The following projects were funded:

Science and Images about Contemporary Practices in Innovation and Entrepreneurship

Team members:

Maureen McKelvey, University of Gothenburg
Olof Zaring, University of Gothenburg 


Innovation and Entrepreneurship represent a rapidly growing field for scholarly work but they are also areas that have attracted much public debate, to stimulate society and the economy. We hope that this initiative through a series of workshops and a book publication can help strengthen the visibility within Sweden of the long-standing contributions of SCANCOR to scientific debate, and also impact younger scholars in the field.

After Method in Organization Studies -­‐ an international collaboration for the discussion and development of epistemology and methodology in performativity theory in organization and management research

Photo: Johan Sandström, 2013

Team members

Lucia Crevani, KTH, the Royal Institute of Technology
Ulla Eriksson‐Zetterkvist, GRI
Anette Hallin, Stockholm UNiversity School of Business
Kajsa Lindberg, GRI
Viviane Sergi, ESG UQAM, Montreal, Canada

After method-workshop at Stockholm University School of Business

About 70 people had signed up for the "After methods-workshop", arranged by ass prof Anette Hallin, ass prof Lucia Crevani and prof Tommy Jensen on October 21st at Stockholm University School of Business. The full-day workshop, sponsored by Scancor/Stanford university, FORTE and the Management, Organization and Society-section at Stockholm University School of Business, generated a lot of interesting discussion concerning the central question: How are we to do social science research in a world of flows and constant transformation?

The issue of constant change is key in "process ontology" which was described and detailed in the mini-lecture given by ass prof Viviane Sergi (UQAM, Montréal) and a foundation for the day. In his ensuing speech, prof Hervé Corvellec (Lund University/GRI) argued for methodology as being the ethics of theorizing; hence a key dimension of responsible research practice. Sebastian Abrahamsson (postdoc, Univ of Amsterdam), provided an illustration from his own research on food waste, when showing how different realities are built on various situated concerns; a kind of methodological approach, which opens up for the understanding of fluidity and exploring multiplicity. How we may use writing in order to explore multiplicity of meaning was the topic of Jenny Helin's talk (postdoc, Uppsala university) who argued for writing as inquiry and for "writing of the not yet thought".

Aiming at creating as much interactivity among the participants as possible, those present were invited to share thoughts, comments and questions, not only orally in the discussion-sessions, but also through the writing of post-it-notes that were posted on the wall of the room, and returned to during the panel-discussion that finished the day (with ass prof Karin Berglund, prof Tommy Jenssen and ass prof Elena Raviola). The day filled a much appreciated need to discuss methodological issues, and may be followed-up in a second "After method"-workshop in the fall of 2014.

For more information, contact Anette Hallin:

Explaining Interest Group Organizational Design in Nascent Policy Fields

Team members:

Darren Halpin (Australian National University, SCANCOR Alumni 2011); Kurt Sandholtz (Brigham Young University); Anthony Nownes (University of Tennessee).


From time to time new policy fields open up. New terrain on which no clear policy public exists and no 'natural' set of organised interests prevails. It is well understood that new policy fields often catalyse the formation of new interest groups. This project probes how these new interest groups settle on organizational designs. Do they emulate designs that are 'naturally occurring' in surrounding policy fields? Do they innovate and create new forms? And what might explain 'choice' over designs? To address these questions, this research collaboration seeks to integrate the theories and methods of organizational social studies with the interest group literature in political science.

"Welcome to the Hotel California": Strangers and Hospitable Organizations

Team members:

Silviya Svejenova, Copenhagen Business School

Gregoire Croidieu, Grenoble Ecole de Management

Renate Meyer, WU-Wien


In this paper we seek to unravel an empirical conundrum: What are the mechanisms that enable pluralism in a homogeneous organization, and how do they contribute to its vitality? We address the conundrum by examining the case of SCANCOR and providing an outsiders-as-insiders’, i.e. a strangers’ view of it, particularly of its pluralism and strangeness. Drawing insights from the case, we put forward a notion and a template previously not discussed in the literature – the hospitable organization – which, when institutionalized, allows the balancing of uniformity and exclusivity with pluralism and openness to strangers. We posit five mechanisms that facilitate the functioning of hospitable organizations and contribute to sustaining their vitality: (1) unified form for diverse content; (2) minimum structure for maximum collaboration; (3) inclusive exclusivity, (4) decreased visibility for increased freedom, and (5) mixing degrees of strangeness for normality. We add to the study of organizations by putting forward some preliminary ideas on the hospitable organization and discussing conditions for its applicability to other organizing situations, beyond the case of SCANCOR. We also extend the notions of stranger and home-comer to the context of formal organizations.

Hospital reforms in comparative perspective – the challenge of changing accountability relations

Team members:

Prof. Per Laegreid, University of Bergen; Assoc. Prof. Haldor Byrkjeflot, University of Oslo; Director of Research Karsten Vrangbaek, Danish Institute for Government Research; Lecturer Paola Mattei, University of Oxford; and Dr. Simon Neby, Rokkan Centre University of Bergen.

The meeting was linked to the research project ‘Reforming the Welfare State. Accountability, Democracy and Management’ funded by the Norwegian Research Council for the period 2011-2013 and headed by professor Per Lægreid. He was a visiting scholar at SCANCOR from January to June 2012.  This is a comparative project aiming at studying how administrative reforms in three welfare state sectors (hospitals, welfare administration and immigration) are affecting the accountability relations, especially the trade off between political and managerial accountability. The project addresses how recent welfare state reforms have affected political governance and the relationship between the state and its citizens. Such reforms have often focused on  managerial accountability, neglecting the critical issue of how to maintain and develop mechanisms for democracy and  political accountability. This will be done by addressing formal changes in accountability relations as well as actual changes in these tree areas in three countries, Norway, Denmark and Germany. The project has partners from Copenhagen, Potsdam University and Oxford University. One aim behind the project is to examine if there is a Nordic model or if the differences are bigger between different areas than between different countries. This project has a strong Nordic comparative component and fits well into the Scancor research field.

Nobel Prizes as breakthrough innovators: in search for patterns of emergence and impact across fields.

Team members:

Dr. Katarina Larsen, KTH - Royal Institute of Technology; Asst. Prof. Laura Frigotto, University of Trento; PhD Candidate Nandini Roy, Stanford University; and Dr. Jenny Johansson, Stanford University.

The project was presented at the Scancor Monday seminar on 19th November 2012, and the ongoing research was discussed.

We chose to focus on discoveries and inventions that have been awarded the Nobel Prize for contribution to development of measurement technique that have many areas of applications. The case of Paul Lauterbur, who was awarded the Nobel Prize together with Sir Peter Mansfield in 2003 for discoveries concerning Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI), was presented and discussed at the seminar. The focus is on discovery processes and development of new tools and instrumentation involving communities of scientists in physics, medicine and imaging development for applications in medicine to diagnose physical conditions and diseases including cancer and Alzheimer’s Disease, as well as in the rehabilitation of sports injuries. The aim is to trace the evolution of a scientist’s knowledge, institutional and collaborator networks in different phases of the Laureate’s career.

The methodological approach used combines narratives of the discovery process (written by Laureates themselves, in scientific papers and in scholarly reviews), co-authorship data and semantic networks. This includes analyses at the level of organizations and individuals, relating to advances in technology and evolving relationships between research teams across and within university departments.

The project involves Scancor Alumni scholars working together with scholars in the Department of Sociology and the Medical School at Stanford University. The seminar created an opportunity for discussion with Scancor scholars and Stanford faculty and about methods of analysis of scholarly networks, studies of scientific communities and organizational dimension of interdisciplinary science.