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Aalto University School of Business Master's Theses are now in the Aaltodoc publication archive (Aalto University institutional repository)
School of Business | Department of Marketing and Management | Organization and Management | 2009
Thesis number: 12122
Science-industry interaction: a case study of an innovative ecosystem in Helsinki
Author: Räsänen, Rami-Samuli
Title: Science-industry interaction: a case study of an innovative ecosystem in Helsinki
Year: 2009  Language: eng
Department: Department of Marketing and Management
Academic subject: Organization and Management
Index terms: johtaminen; management; organisaatio; organization; innovaatiot; innovations; tiede; science; Helsinki; Helsinki
Pages: 80
Key terms: innovation; science; industry; local innovation system; innovative ecosystem
The study focuses on describing and identifying key actors and their relationships of a local innovation system in Helsinki. In addition, the study scrutinizes the forms, scope and motivations of interaction between research organizations and industry. Although the study focuses especially on the researchers’ perspective of interaction, also the company point of view is included to the study.

The study is conducted by combining literature review and analysis of qualitative data from a previous research project regarding research organizations connections to industry. The literature review scrutinizes different innovation models, explanations for company agglomerations, innovation system models, universities significance for local innovation systems and different mechanisms of knowledge transfer from the university to industry. In addition, previous studies of local innovation systems are reviewed. The empirical data consists of interviews of 20 persons. 18 of the interviewees represent different research organizations based on Helsinki and 2 represent high tech companies whose headquarters are located in the Helsinki Metropolitan Area. 11 of the research organizations’ interviewees represent University of Helsinki, while the rest 7 researchers represent University of Industrial Arts and sectoral research organizations, which are based on Helsinki.

The empirical data is analyzed regarding three different themes: researchers’ point of view of science-industry interaction, company point of view to interaction and geographical dimensions of science-industry interaction. In the section analyzing researchers the focus is on researchers’ motivations to cooperate, then the key activities are studied as well as views of spin-off companies and problems regarding science-industry interaction. The company section focuses on reasons for interaction, how the cooperation is arranged and managed. In the chapter analyzing geographical dimensions of cooperation the study focuses on connections to local, national and global networks.

The study demonstrates that local research units do cooperate with industry but the time difference between basic and applied research can be problematic. In addition, the study demonstrates that many of the factors needed for local innovation system to exist are present in Helsinki. However, the study also supports the view that the system boundaries are not possible to define as actors of the local system are strongly connected to local and international innovation networks. Especially the international connections are valued by the research units.
Master's theses are stored at Learning Centre in Otaniemi.