The innovation process

Smart Housing Småland is one of 17 Vinnväxt initiatives funded by Vinnova that promote sustainable regional growth by developing internationally competitive research and innovation environments in specific areas of growth.

Our work is based on an approach to open innovation supporting the idea that knowledge shared by many contributes to a faster development. The innovation environment gathers actors around common challenges and creates contacts. This process initiates activities that accelerate and catalyze research, development and innovation work in the industries for industrial production of wooden houses and flat glass processing. Based on needs, priorities and interest, the activities are created within various forms of activities such as projects, platforms, thematic groups and test beds.

Smart Housing Småland operates in the space between academia, society and business creating fruitful meetings and stimulates ideas to thrive. Activities and projects stimulate meetings between sectors, organizations and different perspectives. This work is not only local, regional or national but also international.

Smart Housing Småland – Then innovation process

To support research, development and innovation in the best way, we work in an innovation process that is divided into five steps: initiation of idea, concept development, project development / application for funding, implementation of projects and a learning phase for dissemination of knowledge. The process management of Smart Housing Småland follows the projects along the way with a more focused involvement in the beginning and end of the innovation process (steps 0 and 1 and 4).

0. Initiating the idea

The innovation process begins with an idea initiated in companies, academia, region, municipality or in the board, a thematic group or the reference group of Smart Housing Småland. Unconditional meetings increase the probability that different stakeholders who have the same interest but with complementary driving forces meet. These meetings can provide ideas to collaborate on. The process management of Smart Housing Småland catches the idea to support and maintain its development into something that can be implemented in different project forms.

1. Concept development

Smart Housing Småland looks at the idea and initiate contacts with suitable competences. From the network, common needs and similar ideas and actors can be identified and connected. Constellations are strengthened using meetings, workshops and forums for dialogues with actors who can contribute to the innovation.

When an idea is judged to have potential to develop into a project, stakeholders refine the idea into a concept together with expert competences and project managers. A proposal for further development of the project is prepared and a decision on financing for continued work is decided by the board of Smart Housing Småland.

2. Project development and application for funding

The project proposal must develop into an R & D project and be able to finance an implementation. Funding is applied for from an external funding agency such as Vinnova, the Swedish Energy Government and more.
The application work is carried out primarily by the organization that has been granted funds from Smart Housing Småland for project development. The process management can, however, assist in the focus of the project and in finding the right project consortium.

3. Project implementation

If funding is granted, the project is carried out by the project organization. The process management of Smart Housing Småland follows up the project and participates in a possible steering group or reference group and as a disseminator of work and results.

4. Learning

When the project is finished, Smart Housing Småland feedbacks on the project and collects the knowledge that has been created. Furthermore, we help out spreading results and telling success stories. Ideas for new projects – or spin off projects – are also captured here to get them into the first steps of the innovation process again.