Living Labs for Higher Education Institutes

Living Labs as an educational environment for business education in higher education institutes

BACKGROUND/HISTORY AND CONTEXT OF THE WORKSHOP

    Living labs and co-production could potentially be very powerful strategies for universities to address sustainability challenges and to provide a strong, effective and motivational learning environment. Yet there are still relatively few examples of using real living labs in education , especially in sectors such as business studies. This workshop discusses the potential of living labs to provide a holistic and iterative framework for the co-production of knowledge. 

   The challenge is to turn the University into a Living Lab or to transform the surrounding environment into a real-life Living Lab for higher education. The goal is to explore and provide a framework for students and academics to engage with the opportunities to work with the surrounding environment in a mutually beneficial manner where learning occurs alongside the “business-as-usual” of the living lab. This workshop explores discusses the generation of living lab projects, the design of the campus as a living lab, and institutional visibility, identifying the key strengths of the living lab approach and the challenges of applying it more broadly

MAIN AIM / OBJECTIVE

   The main goal of the workshop is to share and explore best practices in using living labs as an educational environment or tool in higher education especially in the domain of business programs and business education. Specifically, we aim to provide a roadmap of key considerations and building block to address the issue of how to employ living labs in the learning process at the HEI level for studies in business, management, sales, finance, etc.

EXPECTED OUTCOMES

   The participants will gain an understanding into: What is the role of living labs in higher education in business studies? What are the key considerations when planning a living lab as an educational environment for business students?

   How to build and design the living lab to support higher education in different educational sectors and curricula? What methods to use? How to design and select ways of working within the living lab to support business and management studies? 

   Can the living lab be used as a platform to connect R&D more closely with education? What are the most crucial elements in creating a living lab for business studies and how does it differ from project based learning or commissioned assignments?

BRIEF OUTLINE / METHODOLOGY 

    We will use different co-creative brainstorming methodologies, including learning cafe’s and the lotus blossom as well as roadmapping for the conclusion..

Workshop Facilitators

Minna-Maari Harmaala

Principal Lecturer

Sakariina Heikkanen

RDI Senior Expert

Kati Takaluoma

RDI Specialist