OpenLivingLab Days 2017 brings together both academics and managers from fields of innovation and fields applying Living Labs and Living Laboratories to explore the benefits Living Labs provide for a variety of stakeholders. The 5th edition of the Living Lab Research Day at the OpenLivingLab Days conference is an opportunity for researchers and practitioners to:

  • Bring together a state-of-the-art review of Living Lab concepts and their usage
  • Strengthen Living Labs as an area of innovation
  • Assess new trends, current challenges and developments of Living Labs
  • Co-create new disruptive innovation models
  • Establish strong connections with other emerging disciplines

Researchers have been invited to apply for the call for papers until the 5th May EOB. The papers are currently being reviewed and the information about the selected papers will be made public soon. Selected papers will be presented during the sessions taking place on the first and the second day of the OpenLivingLab Days during the Research Sessions (see the agenda for more information) 


Track 1:
Reflecting on, and in, research and practice in Living Lab processes”

Track Chairs:
PhD Anna Ståhlbröst, associate professor at Luleå University of Technology (Sweden) PhD Marita Holst, research director of Botnia Living Lab and General Manager at Botnia Living Lab (Sweden)

This track expects papers reflecting on the Living Labs concept and processes, and how it has grown and matured during the last fifteen years. We invite papers reflecting on research and practice in processes such as, need-finding, co-creation, design, as well as real-world tests and evaluations. In addition, we expect articles reviewing how the concept of Living Lab emerged and how this is reflected in current research practices.

Issues and questions might include (but are not limited to) the following:

  • In what way do current Living Lab practices support reflection and learning from practice to support innovation and research?
  • How is reflective practice and research framed, developed and conducted in innovation processes conducted in Living Labs?
  • In what ways does reflective practice contribute to the innovation process in Living Labs?
  • How do reflective practices in research and innovation activities (e.g., interpretive, participatory, critical, mixed method) inform Living Lab theory and practice?

Track 2:
Living Labs versus other forms of collective and collaborative innovation”

Track Chairs:
Seppo Leminen D.Sc. (Econ.), D.Sc. (Tech.), Principal Lecturer at Laurea University of Applied Sciences (Finland)
Artur Serra, i2cat deputy director (Spain)

Living Labs are emerging phenomena and living labs are platforms that bring together all the relevant parties for innovation co-creation. Living labs provide an interesting and growing option. There is more and more diversity in terms of topics covered and approaches taken in living labs practice as well as research (cf. Bergvall-Kåreborn et al., 2015; Dell’Era & Landoni, 2014; Dutilleul et al., 2010; Edvardsson et al., 2012; Femeniás &, Hagbert, 2013; Guimont, & Lapointe, 2016; Hakkarainen & Hyysalo, 2016; Leminen, 2015; Leminen & Westerlund, 2016, Leminen et al., 2012, 2015, 2016; Nyström et al., 2014; Rits et al., 2015; Schuurman et al., 2016; Ståhlbröst & Lassinantti, 2015; Veeckman et al., 2013). They are physical regions or virtual realities where stakeholders from public-private-people partnerships (4Ps) of firms, public agencies, universities, institutes, and users meet. All are collaborating to create, prototype, validate and test new technologies, services, products, and systems in real-life contexts (Westerlund & Leminen, 2011). In living labs users are the ones shaping innovation in their own real-life environments, whereas in traditional innovation networks the insights of users are captured and interpreted by experts (Almirall, 2009). Similar to other forms of open innovation, living labs are dynamic, but they are more formally structured and less boundless than other open innovation networks. There is little research on living labs and their relation to other form of collective and collaborative innovation and collaborative innovation including maker spaces, hacker spaces, Fab Labs, co-creation spaces, innovation spaces and tech Innovation ecosystems.

Track 3:
Open Innovation and User Innovation in Living Labs for SME/business support, healthcare and urban & regional development”

Track Chair:
dr. Dimitri Schuurman, imec Team lead user research (Belgium), co-lead of ENoLL Special Interest Group on Research and Future of Living Labs

Innovation has shifted from a closed single-inventor perspective towards a multi-actor process that deals with the search and combination of distributed sources of knowledge, a phenomenon referred to as distributed innovation. Living Labs as Quadruple-Helix organizations aimed at multi-stakeholder innovation with active user involvement, are organizations that cope with this distributed nature of innovation. To study Living Labs, Open Innovation allows to analyze knowledge and technology transfers, emphasizing the value generated for an actor engaging in these type of  transfers, mostly resulting in a company-centric perspective (Chesbrough, 2003; West & Bogers, 2013). The User Innovation literature looks at the contribution of end-users to the innovation process and to the circumstances and user characteristics that influence the innovative capacity of end-users, resulting mostly in a user-centric perspective (von Hippel, 1976, 2009). Within this track, we welcome papers that explore the links and intersections of both paradigms in Living Labs.

We specifically welcome papers on Living Lab based Open and User innovation applied to specific application domains:

  •  SME/business support – “Living-Labs-as-a-Service”
  •  Healthcare
  •  urban and regional development


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