Applications on research grants must contain clear descriptions of how research can contribute to benefits and changes in society, so-called impact. It was a major theme during the part of the course that began at Karlstad University.
“- A new thinking project idea, how to calculate and how much money is expected to cost is not enough to get research grants. One has to be able to show how the research to be conducted can mean a change in society, says Fredrik Östlin, Innovation Advisor at Grants and Innovation Office at Karlstad University. That knowledge does not have all doctoral students, and that is one of the reasons why this course is needed.”
Cooperation between four universities
For the seventh year, the PhD student is currently in the framework of the Innovation Office Fyrklövern, which is a collaboration between Karlstad University, Linnaeus University, Mid Sweden University and Örebro University. This year, 18 PhD students from the four universities participate.
Feeling of context
Lennart Karlsson graduated from the PhD student two years ago. In addition to his dissertation project, he is currently developing a lab with the ambition to gather real knowledge about children’s and young people’s digital skills.
“The course made me understand the importance of how my research and my previous professional experiences in life can contribute to social benefits. It gave me a sense of context when I understood how my research can and should be returned to society.”
Important support for researchers
The Innovation Office Fyrklövern where the four vice chancellor constitute the steering committee is the organizer of the course.
“There is such support built at the higher education institutions, contributing to the support of the academic and non-academic perspectives. I do not perceive them as contradictions, but increasingly natural conditions for each other. This is important even when I apply for research grants, “says Lennart Karlsson.