University-industry Intermediaries as Facilitators for Innovative Ecosystems: A Comparison of Denmark and Sweden

Henrik Tinsfeldt

Student thesis: Master thesis


This dissertation examines technology transfer offices’ management of proximity between university scientists and industry players during technology transfers of licensed university-owned patents. The study applies a comparative research design, using greater Copenhagen and Scania as proxies for Denmark and Sweden. More specifically, the technology transfer offices at University of Copenhagen and Lund University represent the objects for the analysis. The reason behind the juxtaposition of the two economies derives from an interesting difference in academia’s ownership of intellectual property. The cases studies rest on qualitative data collected from semi-structured interviews of the staff from the technology transfer offices, university scientists and employees from the private sector. The theoretical framework of proximity guides the investigation of the TTOs ability to facilitate the technology transfer process within four dimensions: cognitive, organizational, institutional and social. Each dimension holds an array of items, which in sum determine the TTO’s performance. Due to the difference in institutional and inventor ownership in Denmark and Sweden respectively, the dissertation assumes TTOs in Sweden experience greater difficulties in managing proximity. The dissertation finds the Swedish TTO has particular complications in managing the technology transfer process within the institutional dimension as the inventor ownership creates roadblocks for mediation. These roadblocks also negatively influence the organizational dimension, where behavioural routines and incentives hampers the Swedish TTO’s creation of a shared space of relations. Within the cognitive and social dimensions, Denmark and Sweden differ on the individual underlying items, but perform overall equally

EducationsMSocSc in Organisational Innovation and Entrepreneurship , (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2017
Number of pages143
SupervisorsSusana Borrás