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  • 1.
    Karlsson, Bo
    et al.
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Industriell Ekonomi.
    Hersinger, Anders
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Industriell Ekonomi.
    Kurkkio, Monika
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Industriell Ekonomi.
    Hybrid accountants in the age of the business partner: exploring institutional drivers in a mining company2019Ingår i: Journal of Management Control, ISSN 2191-4761, E-ISSN 2191-477X, Vol. 30, nr 2, s. 185-211Artikel i tidskrift (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    This paper addresses the question of how it is possible, despite the persuasive characteristics of the business partner role, to explain the prevalence of hybrid accountants in management accounting practice. This research question is addressed from an institutional theory vantage point, suggesting that institutional drivers exist in every organization that shape the role of the practicing actors. The empirical evidence presented is drawn from a case study of a mining company pursuing a change program to transform its management accountants into business partners. The results illustrate how the hybrid accountant role is formed through an interplay among regulative, normative, and cognitive institutional drivers that influence the role of the management accountants in opposing directions. Because of the tension between facilitating and impeding institutional drivers, the change program toward business partnering results in a hybrid accountant role which is characterized by a combination of traditional and business partner traits. Hence, the conclusions suggest that the prevalence of hybrid accountants in management accounting practice can be explained by tensions between opposing institutional drivers that contribute to a compound role.

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  • 2.
    Karlsson, Bo
    et al.
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Industriell Ekonomi.
    Kurkkio, Monika
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Industriell Ekonomi.
    Hersinger, Anders
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Industriell Ekonomi.
    The role of the controller in strategic capital investment projects: bridging the gap of multiple topoi2019Ingår i: Journal of Management and Governance, ISSN 1385-3457, E-ISSN 1572-963X, Vol. 23, nr 3, s. 813-838Artikel i tidskrift (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    The literature on capital budgeting and investment proposals is rich with techniques, such as portfolio management and stage-gate project management, which rely on a rational approach to strategic capital investment projects. There is, however, a lack of research on the process of managing and coordinating strategic capital investment projects where investment proposals and decisions are seen as human constructions. The controller is an important but seldom noticed actor in this process. This paper draws on a pragmatic constructivist framework to create an understanding of the controller role in strategic capital investment projects and how the controller acts to contribute to create a functioning construct causality in such projects. We conducted a case study of a mining company, which had recently decided on strategic capital investments resulting in the moving of two towns to enable continued operations. Based on a two-step thematic data analysis, our results illustrate that the controller is an essential actor in strategic capital investment projects with high degrees of uncertainty and multiple decision-participants. By using the pragmatic constructivist framework we find that gap-bridging between multiple decision-participants is an essential role for controller, in order to create successful investment proposals. The case study further illustrates that controllers need to learn to speak technical and operational language and to become knowledgeable about business operations to gain trust in order create a functioning construct causality. Our study provides an actor-focused understanding of the organizational and managerial processes within strategic capital investment projects, illustrating how the controller contributes to construct causality therein.

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  • 3.
    Karlsson, Bo
    et al.
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Industriell Ekonomi.
    Kurkkio, Monika
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Industriell Ekonomi.
    Using calculations in the early phase of strategic capital investment projects: insights from the mining industry2018Ingår i: Qualitative Research in Accounting & Management/Emerald, ISSN 1176-6093, E-ISSN 1758-7654, Vol. 15, nr 4, s. 465-484Artikel i tidskrift (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    Purpose

    The purpose of this paper is to identify and describe how calculations are used in the early phase of strategic capital investment projects (SCIPs) in the mining context and thereby create an understanding of what calculations do in these situations.

    Design/methodology/approach

    The authors conducted a case study based on interviews with project managers, controllers and top-level managers, as well as documents and observations.

    Findings

    The empirical evidence provides key insights into the different uses of calculations in the early phase of SCIPs in the mining industry. The authors found evidence that calculations in the early phase of SCIPs are used to generate ideas, support learning and discussions, evaluate decisions and act as a mediating device.

    Research limitations/implications

    The paper is based on a single organization, and therefore, the findings of the paper are limited to theoretical generalization.

    Practical implications

    The study has practical implications directed toward top management, controllers and project managers working with SCIPs. This study suggests that calculations in the early phase are used to unite and create a shared view in the early phase rather than to present rational answers to different investment decision. Calculations can also be used to direct attention toward important areas, sort out and prioritize among ideas, communicate a shared view and function as a template. Thus, calculations are essential in the early phase as they help to transform activities into actions.

    Originality/value

    This paper contributes to the accounting literature in which it has been emphasized that we still know little of strategic capital budgeting processes, with insights into the multiple uses of calculations in the early phase of SCIPs. We also argue that calculations act as mediating devices in the early phase of SCIPs as they provide a common frame of reference and a basis for action.

  • 4.
    Lindström, John
    et al.
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för system- och rymdteknik, Signaler och system.
    Kurkkio, Monika
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Industriell Ekonomi.
    Nilsson, Kent
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Industriell Ekonomi.
    Functional Products business model elements: five industrial cases mapped to Hill categories2016Ingår i: Procedia CIRP, ISSN 2212-8271, E-ISSN 2212-8271, Vol. 47, s. 513-518Artikel i tidskrift (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    The paper addresses the Functional Products business model and how its elements are mapped to Hill categories in five industrial cases. The Hill categories include: order-winners, order-losers and qualifiers. The objective for Functional Products is to provide a function to customers with an agreed-upon level of availability, productivity or efficiency, etc. The paper outlines how different cases and their offers, based upon the Functional Products business model, can be element-wise mapped to Hill categories. Insight into the importance of the different business model elements provides valuable knowledge for an appropriate planning, design, sales and provision of Functional Products, as well as for determining how much effort, resources and money to spend on keeping the status of the element sharp, up-to-date, acceptable or just present.

  • 5.
    Nilsson, Anders
    et al.
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Industriell Ekonomi.
    Kurkkio, Monika
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Industriell Ekonomi.
    Accounting on the move: the construction of financial accounting practice when moving a town2015Konferensbidrag (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    This paper addresses the question of how financial accounting practice is constructed in a company during a social process with cultural, economic and institutional dimensions. The purpose of the paper is to provide an account of how the Swedish state-owned mining company LKAB constructed financial accounting practice associated with the decision to move the town of Kiruna in order to exploit mineral findings located below the town in its original location. The paper adopts an internal financial officer perspective and provides insights concerning the process from an introductory analysis in 2007 to the decision to build a new town in 2014. The deliberations include timeliness, asset/liability valuation, capitalization/expense and tax deductability during a process of interplay between local politicians, government, the accounting profession, tax authorities and international accounting standards. The results suggest that the process of constructing financial accounting practice is triggered by context, iterative, and characterized by trial-and-error during the search for solutions. In turn, the emerging financial accounting practice has implications for the design of the new town.

  • 6.
    Karlsson, Bo
    et al.
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Industriell Ekonomi.
    Kurkkio, Monika
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Industriell Ekonomi.
    Nilsson, Anders
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Industriell Ekonomi.
    The controller role in strategic capital investment projects: an actor’s approach2015Konferensbidrag (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    There is a rich literature on techniques, such as portfolio management and stage-gate project management, which typically relies on a rational approach to the management of strategic capital investment projects. There is however a lack of research which focuses on the process of creating and managing strategic capital investment projects. An important, but seldom noticed, actor in this process is the controller. Hence, little is known about the controller role in strategic capital investment projects. The purpose of this paper is to investigate the controller role in strategic capital investment projects and to provide insights about how the controller role is performed and about expectations on this role among the controllers themselves, project managers and top management. A case study was conducted in a large mining company in the north of Sweden encompassing interviews with controllers and managers involved in strategic capital investment projects. The selected case study organization was considered suitable because the mining industry is characterized by long production cycles and an ongoing need for capital investments which typically are expensive and involve complex and uncertain situations. The study shows that the tasks associated with the traditional controller role still constitute an important part of the controllers’ daily work in strategic capital investment projects, although the controller role is perceived as much broader. Another result is that controllers in strategic capital investment projects need to be able to adapt their role to suit specific situations. More specifically, in complex situations controllers need to be able to handle subjective information and to modify financial information for purposes such as predicting future outcomes. Controllers strive towards an adaption of their role towards analytical and strategic work and use experience and knowledge of the organization gained over time to broaden their role. Expectations from different actors are sometimes conflicting and create demands on both the work role and the skills needed by the controllers. These expectations keep the controllers from completely leaving the traditional role, thus to some extent preventing role adaptation.Keywords: actor’s approach, controllers, role of the controller, mining industry, strategic capital investment projects

  • 7.
    Karlsson, Bo
    et al.
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Industriell Ekonomi.
    Kurkkio, Monika
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Industriell Ekonomi.
    Nilsson, Anders
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Industriell Ekonomi.
    The role of the controller in strategic capital investment projects: a pragmatic constructivist view2015Konferensbidrag (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    There is a rich literature on techniques, such as portfolio management and stage-gate project management, which relies on a rational approach to strategic capital investment projects. There is however a lack of research on the process of creating and managing strategic capital investment projects. In particular, the controller is an important but seldom noticed actor in this process. This paper draws on a pragmatic constructivist framework to explore the role of the controller in strategic capital investment projects, to provide insights about how the role of the controller is constructed and about expectations on this role among the controllers themselves, project managers and top management. A case study was conducted in a Swedish mining corporation encompassing interviews, observations and documents pertaining to controllers and project managers involved in strategic capital investment projects. The research setting was chosen because of the heavy investment phase characterizing the case study organization and the access granted. The results illustrate that tasks associated with the traditional controller role constitute an important part of the role of the controller in strategic capital investment projects, although the controllers themselves envision their role as broader. The results indicate that controllers in strategic capital investment projects need to be able to tailor their role to suit specific situations. Although controllers themselves emphasize subjective information and the ability to make value-based assessments, managerial expectations and formal role descriptions mostly focus on facts and logic. At the same time, controllers and project managers wish to be trusted by each other but seem not to trust one another. We conclude that the role of the controller in strategic capital investment projects seems to be constructed through an intricate interplay between the views and desires of the controllers themselves, expectations from managers and organizational guidelines stipulating proper controller behavior. As ‘hybrid accountants’, the controllers experience tension between the traditional and the business partner dimensions.

  • 8.
    Kurkkio, Monika
    et al.
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Industriell Ekonomi.
    Frishammar, Johan
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Innovation och Design.
    Söderholm, Patrik
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Samhällsvetenskap.
    Ejdemo, Thomas
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Samhällsvetenskap.
    Mapping the Nordic mining and metal industry: for the purpose of enhancing and developing its innovative capability2014Rapport (Övrig (populärvetenskap, debatt, mm))
    Abstract [en]

    First, a descriptive overview of the Nordic miningand metal industry is provided. It shows that thereare a number of disparities among the firms in theNordic mining and metal industry, but there are alsomany similarities. Finland and Sweden both havewell-developed mining and metal industries. The geo-logical conditions are comparable and, consequently,production and outlook are in the main relativelysimilar for firms producing minerals and metals.Norway’s mineral and metal production mostlyconsists of industrial minerals, the potential of whichis promising. Greenland has great potential in its newmineral deposits. However, there are several challenges(e.g. difficulties in accessing the new mineral deposits,and problems related to infrastructure and a shortageof skilled workers) which need to be overcomebefore the mineral deposits can be explored.Key challenges for innovation have been identifiedand categorised into (a) specific challenges for keyactors and (b) cross-border challenges involvingseveral groups of producing firms in the Nordicmining and metal industry. The major innovationchallenges specific to the mining companies arein-creased production costs,atraditional and conservativemind-setanda short-term focus on exploration.Majorinnovation challenges for the metal producers areprimarilyold production plants and technology, low profitmargins and lack of employees with the right type of skills.The equipment suppliers’ foremost challenges arethe difficulties ofconducting experiments and testsandgaining access to the right type of knowledge.The analysisshows thatdemand for sustainable mining, difficultiesrelated to the exploration of new mineral deposits, a conserv-ative attitude towards innovation in the mining industry,global competition and procurement methods that emphasisepure cost concerns and the absence of pilot and demonstra-tion plantsare at this time the foremost cross-borderchallenges for innovation within the Nordic miningand metal industry.

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  • 9.
    Frishammar, Johan
    et al.
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Innovation och Design.
    Kurkkio, Monika
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Industriell Ekonomi.
    Abrahamsson, Lena
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Arbetsvetenskap.
    Lichtenthaler, Ulrich
    University of Mannheim.
    Antecedents and consequences of firms' process innovation capability: a literature review and a conceptual framework2012Ingår i: IEEE transactions on engineering management, ISSN 0018-9391, E-ISSN 1558-0040, Vol. 59, nr 4, s. 519-529Artikel i tidskrift (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    Process innovation can allow both efficiency and effectiveness gains and is a key source of long-term competitive advantage in manufacturing firms. However, the literature on managing process innovation is broad and fragmented, and it has not yet been systematically reviewed in the scholarly literature. Drawing on a capability-based perspective, the aim of this paper is to provide a systematic review of the process innovation literature. We synthesize our findings into a conceptual framework displaying the antecedents and consequences of firms' process innovation capability. First, a parsimonious review of the process innovation literature is conducted. Second, a conceptual framework of firms' process innovation capability is developed to synthesize the literature and to advance knowledge about managing process innovation. A principal distinction between a firm's potential and realized process innovation capability is drawn, and it is argued that high-quality realization mechanisms are critical for achieving desired process innovation outcomes. Finally, implications for theory, management practice, and recommendations for future research are provided.

  • 10.
    Frishammar, Johan
    et al.
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Innovation och Design.
    Lichtenthaler, Ulrich
    University of Mannheim.
    Kurkkio, Monika
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Industriell Ekonomi.
    The front end in non-assembled product development: a multiple case study of mineral- and metal firms2012Ingår i: Journal of engineering and technology management, ISSN 0923-4748, E-ISSN 1879-1719, Vol. 29, nr 4, s. 468-488Artikel i tidskrift (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    We conceptualize the front end in non-assembled product development to be iterative and experiment-based, consisting of three sub-phases: informal start-up, formal idea-study, and formal pre-study. Although some key activities are shared with the front end activities in assembled product development, literature reviews, anticipating requirements of customers’ production processes, analysis of raw materials, anticipation of scale-up problems, and tests in bench-, pilot plant-, and full scale production represent unique activities. In addition, product concepts were frequently developed in parallel, requiring specification of physical, chemical and structural properties. These findings have implications for increasing the success and quality of front end efforts

  • 11.
    Kurkkio, Monika
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Industriell Ekonomi.
    Managing the fuzzy front-end: insights from process firms2011Ingår i: European Journal of Innovation Management, ISSN 1460-1060, E-ISSN 1758-7115, Vol. 14, nr 2, s. 252-269Artikel i tidskrift (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    Purpose – The aim of this paper is to inform researchers and practitioners about the fuzzy front-end (FFE) of the innovation process in process firms. Design/methodology/approach – A multiple case study of four process firms was conducted, with a total of 64 semi-structured interviews. Findings – The paper gives new insights into the FFE in non-assembled product and process development in process firms. The FFE of non-assembled product and process development is first conceptualized and key activities are identified. Further, how the strong relationship between product and process development can be managed in the FFE is discussed. Research limitations/implications – All four firms are from the mineral and metals industry, prompting caution when generalizing the results to other contexts. This research offers insights about the FFE in process firms. Theoretical implications are added to the existing literature on the FFE and general process development literature, and the paper increases our understanding of innovation management in general. Practical implications – From a practical point of view, the paper gives advice on how managers in process firms can increase speed and clarity in the FFE. The conceptualizations and the identified front-end key activities are suggested as checklists for improving the FFE stage. Originality/value – This study compares how the FFE within two different types of innovations is conceptualized and managed. Thus, the FFE in non-assembled product and process development is explored. The FFE of process development is an unexplored context.

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  • 12.
    Kurkkio, Monika
    et al.
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Industriell Ekonomi.
    Frishammar, Johan
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Innovation och Design.
    Lichtenthaler, Ulrich
    University of Mannheim.
    Where process development begins: a multiple case study of fuzzy front-end activities in process firms2011Ingår i: Technovation, ISSN 0166-4972, E-ISSN 1879-2383, Vol. 31, nr 9, s. 490-504Artikel i tidskrift (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    The fuzzy front end stage is known to be critical to overall product development success, but few if any studies have examined the front end in process development. By means of a multiple case study of process firms, this article aims to bridge this knowledge gap. Our results show that substantial differences in front end activities exist between the product development and process development domains. We conceptualize the front end in process development to be an iterative trial-and-error process, dominated by activities such as idea generation and refinement, literature reviews, anticipation of end-product changes, and various forms of experiments in bench scale, lab scale, and full-scale production. In addition, we highlight key problems in the FFE process, and managerial remedies for how to mitigate them. While these findings provide theoretical implications for research into product development, process development and production management, the findings are particularly relevant to process development managers, plant managers, and development engineers interested in increasing the efficiency of production processes.

  • 13.
    Kurkkio, Monika
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Industriell Ekonomi.
    Managing the fuzzy front end of product and process development: case studies of process firms2010Doktorsavhandling, sammanläggning (Övrigt vetenskapligt)
    Abstract [sv]

    Avhandlingen innefattar olika aspekter vid ledning och organisering av produkt- och processutveckling. Två forskningsprojekt har genomförts, båda inom process industrin. Det första behandlar styrning av produkt och processutvecklingsprojekt, som bedrevs i samarbete med externa parter. Det andra forskningsprojektet fokuserar på ledning och organisering av den tidiga fasen vid produkt- och processutveckling. Avhandlingen är en sammanläggningsavhandling och innefattar således en inledande text och fem artiklar. Det övergripande syftet med avhandlingen är att öka vår förståelse för hur processindustriföretag kan förbättra styrningen av produkt- och processutvecklingsprojekt, med särskilt fokus på den tidiga fasen. Bakgrunden till det första forskningsprojektet var svårigheten att styra produkt- och processutvecklingsprojekt som bedrivs i samarbete med externa parter. Få akademiska studier har undersökt vilken typ av styrning som används för att styra dessa projekt. Merparten av avhandlingen fokuserar på ledning och organisering av den tidiga fasen vid utveckling av nya eller förbättrade produkter och processer. Tidigare forskning har visat att denna fas är den mest kritiska i hela innovationsprocessen, eftersom en stor del av kvaliteten på nya produkter och processer bestäms där. Till exempel kan ett väldefinierat produktkoncept öka hastigheten i innovationsprocessen som i sin tur även leder till minskade kostnader. Detta eftersom kostnaderna för att genomföra förändringar i den tidiga fasen är relativt låga jämfört med att genomföra förändringar i senare skeden av processen. Den tidiga fasen är dock svår att leda eftersom den ofta kännetecknas av en hög grad av osäkerhet, ett osystematiskt beslutsfattande, motstridiga organisatoriska målsättningar. Dessa bidrar till att göra den tidiga fasen svår att planera och genomföra. Den befintliga forskningen om tidiga faser i innovationsprocessen har främst fokuserat på produktutveckling och lite är känt om hur man hanterar den tidiga fasen i andra sammanhang som t.ex. vid utveckling av företagets produktionsprocess. Avhandlingen syftar till att belysa ledning och organisering av den tidiga fasen vid utveckling av icke-sammansatta produkter, som t.ex. metall och stål, samt utveckling av företagens produktionsprocesser. En fallstudieansats har använts i båda forskningsprojekten.Det första forskningsprojektet i avhandlingen (artikel I) visar att företag använder sig av både formella och informella kontrollmekanismer när de leder inter-organisatoriska samarbetsprojekt. Ett centralt bidrag i detta projekt är att visa hur företagens motiv påverkar valet av kontrollmekanismer. Till exempel ekonomiskt kortsiktiga motiv (såsom att dela utvecklingskostnader) var oftast styrda genom formella kontrollmekanismer. Ifall målet var av mer långsiktig karaktär (som t.ex. att skapa och bygga relationer till sina kunder) användes informella kontrollmekanismer för att styra samarbetsprojektet.De viktigaste resultaten från det andra forskningsprojektet (artiklarna II-V) var att den tidiga fasen vid utveckling av icke-sammansatta produkter och processer har beskrivits. De två faserna har beskrivits på en relativt detaljerad nivå ett antal olika delfaser och nyckelaktiviteter har identifierats. Att beskriva vad som händer i den allra tidigaste fasen när man utvecklar produkter och processer var ett första viktigt steg för att kunna förstå hur företag kan bli bättre på att leda och organisera dessa tidiga faser i innovationsprocessen. Vidare så har flera svårigheter och problem identifierats i tidig fas vid utveckling av både produkter och processer. Flertalet av dessa skulle kunna minskas ifall företag tillämpade en mer systematisk process och tillämpade några formella kontrollmekanismer. Avhandlingen bidrar till det växande teoretiska intresse som finns för den tidiga fasen av innovationsprocessen genom att presentera vad som sker i den tidiga fasen vid utveckling av icke-sammansatta produkter och processer.

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  • 14.
    Kurkkio, Monika
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Industriell Ekonomi.
    Control mechanisms in collaborative R&D projects: the case of supplier and customer relationships in process industry2009Ingår i: International Journal of Technology Intelligence and Planning (IJTIP), ISSN 1740-2832, E-ISSN 1740-2840, Vol. 5, nr 1, s. 73-89Artikel i tidskrift (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    Collaborative R&D projects are often associated with high degrees of complexity and uncertainty therefore they are difficult to manage. The purpose of this paper is to identify and analyse which motives collaborating companies have to participate in inter-organisational R&D projects, and how these motives affect the selection of control mechanisms. Empirically, the paper draws on two case studies of joint R&D projects. Findings indicate that companies have a variety of motives which subsequently guides the mix of formal and informal control mechanisms. The paper adds to the literature on collaborative R&D projects and gives managerial advice.

  • 15.
    Kurkkio, Monika
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Industriell Ekonomi.
    Inter-organizational control mechanisms in joint R&D projects: the case of supplier and customer relationships in process industry2008Konferensbidrag (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    Collaborative R&D projects are often associated with high degrees of complexity and uncertainty and consequently they are difficult to manage. The purpose of this article is to identify and analyse which motives collaborating companies have when engaging in inter-organizational R&D projects, and how these motives subsequently affect the selection of control mechanisms. Empirically, the paper draws on two case studies of joint R&D projects in the process industry. Findings indicate that companies have two main motives to engage in joint R&D projects. If the primary motive was financial, e.g. to reduce costs, formal control mechanisms such as contractual obligations and formal planning were preferred before informal ones. If, on the other hand, relational motives such as building long-term relations were the primary aim, a different logic applied. Under such conditions, informal control mechanisms tended to be used (e.g. trust and joint decision-making). The paper adds to the growing body of literature on collaborative R&D projects and gives management advice on how to manage joint R&D projects.

  • 16.
    Kurkkio, Monika
    et al.
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Industriell Ekonomi.
    Johansson, Jeaneth
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Industriell Ekonomi.
    Management and evaluations of collaborative R&D-projects: the paradox of long-term relationships2007Ingår i: The Future of Nordic Business Schools: 19th Nordic Academy of Management Conference, 2007Konferensbidrag (Refereegranskat)
    Abstract [en]

    To be in the frontier in highly competitive and capital intensive businesses collaborative R&D-projects between companies and their customers have become important. Such projects expect to bring forth competitive advantages. However, previous studies indicate that there are difficulties in managing and evaluating collaborative R&D-projects. Therefore, the purpose with the paper is to increase the understanding about management and evaluations of values in collaborative R&D-projects. The present paper addresses the following questions: 1. How are collaborative R&D-projects managed? 2. What values are generated through the exchange between the companies? 3. How are collaborative R&D-projects evaluated? In this paper, we have conducted an exploratory single case study in the process industry, on a big Swedish company and one of their customers. The empirical findings are based on interviews, internal documents and publicly available information. Inductive patterns identified in the empirical material led to further analyses from the theoretical perspectives of Customer relationship management (CRM), Social exchange theory (SET) and Intellectual capital (IC).Findings from the study indicate that the company's strategy for creating competitive advantages is to build up-on long-term customer relationships through the collaborative R&D-projects. Management of, exchange of and values created through relationship are central for such a strategy. The careful management of customers is in accordance with the theory of CRM. The company's focus on long-term relationships tended to influence the exchange in the R&D-project. T he outcome of the project was negative, a failure. When evaluating the project focus was on measuring soft values instead of the hard values based on the negative output. The social exchange, central for the company's management of the customer relationship that generated values in form of a relational capital, seemed more important than the economic exchange. The concluding remarks of this paper lead to a paradox. Companies' long-term strategy of building relational capital for ensuring economic values tends to result in the neglecting of measuring hard economic values. This may in the long-run damage the customer relationship since the main purpose with the collaborative R&D-project is to generate competitive advantages in terms of economic values.

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  • 17.
    Kurkkio, Monika
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Industriell Ekonomi.
    Styrning i ett tvärfunktionellt FoU-projekt2006Licentiatavhandling, sammanläggning (Övrigt vetenskapligt)
    Abstract [sv]

    Denna uppsats fokuserar på styrning i tvärfunktionella FoU-projekt. Det har blivit allt vanligare med tvärfunktionella projektgrupper i dagens FoU- projekt. En anledning är att dessa projektgrupper förväntas bl a förkorta utvecklingstiderna och på så sätt bidra till effektivare och konkurrenskraftigare FoU-projekt. I projektstyrningslitteraturen framstår det som särskilt svårt att styra tvärfunktionella FoU-projekt då de ofta omfattas av stor osäkerhet och är komplexa i många hänseenden. Styrningen i denna uppsats utgår från två perspektiv; ett vertikalt och ett horisontellt perspektiv. Den tidiga projektstyrningslitteraturen har främst haft ett vertikalt perspektiv på styrning, men en senare trend i litteraturen föreslår istället ett horisontellt perspektiv på styrning. I denna uppsats har det dock argumenterats för att det krävs både vertikal och horisontell styrning i tvärfunktionella FoU-projekt. Uppsatsens övergripande syfte är att skapa en fördjupad förståelse för styrning i tvärfunktionella FoU- projekt. Syftet har preciserats genom två forskningsfrågor, nämligen: Hur kan en styrmix med vertikala och horisontella inslag se ut i ett tvärfunktionellt FoU-projekt? Vilka mekanismer ligger till grund för styrmixens utformning i ett tvärfunktionellt FoU-projekt? Studien baserades på en fallstudieansats och en förstudie samt en huvudstudie har genomförts. Syftet med förstudien var att begränsa forskningsområdet och att identifiera forskningsfrågor som även hade praktisk relevans. Huvudstudien bestod av ett tvärfunktionellt FoU-projekt som bedrevs i samarbete mellan LKAB och en av deras kunder. Det empiriska materialet samlades främst in genom personliga intervjuer med projektdeltagarna men det inkluderar även olika projektrapporter. Resultaten av denna studie tyder på att styrmixen i tvärfunktionella FoU- projekt utformas dels för att hantera beroendeförhållanden och dels för att reducera de olika dimensionerna av osäkerhet som kan finnas i projektet. Ett annat resultat av studien indikerar att horisontell styrning utgör grunden för styrmixen i tvärfunktionella FoU-projekt, men det krävdes även samordning genom det vertikala perspektivet. Den mekanism som verkade ha störst inflytande på styrmixens utformning, i ett tvärfunktionellt FoU- projekt som genomfördes tillsammans med en kund, var dock viljan att bevara den goda relationen mellan företagen.

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  • 18.
    Kurkkio, Monika
    Luleå tekniska universitet, Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle, Industriell Ekonomi.
    Styrning av tvärprofessionellt organiserade forsknings- och utvecklingsprojekt: krävs det en särskild styrning av dessa projekt?2005Ingår i: NFF 2005: The 18th Scandinavian Academy of Management Meeting, Aarhus: Aarhus School of Business , 2005Konferensbidrag (Refereegranskat)
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