Yhteiskehittäminen EU-rahoitetuissa hankkeissa
The European Union (EU) promotes innovation through its research funding programmes. They offer opportunities for the co-creation of knowledge that involve diverse groups of academics, businesses and public organizations in project consortia. Projects focus in sharing insights and experiences, though participants may have conflicting interests. This study aims to gain understanding of knowledge co-creation for innovation in funded projects from the viewpoint of multi-stakeholder communication. There is a particular focus on communication with end-users. The topic is studied from four theoretical perspectives: the co-creation of knowledge, innovation networks, knowledge development processes and the resilience of complex social networks. The context are eight EU-funded projects aimed at research and innovation.
According to the findings common development goals serve as the basis for partners to engage in sharing insights and experiences while developing knowledge for innovation. The perspective of the co-creation of knowledge highlights an intensive interaction between many diverse actors engaging in building relationships and trust that enable jointly working on a common problem. The perspective of innovation networks highlights that comprehensive solutions may require different roles from actors facilitated by structures and communication expertise. The perspective of knowledge development processes points to evolving input, throughput and output communication when engaging various stakeholders, especially end-users, adapting participation strategies over time. The perspective of resilience of complex social networks emphasizes agile project communication to address vulnerabilities through interdependencies.
Research and innovation projects bring complex processes, which call in- teractions among diverse groups of stakeholders. This study adds to the overall body of knowledge on co-creation in innovation networks and, in particular, collaboration within EU-funded research and innovation project consortia.