News: Teknikens ekonomi och organisation related to Chalmers University of TechnologyThu, 02 Jul 2020 10:47:52 +0200 life cycle perspective described in four short films<p><b>​The Swedish Life Cycle Center (SLC), a competence center at the Department of Technology Management and Economics, launches four short films on life cycle thinking. The films give insight into the different uses of the life cycle perspective and life cycle analysis in partner organisations, and how collaboration is the key when moving forward.</b></p>​The films launched this week by the Swedish Life Cycle Center aim to explain the life cycle perspective in a broader context and increase understanding of the role of the life cycle perspective when making sustainable and long-term decisions. Three professionals with different perspectives, Eva Ahlner, Senior Advisor at Swedish Environmental Protection Agency, Helle Herk-Hansen, Head of Environment at Vattenfall, and Holger Wallbaum, Professor in Sustainable building at Architecture and Civil Engineering at Chalmers University of Technology, talk about the use of the life cycle perspective and LCA in their respective organizations. The films have been produced within the project Swedish Platform for the Life Cycle Perspective, funded by the Swedish Energy Agency and partners of the Swedish Life Cycle Center.<div><h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">The four films</h3> <div><ul><li><a href="" target="_blank">The Life Cycle Perspective – The art of making good, long-term and sustainable decisions</a><br /><br /></li> <li><a href="" target="_blank">The Life Cycle Perspective at Chalmers University of Technology</a> <br />Holger Wallbaum, Professor in Sustainable building at Architecture and Civil Engineering at Chalmers University of Technology, explains how the life cycle perspective is included in both research and education and why the collaboration between the authorities, the academy and the civil society is important.<br /><br /></li> <li><a href="" target="_blank">The Life Cycle Perspective at Vattenfall</a> <br />Helle Herk-Hansen, Head of Environment at Vattenfall, gives insights into how a company works with the life cycle perspective and LCA to identifying the largest environmental impact within a product's value chain and how LCA makes it possible to be completely transparent concerning the environmental impact of an energy source.​<br /><br /></li> <li><a href="" target="_blank">The Life Cycle Perspective at the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency </a><br />Eva Ahlner, Senior Advisor at Swedish Environmental Protection Agency, explains how the agency works with the life cycle perspective to monitor consumption-based emissions in a globalized world and why having access to scientific and harmonized data is crucial for policymaking.<span style="background-color:initial">​</span></li></ul></div> <div></div> <div> <div><br /></div></div> <div>Text: Maria Rydberg</div> <div><h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">Swedish Life Cycle Center</h3> <div><a href="" target="_blank">Swedish Life Cycle Center</a> is a center of excellence for the advance of applied life cycle thinking in industry and other parts of society. Since the start in1996, Chalmers University of Technology has been the host of the center and host department is Technology Management and Economics (TME) and the center has a close collaboration with the Division of Environmental Systems Analysis. Swedish Life Cycle Center has 14 partners and is the host for a governmental collaboration with nine Swedish authorities. </div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"> </span></div> <div><strong>LinkedIn:</strong> <a href="" target="_blank">Swedish Life Cycle Center</a></div> <div><strong>Twitter: </strong><a href="" target="_blank">@Lifecyclecenter​</a></div></div></div>Thu, 25 Jun 2020 01:00:00 +0200 million to increase application of the life cycle perspective<p><b>​​The Swedish Energy Agency has granted Chalmers University of Technology, the host university for the Swedish Life Cycle Center, SEK 8.28 million in support of an innovation cluster for the life cycle perspective between 2020 and 2024. The project is intended to strengthen Swedish collaboration in the life cycle area and contribute to an increased exchange of know-how, skills development and understanding for the life cycle perspective in industry and other parts of society.</b></p><div>The project aims to increase the use of the life cycle perspective among more players in society and thereby contribute to increasing energy and resource efficiency, improving consumption and production patterns, and to Agenda 2030. </div> <div> </div> <div>The project has strong support from significant players in the form of co-funding from several industrial enterprises, universities, research institutes and public agencies. The project will be run by the Swedish Life Cycle Center, a competence centre at Chalmers University of Technology, which has been working together with industry, public agencies and research to meet and develop skills within the life cycle area since the 1990s. The Swedish Energy Agency has already financed “Swedish platform for the life cycle perspective”, a three-year project that was recently concluded.</div> <div> </div> <div>“We are incredibly proud to receive this funding from the Swedish Energy Agency and for the confidence the agency has in us to continue to build on the momentum that was created in the earlier project. We can see how the Swedish Energy Agency’s funding has enabled us to meet society’s increased demand for life cycle skills. Owing to the keen involvement of several different players, we reach out to many organisations, impact on important international initiatives and contribute to an important increase in skills development in society,” says Sara Palander, Director of the Swedish Life Cycle Center at Chalmers University of Technology.  </div> <div> </div> <div>The life cycle perspective involves considering the total impact of a product or service on the environment and on society through the entire value chain, from the extraction of raw materials to their disposal after use, and all the stages in between. The life cycle perspective enables us to identify where in the value chain the greatest impact lies. One of the primary advantages of applying a life cycle perspective is being able to establish the impact on the environment and on society of one’s products or services. It also makes it possible to avoid sub-optimal solutions – to avoid shifting the burden from one part of the chain to another. </div> <div> </div> <div>Chalmers, being the host university for the centre, has several nationally and internationally recognised researchers within LCA and LCM (life cycle management) and the project is expected to involve several researchers and doctoral students in its activities, such as in the project’s planned networking meetings for doctoral students and researchers as well as in new research collaborations. </div> <div> </div> <div>“The project is expected to contribute to the start of new research collaborations where representatives from the academic world, industry and public agencies can meet and contribute to the development of new methodology within LCA,” says Rickard Arvidsson, active researcher in environmental and sustainability assessments in the Division of Environmental Systems Analysis at Chalmers University of Technology, who is also the university’s representative on the centre’s steering group. </div> <div> </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">Additional voices concerning the initiative: </h3> <div><em>“The innovation cluster will bring together the country’s life cycle experts and disseminate know-how about the life cycle perspective to more users, which is expected to increase the use of life cycle aseessments throughout the value chain and thereby be able to increase Swedish competitiveness.” </em></div> <div>Susanna Widstrand, Research Administrator, the Swedish Energy Agency</div> <div> </div> <div><em>“An increase in the application of the life cycle perspective is essential for increasing society’s resource efficiency and for innovations and new business models that contribute to a transition to sustainability. This project is an important component for promoting this transition and to achieve increased collaboration between different players in the value chain.” </em></div> <div>Lars Mårtensson, Environment and Innovation Director, Volvo Trucks, who is currently Chairman of the Board of the Swedish Life Cycle Center and the steering group for the innovation cluster.</div> <div> </div> <div><em>“The Swedish Energy Agency’s financial support is significant to enable an important and relevant collaboration to continue between the many different players within the Swedish Life Cycle Center and the ‘Swedish platform for the life cycle perspective’ project. Bearing in mind the increased focus on the circular economy, value chains and product transparency, it is necessary to develop and improve both the methodology and use of LCA for the future. At the same time, this funding makes it possible for the centre to keep up with the good work that was begun in the earlier project ‘Swedish platform for the life cycle perspective’.”</em></div> <div>Helle Herk-Hansen, Head of Environment at Vattenfall</div> <div> </div> <div><em>“The Swedish Energy Agency’s investment in the innovation cluster is incredibly important for continuing to strengthen Swedish collaboration and increasing the application of the life cycle perspective to more parts of society. There is an increased need for expertise, tools, methodology development, training and coordinating activities in this area – and this is where we can make a further contribution through this important initiative.” </em></div> <div>Anna Wikström, Acting Director, Swedish Life Cycle Center at Chalmers University of Technology. </div> <div> </div> <div>More information about the project and planned activities will be published shortly on the Swedish Life Cycle Center’s website <span><span><a href=""></a><a href=""><span style="display:inline-block"></span></a></span></span> and on social media.</div> <div> </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">The following organisations are involved in co-financing the project: </h3> <div>Chalmers University of Technology</div> <div>KTH Royal Institute of Technology</div> <div>Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, SLU</div> <div>AB SKF</div> <div>Essity Hygiene and Health AB</div> <div>IVL Swedish Environmental Research Institute</div> <div>Nouryon AB</div> <div>RISE Research Institutes of Sweden AB</div> <div>Scania CV AB</div> <div>Sweco Environment AB</div> <div>Swedish Environmental Protection Agency</div> <div>Vattenfall AB</div> <div>Volvo Cars Corporation</div> <div>Volvo Technology AB</div> <div> <br /><br /></div> <div><a href="">&gt;&gt; Swedish Energy Agency´s news post about the project</a></div> <div> </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">Swedish Life Cycle Center</h3> <div>Swedish Life Cycle Center is a national competence center at Chalmers University of Technology for credible and applied life cycle thinking in industry and society. The center was founded year 1996 as a collaboration between Nutek (later Vinnova), Chalmers University of Technology and a number of international enterprises. Swedish Life Cycle Center has today 14 partners and is host for a collaboration with nine Swedish government agencies (National Board of Housing, Building and Planning, Swedish Board of Agriculture, Swedish Consumer Agency, Swedish Energy Agency, Swedish Environmental Protection Agency, Swedish Geotechnical Institute (SGI), Swedish Transport Administration, the National Agency for Public Procurement and the Swedish Agency for Growth Policy Analysis, Growth Analysis</div> <div>    </div> <div>The center is hosted by the Department of Technology Management and Economics and has a close collaboration with the division Environmental Systems Analysis. It is also part of the Chalmers Production Area of Advance.</div> <div> </div> <div>Swedish Life Cycle Center in social media: </div> <div>LinkedIn: <span><a href="">Swedish Life Cycle Center</a><a href=""><span style="display:inline-block"></span></a></span></div> <div>Twitter: <span><a href="">@Lifecyclecenter</a><a href=""><span style="display:inline-block"></span></a></span></div> <div><br /></div> <div><span><a href=""></a><a href=""><span style="display:inline-block"></span></a></span></div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div><strong>Kontakt</strong></div> <div>Anna Wikström, Acting Director Swedish Life Cycle Center</div> <div>Department Technology Management and Economics, Chalmers University of Technology</div> <div></div> <div>031-772 49 61</div> <div> </div> <div><em>Text: Daniel Karlsson and Anna Wikström</em></div>Tue, 23 Jun 2020 00:00:00 +0200 Workshop for Scholars in Innovation and Entrepreneurship<p><b>​Where to publish? What careers? University of Gothenburg and Chalmers University of Technology jointly hosted this year’s annual gathering of scholars in innovation and entrepreneurship. The workshop was organized by six separate digital workshop meetings, which brought together almost 40 participants, with main affiliations from 14 universities.</b></p><div>​<span>All the meetings took place on June 8-9, 2020. In order to participate, the PhD students and post-doctoral scholars had to answer a series of questions in advance.<span></span><span style="display:inline-block"><br /></span></span></div> <div><span><span style="display:inline-block"><br /></span></span></div> <div><div>On behalf of the larger organizing team:</div> <em> </em><div><em> </em></div> <em> </em><div><em>&quot;Thanks to everyone for participating! These discussions help build community of scholars in innovation and entrepreneurship, of scholars with close links to Sweden. Our academic community benefits, through career advice; breaking potential isolation in current work situation; and expanding research networks across universities&quot; </em> <br />Maureen McKelvey, Professor at University of Gothenburg and Karen Williams Middleton, Associate Professor at Chalmers.</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>The collaborating hosts in Gothenburg matched up the registered participants into groups, based on expertise and diversity of organization. Each group had an appointed established scholar as chairperson to lead the scientific discussions and an early career scholar as team leader to organize the practicalities.</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>Discussion focused around: research topics in the field; publication strategies; and future careers within innovation and entrepreneurship. Discussion also gave direct advice to the early career scholars – e.g. PhD students and post-doctoral scholars – in each group.</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>Download the form <a href=";languageId=100000&amp;assetKey=Research+Trajectory+Exercise">“Research Trajectory Exercise (RTE)”</a></div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> <br /></div> <div> </div> <div>A few insights follow, from the rich and varied discussions:</div> <div> </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">Patience and passion</h3> <div> </div> <div>One topic discussed was that patience and passion were the two most important characteristics for researchers.</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>&quot;I had a very productive and rewarding day. We discussed my ongoing research and I received good feedback and comments&quot;, says Linus Brunnström, PhD student, University of Gothenburg</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>One group spent much time discussing different career choices and paths, where the established scholars told their stories and gave relevant advice about developing networks and believing in your research.</div> <div> </div> <div> <br /><img src="" alt="" style="margin:0px;width:750px;height:481px" /><br /><em>Photo: Screenshot from one of the group meetings</em></div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">Research Design and Writing</h3> <div> </div> <div>Another topic related to research design, publications and writing, and the need to be very strategic in devoting time to writing for publications. Several groups discussed how and why modern scholarship requires a very solid research design – whereby the research questions, literature, data and methodology are aligned and interesting.</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>Recommendation: If one has a solid research design, then it should be possible to send to high-ranked journals. Read those journals carefully and see where the standards lie! One should only send to a journal if the paper has a reasonable chance of being sent out to reviewers.</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>One group very much stressed the vital importance of finding dedicated time – not hours but days and weeks and months – to focus upon writing. Too many people find it too easy to find other things to do. Setting aside continuous and dedicated time to writing is crucial!</div> <div> </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3"> </h3> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">Strategic Thinking about Future Career</h3> <div> </div> <div>Another topic involved strategic thinking about future career choices. Several groups pointed out that alumni from PhD education will increasingly have much more diverse careers than previously.</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>&quot;The research trajectory exercise facilitated my career planning and vision by reflecting on key aspects such as my research position, and most importantly, my longterm goals as an academic&quot;, says Zanele Penny Lurafu, PhD student, Jönköping University.</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>In addition to remaining in academia as researchers, alumni have many career options – such as teaching, analytical consultant, public policy, research institutes, and administration with universities.</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>Recommendations for early career scholar: Consider a portfolio of relevant activities to interact with society – as well as the portfolio of research publications; be aware the career ladder for professor is very competitive; Use the RTE to do annual strategic planning. Think serious about the wide variety of potential career paths.</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>Recommendations for PhD programs within the universities: Consider how to provide individual customization of advice and activities for alumni not staying within academia; Better explain the value of more general skills and analytical techniques, such as mastering ‘R’ and ‘NVivo’.<br /><br /><img src="" alt="" style="margin:0px;width:750px;height:429px" /><em>Photo: Screenshot from one of the group meetings</em></div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">What next?</h3> <div> </div> <div> As a positive outcome of the current Covid-19 situation, the smaller groups run through a digital format allowed many more people to participate, distributed spatially. Many of the participants expressed interested in finding ways of continuing these discussions about research topics, publications and careers.</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>Chalmers and GU will jointly organize the annual meeting on June 7th and 8th 2021 in Gothenburg, amongst the established scholars in innovation and entrepreneurship.<br /></div> <div> <br /><br /></div> <div> </div> <div>By: Maureen McKelvey, Mats Lundqvist, Karen Williams Middleton, Viktor Ström<br /><span><span style="display:inline-block"></span></span></div></div>Mon, 15 Jun 2020 14:00:00 +0200–-the-start-of-our-smart-society.aspx – the start of our smart society<p><b>​The Swedish auction of frequency bands for 5G this autumn will be the start of the next generation of mobile systems, which is expected to result in a plethora of new connected services. Which actors will drive innovation remains to be seen – but how trust is handled will be crucial. ​</b></p><p>​<span style="background-color:initial">Initially, we will primarily experience a significantly stronger mobile broadband, and the capacity to connect a larger number of units. 5G will also be ten times more energy efficient compared to 4G. Then, the notorious 5G boost of the Internet of Things will likely follow, and the expected revolution of industry, smart cities, cloud-based augmented reality and much more. Many industries have already launched connected services, based on other communication standards such as Wi-Fi or 4G.</span></p> <p>“Which is good, a rapid development gives competitive advantage. We learn as we go, and with 5G comes the opportunity to scale up”, says Tommy Svensson, researcher in Communication Systems.</p> <p>He believes this is an important revolution and exemplifies with the automotive industry.</p> <p>“Important aspects of their operations will be cloud-based, such as product updates to vehicles via the network and collection of data on maintenance needs, and we will see new traffic safety features thanks to fast communication to and in-between vehicles”, says Tommy Svensson.</p> <p>“There are still areas of development for 5G, such as AI that could self-optimize the networks, energy distribution to sensors, or to improve coverage in challenging areas across the globe”, says Tommy Svensson.</p> <p>The scenarios for the future are attractive, but what does it take for new technology to bring innovation on a broad front? Erik Bohlin at the Department of Technology Management and Economics studies regulation and competition in telecom. He says there is an ongoing debate about which actors are likely to drive the development.</p> <p>“Mobile operators need to be on their toes if they want to drive innovation in the 5G cloud. It is very likely that there will be other actors. Cloud services of today are mostly driven by other than mobile operators”, says Erik Bohlin.</p> <p>“With 5G there is a possibility to use more frequency bands, different frequency bands may be suitable for different purposes. There is also a discussion about allocating a frequency range for specific applications. Several countries in Europe have already taking this decision, including Sweden”, says Erik Bohlin.</p> <p>Some mean that it would benefit innovation to open the market for new actors to drive and develop new applications. Erik Bohlin and his colleagues have studied the current policies for telecom and frequency allocation and compared with available research on innovation systems. The analysis shows that today's regulation of the telecom market in Europe has mainly been focused on competition issues, to avoid any individual player becoming too dominant.</p> <p>However, with the launch of 5G, the issue of promoting innovation has been raised. But there is no simple answer on how to set up a frequency allocation auction in order to promote innovation, according to Erik Bohlin. Innovation is difficult to predict. He makes a historical comparison.</p> <p>“Many believed that 3G was going to boost innovation, but it was not until smartphones came that we saw an upswing. Nor could anyone predict that today's major business areas would be based on free services on the Internet, such as Google, Facebook and Spotify.”</p> <p>Most of the debate about 5G the last year has concerned security. High security requirements will be imposed on both operators and suppliers of infrastructure. In February it was decided that the Swedish Post and Telecom Authority (PTS), who are hosting the frequency auctions, needs to consult with the Swedish Security Service (Säpo) and the Swedish National Defense before granting any frequency permits.</p> <p>5G also enables new kinds of cloud services, but trust will be crucial in order to successfully provide these services.</p> <p>“In order to trust the telecom operators with these services, they need to ensure security, confidentiality, integrity. Some industry actors mean that they need to run their own services”, says Tomas Olovsson at the Department of Computer Science and Engineering.</p> <p>“If you look at the 5G network itself, the security need not be more challenging than for 4G. It's just a matter of moving data from a to b. Security can be handled in the same way as today, at a higher level in the applications”, says Tomas Olovsson.</p> <p>In terms of security, there are also benefits with 5G.</p> <p>“With 5G there is an opportunity to put parts of the security in the network itself and for some applications it can be a big advantage”, says Tomas Olovsson.</p> <p>For example, letting the network help authenticate the party you are communicating with in time-critical situations, or using a targeted radio signal, making wiretapping more difficult.</p> <p><br /></p> <p><em>Text: Malin Ulfvarson</em></p> <p><em>Illustration: Yen Strandqvist</em></p> <p><br /></p> <p><a href="">Republished from Chalmers magazine no. 1 2020</a> (In Swedish)</p> <p><br /></p> <p><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Areas%20of%20Advance/Information%20and%20Communication%20Technology/News%20events/CM/illustration5G_CM-nr1-20.jpg" alt="illustration of a connected city" style="margin:5px" /><br /><br /><br /></p> <p>Also read: <a href="/en/departments/e2/news/Pages/5G-enables-communicating-gadgets-and-sustainability.aspx">5G enables communicating gadgets and sustainability</a></p> <p>​<br /></p>Mon, 15 Jun 2020 13:00:00 +0200 of patients explored in research project<p><b>​People living with chronic illness are often responsible for a large portion of their own care in their daily life. This makes them experts on how to live with the disease – a role that should be used to reshape the health care system. And patients can now contribute!</b></p><div>​Chalmers initiates a two-year research project focusing on the patient as an innovator. It is well-known that people living with chronic diseases or long-term conditions, learn how to live with and adapt to their illness. They are forced to learn about complex disease profiles and be diligent when observing symptoms, how they respond to treatment, and learn what it takes to improve quality of life. This experience can lead to innovations, and this group of patients – and their relatives – are an untapped source of knowledge and innovation.</div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">Supporting the patient in taking initiative</h3> <div><span><img src="/sv/centrum/chi/Nyheter/PublishingImages/Andreas-Hellstrom.jpg" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" alt="" style="margin:5px;width:150px;height:195px" /></span>This is a research project that takes a totally new perspective, according to Andreas Hellström, research leader at Chalmers.</div> <div> </div> <div>“It has become more common to involve patients when developing processes and services in health care, but this project takes it one step further. We support the patients in taking initiative and taking the lead in the innovation process, which allows for completely new ideas and solutions. This is an area ripe for innovation, just waiting to be used”, says Andreas Hellström.</div> <div> </div> <div>For the patients to get the right conditions to drive innovation with a focus on how to live with chronic illness, there has to be the right structures in places in society, that are open for new ideas. This is exactly what this research project aims to study. </div> <div> </div> <div>“In this project we’re going to develop and evaluate strategies, tools and models to allow for citizens and patients to successfully act as innovators. We are going to document what has to be in place on a structural level to create the right conditions for innovations.”</div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">Researcher and living with a disease</h3> <div><span><img src="/sv/centrum/chi/Nyheter/PublishingImages/Sara-Riggare.jpg" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" alt="" style="margin:5px;width:150px;height:195px" /></span>Sara Riggare has Parkinson’s disease, and is part of the project management team. She meets her neurologist twice per year, the rest of the time she is her own primary care giver. Sara Riggare is also a PhD student at Uppsala University and has – among other things – developed a method for monitoring of medication. She is a well-known and outspoken patient advocate, not just in Sweden but also internationally, for enabling patients to contribute to innovations for a healthier life.</div> <div> </div> <div>“Today, there is nowhere to turn to if you want to develop new ideas, and because of this a large portion of patient knowledge is lost. The doctor doesn’t have all the information, and neither does the patient. I would wish for the cooperation between the patient and the health care providers to be more equal”, she says. </div> <div> </div> <div>Health care has a lot to gain from knowledge originating from people’s experiences of living with chronic illness – that is, a holistic view that includes health, everyday life and self-care.</div> <div> </div> <div>“The health care providers also have a role to play in this, it is not just about self-care and everyday life. We will also look for project participants who have ideas about what healthcare could do differently”, says Andreas Hellström.</div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">Sharing experiences and learning together</h3> <div>The research project is based on so-called learning by doing. Patients or relatives will be invited to share their own experiences of trying to innovate in their health and selfcare. Together with researchers and innovation coaches they will develop and test strategies for innovation. The researchers will follow each step of the process and explore conditions necessary for good ideas to be tested and utilised.</div> <div> </div> <div><br /><strong>Would you like to participate in this project?</strong><a href=""> Read more here</a>.<br />You are also welcome to send an email to <a href="">Andreas Hellström</a>.<br /></div> <div><em> </em></div> <em> </em><div>The research project <em>Patienten som innovationsledare i välfärdssystemet </em>is funded by Vinnova and run in collaboration between Centre for Healthcare Improvement at Chalmers, Västra Götalandsregionen, the organization Forum Spetspatient, Kraftens hus, Coinnovate and C.S. Combined Services AB.</div> <div> </div> <div><br />Text: Malin Ulfvarson</div> <div>Photos: Carolina Pires Bertuol (Andreas Hellström), Christopher Kern (Sara Riggare)</div>Mon, 15 Jun 2020 12:00:00 +0200 information at terminals can improve freight transports<p><b>​Only the relevant information – in the precise right moment. Effective access processes can improve the flow at freight terminals with intermodal transports, where different modes of transport are used. This is shown in Stefan Jacobsson&#39;s new doctoral thesis. The result indicates less queues and reduced emissions, which can contribute to more sustainable freight transports.</b></p><h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">​What challenges do you focus on in your research?</h3> <div>“A pivotal element in the transport industry, intermodal freight transport, is rather complex due to the numerous transport modes and actors involved. Terminal operators in intermodal freight transport face major challenges to provide seamless flows of containers via their terminals. Seamless flows are achievable by bridging gaps between large-scale transport operators, e.g. shipping lines, and small-scale transport operators, e.g. road hauliers and rail operators.”</div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">How do you address the problem?</h3> <div>“Those gaps can be bridged with effective access processes. This mean the exchange of the right information at the right time, to achieve improved resources utilisation and activity performance in involved terminal- and transport processes. With effective access processes, wait times for trucks and trains at terminals can be decreased as well as the right containers at the right time can be accessed.” <br /></div> <div><br /></div> <div>“By applying the access processes, small-scale transport operators can receive effective access to containers in terminals. An effective access process can be achieved when transport resources – such as trucks and truck drivers – can be managed together with terminal resources – such as so called straddle carriers and straddle carrier drivers. In this thesis, such management is termed “access management”.</div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">What were the main findings of your research? </h3> <div>“Terminal- and transport processes can be effective with decreased wait times for trucks and trains at terminals and with access to the right containers at the right times if actors involved are willing to apply five identified access management services presented in the thesis. Those services are able to share and/or exchange information.”</div> <div> </div> <div>“My research indicates that only a subset of information attributes is necessary to be exchanged for effective access management. This result can question the “Big Data” concept whereas much information as possible should be exchanged. Instead, actors involved need only to exchange relevant information. For example, road hauliers and rail operators need to in advance inform the terminal operators about what and at what time the containers are to be picked up or dropped off. With this information, the terminal operators can effectively prepare the arrivals of the trucks and trains that in turn can lead to seamless flow of containers through the terminals.” <br /></div> <div><br /></div> <div>“My research shows that if the road hauliers and rail operators can share this information 1 week, 1 day and 2 hours before the arrivals of the trucks and trains, the terminal operators are able to make the preparations in the best way and effective access management can be achieved. Moreover, by sharing this information, the resources can be utilised effectively and the activities in the terminal- and transport processes can be performed effectively.“</div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">What do you hope your research will lead to?</h3> <div>“I hope that my research can lead to increased understanding about how effective access management can be achieved. Namely, I hope that the frameworks developed in this thesis can be applied and further developed to be adopted in other settings, e.g. in other terminals. I also hope that my research can lead to increased understanding for actors involved about how they can apply the five identified access management services and how these services have different abilities in sharing and exchanging information that in turn have different abilities in contributing to effective access management.”</div> <div> </div> <div>“With increased understanding and the application of those frameworks as well as the five identified access management services, seamless flows of containers through the terminals may be achieved that in turn can lead to decreased wait time for trucks and trains at terminals that in turn can lead to reduced queuing and emissions that in turn can lead to a more sustainable intermodal freight transport system.”</div> <div><br /><br /></div> <div> </div> <div><em>Text compilation: Daniel Karlsson</em></div> <div><em></em><br /></div> <div> </div> <div><a href="/en/departments/tme/news/Pages/New-research-demonstrated-at-Logistik-Transport.aspx">See film from trade fair Logistik &amp; Transport 2019</a> where Stefan Jacobsson presents the project DREAMIT, Digital Accesshantering i Realtid för Intermodala Transporter</div> <div> </div> <div>Read the thesis <a href="">”Access management for road hauliers and rail operators in intermodal freight terminals” <br /></a></div> <div><br /><a href=""></a></div> <div>The thesis defence will be online on Zoom, 17 June 2020 at 13.15, <a href="">find link here</a></div> <div><br />More about industrial PhD <a href="/en/Staff/Pages/stefan-jacobsson.aspx">Stefan Jacobsson</a></div> <div><br /></div> <div> </div>Wed, 10 Jun 2020 09:00:00 +0200 for reducing food waste wins the Gothenburg Smart City Challenge<p><b>​The proposal Matvinn, which simultaneously solves two issues, impressed both the general public and the jury when voting for the winner of the Gothenburg Smart City Challenge. By saving food waste from school kitchens and allowing students&#39; parents to bring food boxes home, the climate impact of food waste can be reduced while the everyday lives of families are made easier.</b></p>​<span style="background-color:initial">The task for the students, who are finalizing the third year at the Industrial Economics program at Chalmers University of Technology, was to develop ideas for smart digital solutions that could make Gothenburg a better place to live. 18 teams came up with ideas that were presented with a short film and a poster, published on <a href="" target="_blank">the urban development website of the City of Gothenburg</a>. For two months the public has been invited to vote for their favorite.  Meanwhile, a jury including members from the city's various administrations and the teacher of the course, assessed the proposals.</span><div><br /></div> <div>When the voting closed on May 31, it was clear that the proposal Matvinn, developed by Rebecka Jakobsson, Cecilia Michelsen, Filipppa Johnsen, Clara Ottosson, Fredrik Dahl and Linnéa Fransson, had convinced both the jury and the general public as it received the highest scores from both. &quot;Winner all over! Food for children who do not get a meal at home,&quot; were some of the jury's motivations.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>&quot;We are very happy about winning! It feels great that both the City of Gothenburg and the public like our idea and that the issue of food waste comes in focus,&quot; says the team via Clara Ottosson.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>The idea of Matvinn was born out of the fact that 34 tons of edible food is thrown out every day in Swedish school kitchens. At the same time, there is a clear goal in the UN Agenda for Sustainable Development, to which the world’s countries have agreed, that food waste should be reduced by 50 percent by 2030.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>With Matvinn's proposal, school kitchen staff pack leftover food in boxes that are placed in a locked fridge. Parents then use an app to see how many boxes are available and book them. They will also receive a code for the fridge to be able to retrieve their booked boxes. The food boxes are free for families, which means that they save both time and money. Through the app they would also get information on how much food they have saved and how much carbon dioxide emissions it corresponds to.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>The app has not been fully developed during the semester, but the team has been in contact with a school in Angered that has shown interest in the project. The school is already actively working to minimize food waste, but still estimates that about 20 servings a day are thrown away. Trying to find solutions to real problems and the different structure of the course was appreciated by the students.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>&quot;It was great fun and a change from how we usually study. It was motivating to work with something that can be applied in reality and to have contact with various actors in society. Also, we enjoyed the opportunity to be creative and come up with our own ideas for how Gothenburg can be developed into a smarter and more sustainable city. Brainstorming around innovative solutions is very rewarding and fun but also challenging,&quot; says Clara Ottosson.<br /><br /></div> <div><img src="/en/departments/tme/news/PublishingImages/Matvinnposter_750x340.png" alt="Matvinnposter_750x340.png" style="margin:5px;width:740px;height:340px" /><br /><br /></div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">Gothenburg Smart City Challenge</h3> <div>The Gothenburg Smart City Challenge competition took place during the spring semester of 2020 and is a collaboration between Chalmers University of Technology and the City of Gothenburg within the framework of the <a href="">EU project IRIS Smart Cities</a>. Nearly 200 people voted on the 18 proposals and the highest number of votes was received by Matvinn with 26 points. The proposal was also ranked number one by the jury in which the City of Gothenburg and Chalmers University of Technology were included. Runner up in the competition, with 24 of the public's votes, was the proposal Plantform - a digital platform to facilitate for urban farming in Gothenburg.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><a href="" target="_blank"><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/icgen.gif" alt="" />Watch the film about Matvinn</a></div> Tue, 09 Jun 2020 09:00:00 +0200 cycle assessment can assist substitution of hazardous water repellent substances in textiles<p><b>​Hanna Holmquist’s research has focused on how life cycle assessment can support the phase-out of hazardous chemicals used in durable water repellents applied to textile products, and on what kinds of information might motivate consumers towards a phase-out. Her doctoral thesis shows that LCA can provide relevant information to industries and policy makers in finding alternatives with greater environmental and human health performance. Furthermore, detailed information on hazardous substances can affect consumer behaviour.</b></p><div><span style="background-color:initial"><strong>Wha</strong></span><span style="background-color:initial"><strong>t</strong></span><span style="background-color:initial"><strong> challenges do you focus on your research? </strong></span><br /></div> <div>&quot;Highly fluorinated substances are either stable or transform into stable degradation products in the environment. Therefore, these chemicals accumulate in the environment and there is a risk that if hazardous properties are discovered in the future, such as toxicity, it will be very difficult to eliminate the problem since they are persistent and some of them can spread widely. The precautionary principle, to act despite uncertainty, becomes important to avoid such risks. A big challenge in my research has been to develop ways to deal with a subset of these recalcitrant chemicals in life cycle-based assessments. These assessments are traditionally based on existing knowledge, and thus are difficult to combine with the precautionary principle.&quot; </div> <div> </div> <div>&quot;Another challenge has been to understand what can motivate consumers with different values and norms to choose products that do not contain hazardous highly fluorinated chemicals.&quot;</div> <div> </div> <div><strong>How are you aiming to address or solve the problem with your research?</strong></div> <div>&quot;It is now possible to make extensive life cycle assessments on textile products impregnated with highly fluorinated chemicals based on the method development and case studies I have done, also with some precautionary considerations.&quot;</div> <div><br /></div> <div>&quot;We also conducted a survey experiment to investigate consumers’ motivations to choose alternative garments to those impregnated with hazardous highly fluorinated chemicals, in which people were exposed to different types of information about the hazardousness of certain highly fluorinated chemicals.&quot;</div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>What were the main findings of your research?</strong></div> <div>&quot;The results of our life cycle assessment on a jacket impregnated with different alternative products shows that highly fluorinated chemicals should be phased out when only water repellency is required. This conclusion is based on a method where the precautionary principle was applied at least to a certain extent by use of emerging data. As highly fluorinated impregnation chemicals not only provide water repellency but also oil repellency, it would be reasonable to allow their continued use in particular applications, for example in medical products, until alternatives with equivalent function are available.&quot;</div> <div><br /></div> <div>&quot;Our survey experiment showed that Swedish consumers are highly motivated to choose products without hazardous highly fluorinated chemicals and how this motivation is related to values and norms. This can be useful information in the development of information campaigns and also support for stakeholders involved in the phase-out.&quot;</div> <div> </div> <div><strong>What do you hope your research will lead to?</strong></div> <div>&quot;I hope that stakeholders involved in the phase-out of hazardous highly fluorinated chemicals in textile impregnation can make use of the results and methods presented in my research to support their further actions.&quot;</div> <div><br /></div> <div><em>Text compilation: Carolina Pires Bertuol</em><br /></div> <em> </em><div><br /></div> <div><strong>Read more about the doctoral thesis:</strong> <a href="" target="_blank">Chemical substitution with a life cycle perspective: The case of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances in durable water repellents</a></div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>More about</strong> <a href="/en/staff/Pages/andhann.aspx" target="_blank">Hanna Holmquist</a></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><div><strong>The thesis defence will be held online via Zoom on 12 June 2020, at 08:30, </strong><a href="" target="_blank">find the link here</a></div> <div><br /></div> </span></div> <div><br /></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">​<br /></span></div>Thu, 04 Jun 2020 09:00:00 +0200 can contribute to more efficient development of product-service solutions<p><b>​In her doctoral thesis, Siri Jagstedt investigates the use of platforms for integrated product-service solutions. Platform strategies can be used to exploit commonalities between various offerings, and share assets between them, which can give more effective solutions. The thesis shows that a broad perspective is needed on what kind of assets should be used in a platform for such solutions – and knowledge is seen as a particularly important one.</b></p><h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">​What challenges do you focus on in your research?</h3> <div> </div> <div> “My research takes its point of departure in the challenges that manufacturers encounter when increasingly integrating services to their products. Providing such product-service solutions, a high degree of customization is required to address individual customers’ needs. However, customization tends to be both costly and time-consuming, resulting in profitability issues for the solution business.”</div> <div> </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">How do you address the problem with your research?</h3> <div> </div> <div>“In the thesis, I argue that a platform approach enables a more efficient solutions development. Platforms have been long used for products to achieve economies of scale effects, while allowing for flexibility to address the various needs of different customers. A platform comprises assets that are shared by a set of offerings, thereby seeking to exploit commonalities among them.” </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>“Research has recently start looking into the use of platforms for services, and in my thesis I focus on their use for offerings in which products and services are integrated. Although there are arguments in favour of using a platform approach for such product-service solutions, there are also challenges which need to be considered. My research accordingly sets out to identify and describe factors influencing the use of platforms for product–service solutions.” </div> <div> </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">What were the main findings of your research?  </h3> <div> </div> <div> “Firstly, to pay attention to differences between products, services and solutions in relation to a platform approach is important. These differences are about primary cost drivers, the dependence in time and space, and the assets to use in the platform.” </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>“Given these differences, the arguments for using a platforms approach need to be considered. It is far from given that a platform approach is suitable for the specific context. In the thesis,  the factors to account for are sorted into three areas – the business strategy and the objectives for the solution business, the solution and organizational architecture, and the variation in customers’ needs.”</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>“In the use of a platform approach for product-services solutions, three main steps are identified: 1) The development of the platform itself – that is, the establishment of the assets to be shared among solutions, 2) customization efforts, and 3) personalization activities. The latter is about adapting the delivery of the solution, while customization is about configuration of the solution to make it useful in the customer’s operation.” </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>“In the development of the platforms, two approaches can be taken, starting in either an individual solution, or in the establishment of the basis. These approaches come with different benefits and drawbacks.”</div> <div> </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3"> </h3> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">What do you hope your research will lead to?</h3> <div> </div> <div>“I hope that the thesis can expand our understanding of how platforms might be used for different offerings through its specific focus on product-service solutions, comprising an offering with high degree of integration between products and services. This requires a broader view on what assets to share among the offerings, the thesis highlighting knowledge in particular.”</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>“In addition to arguments in favour of using platforms for these offerings, I hope that the thesis can shed light on the difficulties and challenges that product-oriented companies encounter when using a platform approach for solutions. To be able to manoeuvre such obstacles, there is first a need to understand them, and to be able to relate the investments needed to the potential benefits of a platform approach.”</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div><em><br />Text compilation: Daniel Karlsson</em> <br /></div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>Read the thesis <a href="">“On the use of platforms for product–service solutions”</a></div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>The thesis defence will be online on Zoom 11 June 2020 13.15, <a href="">find link here</a></div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>More about <a href="/en/Staff/Pages/siri-jagstedt.aspx">Siri Jagstedt</a></div> <div> </div> <div> </div>Tue, 02 Jun 2020 10:00:00 +0200 happens when scientists become entrepreneurs?<p><b>​In his doctoral thesis, Marouane Bousfiha explores how “academic entrepreneurs” combine the two very distinct roles of being both academic scholars and for-profit entrepreneurs. The findings suggest that the academic entrepreneurs actively learn and develop from being in two different worlds.</b></p><h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">What challenges do you focus on?</h3> <div>“Being both an academic researcher and a startup founder means frequently transitioning between two jobs that are governed by different values, norms and expectations. As academics, these individuals are expected to transparently share their results with a community of peers, consistently seek truth rather than financial or personal benefits, and actively expose their work to public scrutiny. As entrepreneurs, they are expected instead to privilege secrecy, uniqueness, and the maximization of personal gains.” </div> <div> </div> <div>“Combining these apparently different roles can be confusing and challenging. Yet, an increasing number of academic scientists are creating startups to commercialize their research results. In my research, I ask questions such as: ‘What is it like to simultaneously engage in these two lines of work?’ And ‘what can we learn if we compare the experiences of scientists from two different contexts, such as Chalmers and Stanford?’” </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">How do you address this challenge with your research?</h3> <div>“One of my research aims is to understand how academic entrepreneurs manage to combine their roles and in so doing construct a coherent professional identity. Given that many universities are aggressively promoting new initiatives to stimulate academic entrepreneurship, a lack of such detailed understanding of how university researchers live through the process of commercialization can cause the implementation of policies that are ineffective or even counterproductive. In contrast, a better understanding of how professors concretely experience being startup founders and university researchers could inform more fitting policies and guidelines in this regard.”   </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">What were the main findings? </h3> <div>“By actively engaging in entrepreneurial work, academic scientists learn how to identify and nurture cross-fertilization effects between the tasks and activities involved in both roles. </div> <div>For instance, they report how their long experience with writing research funding applications made them really good at pitching their ideas to investors, and how their experience leading and managing research groups at the university better prepared them to manage their startup employees. They also describe how their research and teaching got positively influenced as a result of their exposure to relevant and real-world problems in the startup.” </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">What do you hope your research will lead to?</h3> <div>“Instead of focusing on macrolevel explanations, I chose instead to study the actors who are at the front line, and whose everyday actions are creating the change towards more entrepreneurship in the university. I hope that my research can provide useful insights to institutional actors – e.g. policy makers, university administrators, public funding agencies – who are trying to design policies that are attuned to the practical realities of academic entrepreneurs.”</div> <div> </div> <div><em>Text compilation: Daniel Karlsson</em><br /> <br /></div> <div>More about the thesis, <a href="">”The Lived Experience of Academic Entrepreneurship: The interplay between practice, identity, and context” </a></div> <div> </div> <div>The thesis defence will be online on Zoom, 25 May at 13, <a href="">find link here</a></div> <div><br /></div> Wed, 20 May 2020 11:10:00 +0200 increases the number of solar panels on Swedish rooftops<p><b>​A new study from Chalmers University of Technology found that an information campaign led to a significant increase in the number of residential solar photovoltaic (PV) adoption in Sweden. The results have now been published in a scientific journal.</b></p>​<span style="background-color:initial">Chalmers researchers Alvar Palm and Björn Lantz, at the Department of Technology Management and Economics, have studied the effect of a Swedish information campaign for solar photovoltaics (PV) adoption that took place in Sweden in 2017. The campaign was led by municipal energy advisers. </span><div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">The campaign's goal was to increase the number of solar PV adoption on residential roofs in Sweden by providing information and raising awareness through seminars and individual counseling to homeowners. The initiative was carried out in more than 100 municipalities. </span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">&quot;Information initiatives promoting sustainable behavior are common. However, little is known about whether the campaigns work as intended. It is a complex topic to study, as it is difficult to know how the actual behavior of the target group changes after they have learned the information&quot;, says Alvar Palm.</span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">The researchers' analysis shows that the campaign significantly increased the number of solar PV adoption in the participating municipalities. During the campaign, the number of submitted and approved subsidy applications for solar PV adoption increased by 29 percent in the participating municipalities, compared to other municipalities. </span><span style="background-color:initial">The results still stand, even after removing applications that did not lead to an installation.​</span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">The study has now been published in the scientific journal Energy Policy.</span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><div><span style="background-color:initial">&quot;In the article, we argue, based on the results, that information campaigns can be a cost-effective way to increase the number of solar cells around the world and reduce carbon dioxide emissions in the energy sector&quot;, says Alvar Palm.</span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"></span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><img src="/en/departments/tme/news/Documents/AlvarPalm_BjörnLantz_650x240px.jpg" alt="AlvarPalm_BjörnLantz_650x240px.jpg" class="chalmersPosition-FloatLeft" style="margin:5px;width:540px;height:200px" /><br /></span>​</div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">Ch</span><span style="background-color:initial">almers researchers Alvar Palm and Björn Lantz.</span><br /></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><em>Photo: Ulrika Ernström and </em></span><span></span><span style="background-color:initial"><em>Oscar Mattsson​ respectively.</em></span></div> <em> </em><h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">About the study</h3> <div> </div> <div>In the study, Alvar Palm and Björn Lantz examined the effects of solar photovoltaics (PV)</div> <div> </div> <div>information campaign conducted in 2017 by municipal energy advisers in more than 100 municipalities. The outcome of the campaign in these municipalities was compared with other municipalities in a regression model with control variables.</div> <div> </div> <div><br /></div> <div> </div> <div>The analysis considered a set of control variables, such as irradiance (the amount of sunshine), population density, percental of green party support, the proportion of detached homes, and average income. The researchers also ensured that the installations were not more frequent in the participating municipalities even before the campaign.</div> <div> </div> <div><br /></div> <div> </div> <div>The increase in the number of solar photovoltaic adoptions also stands after the removal of applications that did not lead to confirmed installation. As the subsidy is generous and relatively easy to apply, the researchers estimate that the number of applications granted well reflects the number of actual installations. This is also shown by previous experience.</div> <div> </div> <div><br /></div> <div> </div> <div>Finally, it was ensured that the number of installations did not decrease under normal conditions after the end of the campaign, which could have indicated that the observed effect did not reflect a real increase but merely a displacement of time for the installations. All in all, the researchers believe that the evidence is strong for the observed effect to be real.</div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3"><span>Article</span></h3> <div><span style="background-color:initial;color:rgb(33, 33, 33)">Palm, A., Lantz, B., 2020. <a href="" target="_blank">&quot;Information dissemination and residential solar PV adoption rates: The effect of an information campaign in Sweden&quot;</a>. Energy Policy, vol. 142. </span><span style="background-color:initial;color:rgb(33, 33, 33)">(article free to read until 24 June)</span><span style="background-color:initial;color:rgb(33, 33, 33)"> </span></div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">Contact</h3> <div> </div> <div><a href="/en/staff/Pages/alvar-palm.aspx" target="_blank"><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/ichtm.gif" alt="" />Alvar Palm</a></div> <div> </div> <div><a href="/en/staff/Pages/lantzb.aspx" target="_blank"><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/ichtm.gif" alt="" />Björn Lantz​</a></div> <div> </div></div>Mon, 11 May 2020 10:00:00 +0200 crucial for development of renewable energy technologies<p><b>​How can start-ups develop renewable energy technologies together with different organisations such as firms and universities? That is the topic of Maria Landqvist’s doctoral thesis on technological development and innovation in business networks. The empirical area of Maria’s thesis is the Swedish energy system – and especially how start-ups strive to become established therein – and theoretically how resources are developed through interaction. One example regards how the growing of algae for new energy solutions requires a certain type of water from other actors.</b></p><h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">​What challenges do you focus on your research?</h3> <div>“To understand how new renewable energy technology can become useful. In other words, how it can become integrated into not only the start-up’s potential customers’ processes but also developing partners’ and suppliers’ processes. Theoretically the challenge is to contribute with additional understanding of resource interaction and thereby contribute to the industrial network approach” </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">How are you aiming to address the problem with your research?</h3> <div>“By seeing technological development and innovation as an interactive phenomenon and thus see a product as a result of resource combinations taking place between several organizations, I have had the possibility to analyse how the resources need to be adapted to become useful. Resources can be either technical or organizational such as materials, tools and knowledge.  As part of creating a better understanding of resource interaction, I have developed an analytical tool to capture different resource interaction patterns and consequently facilitate the evaluation of potential hindrance and enablers for a resource to become useful.”</div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">What were the main findings of your research?</h3> <div>“From a theoretical point of view my research has contributed with an analytical tool when it comes to understanding embedding of resources into business networks and how resources are connected across firm boundaries.”</div> <div><br /></div> <div> “My study has shown that interaction is key for start-ups to commercialise their ideas, and especially to achieve mutual adaptations of resources between the start-ups and its collaboration partners. Furthermore, it is of importance to acknowledge the interplay between several business relationships in the business network. Namely, some relationships may hinder others to develop and some may facilitate others to develop. It is therefore of importance to identify and prioritize which relationships to invest in.”</div> <div><br /></div> <div>“Looking at the case of Swedish Algae Factory and its algae production, the importance of relationships becomes clear. To enable functional harvesting of the algae it was necessary that the interface between the fish farm and the fish water at Smögen Lax and Rena Hav worked well, as it facilitates the growing of the algae. Hence, several actors were involved to enable harvesting of the algae.”</div> <div><br /></div> <div>“A different example is the case of Aqua Robur and its micro turbine. The device was adapted to fit into certain water pipes and water flows, with regards to specific users. If the turbine would be aimed for another context, the previous adaptations may hinder new adaptations to take form. In turn, this may hinder other relationships to develop.”</div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">What do you hope your results will lead to? </h3> <div>“I hope my results will lead to a better understanding of the role of the business network and how important the business network is for start-ups to develop useful products. By seeing the product as resource that needs to fit into other actors’ resources there is a possibility to capture the adaptations necessary to create a useful product, both internally but also across firm boundaries.”</div> <div><br /></div> <div>“I hope my results can guide the evaluation of which start-ups to invest in. It is important to understand how an industrial partner and its resources can bridge the start-up into the energy system. Hence, it is important to invest not only in the start-up but also its network. This is of utter importance in the energy system facing a challenging transition period. ”<br /><br /><br /><em>Text compilation: Daniel Karlsson</em></div> <div> </div> <div>Read Maria Landqvist’s doctoral thesis <a href="">“Patterns of resource interaction in resource constellations: The case of start-ups approaching the Swedish energy system”</a></div> <div><br /></div> <div>The thesis defence will be online on Zoom, 17 April at 13.15, <a href="">find link here</a>. </div> <div><br /></div> <div>More about <a href="/en/Staff/Pages/marland.aspx">Maria Landqvist</a></div> <div> </div>Tue, 14 Apr 2020 00:00:00 +0200 vast cost of fast fashion<p><b>​The fashion industry may account for up to 10 per cent of global greenhouse pollution. Up to 92 million tonnes of waste and 79 trillion litres of water are consumed per year in order to make garments. A system-wide transition is needed immediately to reduce environmental costs of the fashion industry, a new study from Chalmers and other international universities concludes.</b></p>​Fundamental changes to the fashion business model, including an urgent transition away from 'fast fashion', are needed to improve the long-term sustainability of the fashion supply chain, argue the authors of a new article just published in <em>Nature Reviews Earth &amp; Environment</em>, a new online journal launched in 2020 within the prestigious <em>Nature</em> family of scientific journals. <br /><br />The study was led by Aalto University professor, <a href="" target="_blank">Kirsi Niinimäki</a>, together with Chalmers' professor, <a href="/en/staff/Pages/gregory-peters.aspx" target="_blank">Greg Peters</a>, from the Department of Technology Management and Economics, and researchers from four other international universities.<br /><br />The fashion industry is one of the most polluting industries and may account for up to 10 per cent of global greenhouse pollution. However, the industry continues to grow, despite rising awareness of the environmental impacts, in part owing to the rise of fast fashion, which relies on cheap manufacturing, frequent consumption, and short-lived garment use.<br />    <br />The authors identify the environmental impacts of the fashion supply chain, from production to consumption, focusing on water use, chemical pollution, CO2 emissions and textile waste. For example, the industry produces over 92 million tonnes of waste and consumes 79 trillion litres of water per year, with developing countries often bearing the burden for developed countries. These impacts highlight the need for substantial changes in the industry, including deceleration of manufacturing and introduction of sustainable practices throughout the supply chain, the authors say.<br /><br />&quot;Slow fashion is the future&quot;, the authors conclude, but &quot;we need a new system-wide understanding of how to transition towards this model, requiring creativity and collaboration between designers and manufacturers, various stakeholders, and end consumers.&quot; <br /><br /><div>A joined-up approach is required with the textile industry investing in cleaner technologies, the fashion industry developing new sustainable business models, and policy-makers modifying legislation. Consumers also have a crucial role and must change their consumption habits and be ready to pay higher prices that account for the environmental impact of fashion.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>Solutions presented in this graph<br /></strong><span style="display:inline-block"><br /></span><br /><img src="/en/departments/tme/news/PublishingImages/Clothing.png" alt="" style="margin:5px;width:680px;height:243px" /><br /><em>Figure retrieved from the article '</em><span style="background-color:initial"><em>The environmental price of fast fashion'.</em></span></div> <div><br /></div> <div><span></span></div> <div><strong>Key points</strong><br /><ul><li>The textile and fashion industry has a long and complex supply chain, starting from agriculture and petrochemical production (fibre production) to manufacturing, logistics and retail.</li> <li>Each production step has an environmental impact due to water, material, chemical and energy use.</li> <li>Many chemicals used in textile manufacturing are harmful for the environment, factory workers and consumers.</li> <li>Most environmental impacts occur in the textile- manufacturing and garment- manufacturing countries, but textile waste is found globally.</li> <li>Fast fashion has increased the material throughput in the system. Fashion brands are now producing almost twice the amount of clothing today compared with before the year 2000.</li> <li>Current fashion- consumption practices result in large amounts of textile waste, most of which is incinerated, landfilled or exported to developing countries.</li></ul> <div><strong>Article</strong></div> <div>Niinimäki, K. Peters, G., Dahlbo, H., Perry, P., Rissanen, T. and Gwilt, A. (2020) The environmental price of fast fashion. Nature Reviews; Earth and Environment.</div> <div><h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">More information</h3> <div><a href="" target="_blank"><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/icgen.gif" alt="" />Article to be found here</a></div> <div><a href="" target="_blank"><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/icgen.gif" alt="" />Nature Reviews Earth &amp; Environment</a><br /><a href="" target="_blank"><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/icgen.gif" alt="" />Summary of the article in The Guardian​</a><br /></div> <div><p class="p1" style="font-stretch:normal;font-size:12px;line-height:normal;font-family:helvetica"><br /></p> <p class="p1" style="font-stretch:normal;font-size:12px;line-height:normal;font-family:helvetica"></p> <div> <span style="background-color:initial;color:rgb(33, 33, 33);font-family:inherit;font-size:16px;font-weight:600">Contact</span></div></div> <div><a href="" target="_blank"><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/icgen.gif" alt="" />Kirsi Niinimäki</a>, Associate Professor, Department of Design, Aalto University </div> <div><a href="" target="_blank"><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/icgen.gif" alt="" />Greg Peters</a>, Professor at the Department of Technology Management and Economics, Chalmers<br /></div> <div> </div> <div><em>Adopted press release from Aalto University School of Arts, Design and Architecture.<span></span><span style="display:inline-block"></span></em></div></div></div> ​Wed, 08 Apr 2020 10:00:00 +0200 approaches for improving the value of solutions in business networks<p><b>​An interaction-centric approach to solutions – where actors jointly organise their activities and resources – could improve both the efficiency and value of the solutions. This is a key conclusion of Klas Hedvall’s doctoral thesis. With the focus on maintenance for heavy vehicles, he recommends the various actors of the transport industry to coordinate their solutions in order to improve the efficiency of vehicle maintenance, vehicle utilisation, and road transport.</b></p><h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">​What challenges do you focus on your research?</h3> <div>“Firms are interconnected by business relationships and form business networks. In these business networks, firms interact to develop, sell, purchase, and use solutions. They also influence each other through linking activities and combining resources across firm boundaries, resulting in that solutions become connected and interdependent. As a consequence, changes to a solution at one end of the business network may drive the need for changes to other solutions elsewhere in the network. The efficiency, effectiveness, and value of a solution therefore also depend on other solutions connected to it.”</div> <div> </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3"> How are you aiming to address or solve the problem?</h3> <div>“Through my research, which draws from an interorganisational perspective, I study the structures and mechanisms resulting in the interconnectedness and interdependencies among solutions. With a better understanding of those structures and dynamics, we could establish a clearer view of how firms jointly could cooperate to improve the value of solutions.”</div> <div> </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3"> What were the main findings?</h3> <div>“The business network I have studied provides ample examples of how interconnected firms influence each other, resulting in that solutions developed, deployed and used to become connected and interdependent. Therefore, a key conclusion of my research is that an interaction-centric approach to solutions, where actors jointly organise the activities and resources involved in connected solutions, could improve the efficiency and value of solutions.”</div> <div> </div> <div>“The empirical focus for my research is maintenance solutions for heavy vehicles used for road transport. The findings highlight that the activities and resources involved in maintenance solutions are connected to the activities and resources of other solutions, such as the transport of goods. For that reason, the thesis recommends hauliers, transport buyers, vehicle manufacturers, and workshops to jointly coordinate solutions in order to improve the efficiency of vehicle maintenance, vehicle utilisation, and road transport.”</div> <div> </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3"> What do you hope your research will lead to?</h3> <div>“My research aims to further the current understandings about solutions in business networks. The conceptual model developed in the thesis will hopefully inspire new perspectives in the scholarly discussion concerning solutions. The model highlights how notions such as organising and value of solutions in business networks could be differently understood and approached when applying an interorganisational and interactive perspective.”</div> <div> </div> <div>“The thesis and its conceptual model also shed light on the challenges faced by managers involved in developing, deploying and using solutions in business networks. The results of my research points to that the interaction of firms is crucial when managers strive to improve the efficiency and value of solutions. The research reported in the thesis could thus hopefully inspire managers in the industry to apply different approaches to solutions. For the transport industry specifically, the aim is to support managers when striving to further improve the efficiency of vehicle utilisation and road transport through new approaches to vehicle maintenance.”</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div><em>Klas Hedvall is an industrial PhD from Volvo Group Trucks Technology.</em></div> <div> </div> <div><a href="/en/departments/tme/news/Pages/Klas-Hedvall-studies-effecient-maintenance.aspx">Further reading</a> on Klas Hedvall’s empirical research on heavy vehicle maintenance:</div> <div> </div> <div>Read the thesis <a href="">“Conceptualising Solutions in Business Networks: The Case of Heavy Vehicle Maintenance”</a> </div> <div> </div> <div><a href="">&gt;&gt; Klas Hedvall will defend his thesis on 25 March 2020 at 13.15. <br />The defence will be streamed online, please see information here &gt;&gt;</a><br />(see under Public defence - Online PhD defence)</div>Mon, 23 Mar 2020 14:00:00 +0100 don&#39;t have room for inequality<p><b>​​We&#39;re making room for the future​​​!​</b></p><p class="chalmersElement-P"><strong>International Women's Day 2020</strong></p>Fri, 06 Mar 2020 14:00:00 +0100