PhD projects

PhD projects

Our current PhD research projects advance knowledge in various frontiers in innovation and entrepreneurship.


Research area: Entrepreneurial teams

Using affective interaction and AI to predict new venture team performance

Nicola's PhD investigates the role of emotions, affect and physiology in new venture teams. Specifically, developing a framework for how these interpersonal and social factors can influence both team performance and entrepreneur wellbeing. Nicola adopts novel methodology in her PhD, drawing on AI algorithms to track biometric and facial expression analysis, as well as big epidemiological data to understand how mental health and addictions impact new venture performance.

Phd Student: Nicola Anne Thomas

Use your brain

Research area: Innovation and corporate entrepreneurship

The future of neurodiversity in teams

Turning weaknesses into strengths – leveraging neurodiversity in entrepreneurship and leadership

Neurodevelopmental disorders (e.g. ADHD & autism) are, by definition, impairing and go along with social problems and negative side-effects such as stress and anxiety. At the same time, most traits are not universally positive or negative. Neurodiversity is a concept where these neurological differences are to be recognized and respected as any other human variation. With this project, we aim to remove stigma related to neurodevelopmental disorders by highlighting the inherent benefits and strengths of neurodiversity for innovation-related teamwork. By embracing diversity and empowering individuals, we equip neurodiverse individuals with the skills of future work. By doing so, we try to find a way to prepare people to work or lead neuro-diverse teams of entrepreneurs or within a corporate setting by training them to be open and welcome “anomalies” (in the environment and in people).

Phd Student: Laurine Keller

Tunnel with tubes

research area: open innovation, open entrepreneurship and eco system

Innovation impact of big science organizations

Innovation impact of big science organizations – conditions, interactions, and knowledge spillover

Big Science Organizations (BSOs) - known as research infrastructures in Europe - are increasingly important as influencers in innovation ecosystems, as they are capable of driving technological advancement for the relevant industries. Studies on BSOs have shown their importance in technological breakthrough and their impact on national and international economies and society.

The relationship between BSOs and industrial firms is an area of interest in terms of innovation in recent research. BSO-industry collaborations both create new knowledge and engage in knowledge spillover, generating impact on both scientific and innovative performance for those involved. The theories on knowledge spillover, open innovation, supply-driven innovation and proximity economics will be used as the foundation for this project, and the areas to which this project will make theoretical contributions.

PhD Student: Erika Susan Dietrichson

Ice and water

Research area: Sustainable entrepreneurship and innovation

Creating sustainability agents in the Arctic

Transscalar innovation and sustainability: Creating sustainability agents in the high north and Arctic

This PhD project is a collaborative effort between the Technical University of Denmark and the University of the Faroe Islands. The purpose of the project is threefold: 1) To research the interplay between different scale of influence, internal and external to the University of the Faroe Islands, relating to how sustainable innovation is to be both implemented and practiced. A main component of this work will also include the production of explanatory process models that illustrate the issue from an institutional perspective, organisational and geographic (Arctic) scales. 2) To develop practical solutions for implementation of best-practices and development of a culture that embraces the notion of sustainability agents. 3) Development of initiatives that ensure that new knowledge is transferred, and innovative practices are anchored at the University of the Faroe Islands and, hopefully, related stakeholders.

The thesis explores the premise that universities have an increasingly vital role to play in the anchoring and implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals within society and argues that socially oriented innovation should be embraced by institutions of higher learning in order to contribute positively to the future adherence to the Sustainable Development Goals. The thesis makes use of the following core concepts to make its arguments; Academic fourth-mission statements of sustainable co-creation, quintuple-helix collaborations with external stakeholders and the use of a combination of open and social innovation tactics to maximise reach.

While the thesis mostly concerns itself with small institutions of higher learning in the high north and Arctic, it will be assumed that the findings will be applicable to most small and medium sized universities and institutions of higher learning wishing to start implementing the SDG.

Phd student: Martin Mohr Olsen

Person facing pc

Research area: Entrepreneurship and digitalization

Artificial intelligence supporting innovation and entrepreneurship

New functions and effects of intermediaries for innovation and entrepreneurship, equipped with artificial Intelligence

The goal of this research project is to find how artificial intelligence/machine learning tools can support innovation intermediaries (hubs, incubators, science parks, clusters, networks, RTOs, etc.) when providing innovation and/or entrepreneurial services to industry. Furthermore, we study how the implementation of these technologies fits in the digitalisation strategy of these organisations.

The outcome of the project aims to provide a framework for public and private organisms designing, implementing and/or running Innovation intermediary’s organizations and implementing AI/ML technologies.

post its on window

Research area: Entrepreneurship and digitalisation

Digital business model innovation

Digital business model innovation of small- and medium-sized Firms

Digital transformation is affecting virtually all industries. In fact, it is not a question of if but rather of when and how for most firms. Innovation, and more recently, business model innovation are seen to be drivers of continuous competitive advantage in this challenging context. In order to kick-start and maintain a process of digital business model innovation, more and more companies rely on (digital) innovation units (DIUs) – such as labs – to explore and develop digital opportunities. Yet, recent closings of famous DIUs (e.g. Disney's Research Lab in 2016, Coca Cola's Founder Initiative in 2016) clearly indicate that DIUs do not guarantee success, and the knowledge about these labs has not sufficiently matured. This research project tries to contribute to this gap by focusing on DIUs in Denmark and Japan and their challenges and best practices.

Phd Student: Matthias Trischler


Research area: Entrepreneurship didactics and diversity

The bias in gendered entrepreneurship

Farnaz is investigating how gender bias affects the gender gap in entrepreneurship. She is interested in examining how the social construction of gender and entrepreneurship influence individual cognitions and perceptions, and inform biases, which effect the entrepreneurial processes in various ways. She is passionate about finding a solution by exploring how machine learning and big data can help expose implicit gender biases to reduce the gender gap in entrepreneurship.

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