To enable a knowledge flow from research to business and to work together, a co-creation model was developed at the University of Helsinki within a pilot project. In co-creation, problems are defined and solved in cooperation with companies and researchers. The researcher identifies the scientific challenges while the company identifies the economic potential. In the pilot, researchers were humanists and social scientists to bring a greater context to the problem.
Workshops are organised for researchers and companies where they engage in a dialogue. The dialogue is guided by a facilitator. The facilitator and the setting have an essential role in the success of the workshops. In the pilot project, six workshops, that lasted for three hours each, were organised with five companies participating. During the workshops, joint research interests could be identified.
The co-creation can be considered as a part of a product development loop. During the workshops, research questions are defined. After the workshops a research concept can be built which can finally convert into a product development project.
Some of the outcomes of the co-creation pilot has produced are spin-off activities, e.g. cooperation between one company and researcher has led to a research project where the company acts as a living lab. Moreover, the pilot has succeeded to connect humanities and social sciences with companies which doesn´t take place often. A guidebook on co-creation was also published and is available at the website below.
For Further information on the good practice, please see the website https://blogs.helsinki.fi/andaction/co-creation/