of technical change: towards a taxonomy and a theory. Research Policy, 13 (6): 343-373.


Lecture: Regional systems and the geography of innovation (Lars Coenen)

  • Asheim, B. and Gertler M. (2005). The geography of innovation: regional innovation systems, in Fagerberg J., Mowery D. C. and Nelson R. R. (Eds) The Oxford Handbook of Innovation, pp. 291–317. Oxford University Press, Oxford.
  • Coenen, L., & Morgan, K. (2020). Evolving geographies of innovation: existing paradigms, critiques and possible alternatives. Norsk Geografisk Tidsskrift-Norwegian Journal of Geography, 74(1), 13-24.
  • Shearmur, R., Carrincazeaux, C., & Doloreux, D. (2016). The geographies of innovations: Beyond one-size-fits-all. In Handbook on the Geographies of Innovation (pp. 1-16). Edward Elgar Publishing.


Lecture: R&D and innovation policy: rationales and foundations (Fulvio Castellacci)

  • Castellacci, F. (2008). Innovation and the competitiveness of industries: Comparing the mainstream and evolutionary approaches. Technological Forecasting and Social Change.
  • Edler, J. & Fagerberg, J. (2017). Innovation policy: what, why, and how, Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Volume 33, Number 1, pp. 2-23.
  • Fagerberg, J. (2017). Innovation policy: Rationales, lessons and challenges. Journal of Economic Surveys.
  • Martin, B. (2016). R&D policy instrument: A review of what we do and don’t know. Industry and Innovation.


Lecture: Green transition, mission-oriented and transformative innovation policy (Lars Coenen)

  • Mazzucato, M. (2018). Mission-oriented innovation policies: challenges and opportunities. Industrial and Corporate Change, 27(5), pp.803-815.
  • Schot, J. and Steinmueller, W.E., (2018). Three frames for innovation policy: R&D, systems of innovation and transformative change. Research Policy, 47(9), pp.1554-1567.+ commentaries


  • Fagerberg, J. (2018). Mobilizing innovation for sustainability transitions: A comment on transformative innovation policy. Research Policy, 47(9), 1568-1576.
  • Giuliani, E. (2018). Regulating global capitalism amid rampant corporate wrongdoing—Reply to “Three frames for innovation policy”. Research Policy, 47(9), 1577-1582.


Lecture: Fifteen Challenges for Innovation Studies (Ben Martin)

  • Fagerberg, J., Martin, B. R. and Andersen, E. S. (eds.) (2013). Innovation Studies – Evolution and Future Challenges, Oxford University Press, Oxford.
  • B.R. Martin, (2016). ‘Twenty Challenges for Innovation Studies’, Science and Public Policy, 43, pp. 432–450.

Date & Location

Start date: 19/09/2022
Date physical: 19 September - 23 September 2022
Location: University of Oslo