Collaborative Strategies for Robust Governance in Turbulent Times

Project manager: Janne Paulsen Breimo, Nord University
CEDIT Researchers involved: Jarle Trondal and Leif Skiftenes Flak
Partners: Nord University, Nordlandsforskning, University of Berkely, Roskilde University, University of Agder.
Funded by Norwegian Research Council, SAMRISK call
Project period: August 2021- June 2024

What public services should be digitalised? Citizens’ and public organisations’ perspectives on digital welfare services in Scandinavia

Project manager: Sara Hofman (on leave), Øystein Sæbø (acting PM)
Partners: ITU, Linköping University, University of Oslo
Funded by: HELSEVEL, Norwegian Research Council
Project period: August 2021 – February 2025
Project website

Hvilke tjenester bør digitaliseres og hvordan

English: Which services should be digitalized and how

Project manager: Sara Hofman (on leave), Øystein Sæbø (acting PM)
Partners: ITU, Linköping University, University of Oslo
Funded by NAV R&D Funds (Norwegian Labour and Welfare Administration)
Project period: April 2021 – March 2024
Project website

AI4Users- Responsible Use of Artificial Intelligence through Design for Accountability and Intelligibility

Project manager: Polyxeni Vasilakopoulou
CEDIT members involved: Margunn Annestad and Maung Sein. 
Partners: NTNU and University of Oslo
Funded by: IKT+, Norwegian Research Council
Project period: November 2020- October 2024
Project website

Læringsløyper: Skoleutvikling i kommuner med etablert 1:1 dekning.

Eng: Learning Tracks. School development in municipalities with established 1:1 coverage

Project manager: Ivar Berg, Asker municipality. 
Research partners: Cathrine Tømte, CEDIT, UIA, Frida Vennerød-Diesen, NIFU and Markus Bugge, TIK, UiO. 
Funded by: Norwegian Research Council, Innovation in the public sector call. 
Project period: 15.08.2020-15.08.2023
Project website

Virtual Open Innovation Lab

Coordinator: University of Muenster. Consortium: Universidade Do Minho, Hochschule Rheinmain, Kauno Technologijos Universitetas, Universidad De La Iglesia De Deusto Entidad Religiosa, Institute Of Entrepreneurship Development, Universitaet Graz, Cotec Portugal Associacao, Empresarial Para A Inovacao.
Funded by Erasmus+, Horizon2020.
Project period: November 2019-November 2021. 

The project VOIL – Virtual Open Innovation Lab has two strategic objectives: 

(1) to raise awareness about the potential of emerging technologies for the digital transformation of micro, small & medium businesses,
(2) to design a pedagogical model for simulation-based learning of advanced digital competencies.
UIA Project manager: Niels Garmann-Johnsen

Workshop series: Understanding digital transformation of teaching and learning in Nordic higher education: innovations, mediations and context

Funding: The Joint Committee for Nordic research councils in the Humanities and Social Sciences (NOS-HS)
Project manager: Cathrine Tømte. Co-leader: Vito Laterza.
Partners: Aarhus University, KTH Royal Institute of Technology.
Project period: January 2020-December 2021.

Our workshop series will produce policy-relevant academic knowledge about processes, opportunities and challenges of digital transformation of teaching and learning in Nordic higher education. Our overarching questions are: what kinds of transformations occur as a result of digitalisation of teaching &learning in Nordic higher education? How do we make sense of them within and beyond the classroom – e.g. effects on policies and practices in organisational, governance and technology domains linked to higher education teaching &learning? What theories, methods and empirical cases can successfully tackle these questions?

Från blankett till robot? Om automatiserad ärendehantering i svenska kommuner

Funding: AFA Försäkring.
Project manager: Linköping universitet.
Project period: 2020-2022.
Member of Advisory board: Leif Skiftenes Flak.

Profesjonsfaglig digital kompetanse for studenter og lærerutdannere i grunnskolelærerutdanningene (ProDIG) 2018-2020

Professional digital competence for students and educators in primary school education.
Project owner: University of Agder
Funded by: Norwegian Ministry of Education and Research and Norgesuniversitetet.

Felles telemedisinsk løsning på Agder (Telma) 2016-2018

Telma is a joint telemedical solution for the region of Agder in Norway. The ambition is to establish a joint solution for all 30 municipalities in Agder county.  6 partners: Kristiansand, Farsund and Risør municipalities, South Norway Hospital (SSHF), Siemens HealthCare and Centre for ehealth at University of Agder.
Project owner: Kristiansand municipality.
Funded by the Norwegian Research council.

GOV3.0: Scientific Foundations Training & Entrepreneurship Activities in the Domain of ICT-enabled Governance

The Gov 3.0 project aims at establishing ICT-enabled Governance as a vivid research domain, by providing universities, private firms and government agencies with cutting-edge knowledge on emerging technologies and policy support methods and tools. The core consortium will engage a network of affiliate partners and experts from all over the world.
Funded by Erasmus+ Programme of the European Union.

Phd Project: Introducing programming and computational thinking into the common core curriculum for primary and secondary schools in Norway

PhD Fellow Kristine Sevik, Information systems

Programming and computational thinking (CT) became part of the mandatory education in Norway from August 2020 with the introduction of the new national curriculum. The research project aims to investigate the introduction of CT and programming from the micro, meso and macro level of education by collecting data from teachers and school leaders, local government and review of national policies.

PhD Project: The Impact of Digitalisation on Urban Planning: A Case Study of the Networks of Citizen Participation in Transport Planning in Southern Norway.

PhD Fellow Alhassan  Yakubu Alhassan

Urbanisation and digital transformations are two essential features of the 21st Century. Amid accelerated urbanisation over the past decade, there has been rapid digitalisation of everyday life. Given the increasing urban population and the growing prevalence of digital technologies in society, the question about the role of digitalisation in driving urban planning is particularly important and timely. This research aims to examine the impact of digitalisation on the citizen participation and the networks of actors in urban transport planning process.

PhD Project: Mothering, migration and digital media

PhD Fellow Heidi Esma Dahl Bønnhoff

I am doing a PhD project in sociology and social work. The broader topic is how living in an increasingly digitalized society effects the everyday lives of citizens. I’ve chosen to focus on the intersection between mothering, migration and digital media, by viewing the digitalized welfare services from the standpoint of 16 migrant mothers. The thesis especially highlights the mother’s relations to the child care sector and NAV. The basic hypothesis is that mothering in a digitalized society implies a lot of tacit knowledge both about mothering itself and how to navigate in digitalized institutional complexes. This tacit knowledge can be unknown or challenging to obtain for migrant mothers from less digitalized societies. Methodologically, I’ve been inspired by institutional ethnography to explore the mother’s social relations and how macro-institutional politics are organizing and coordinating their everyday lives.

Supervisors: Professor Anne Marie Støkken, dosent Carl Erik Moe and Associate professor May-Linda Magnussen

PhD Project: Deconstructing Welfare Technology Programs: Outcome Evaluation From Two Case-Studies

PhD Fellow Gloria Ziglioli, Sociology and Social Work

The subject-matter of this research project is the adoption of information and communication technology in long-term care practices (LTC )- for elderly users with chronic conditions; whose trademarks of continuity, multidimensionality and temporal extension imply a broad and complex reflection also on the matter of welfare state development, in the light of the contemporary economic and social crisis.

Supervisor: Professor Alexander Ruser

PhD Project: The role of information systems in international governance: The case of the Paris Agreement

PhD Fellow Tove Sofia Engvall
Information systems

Toves PhD project is about digitalization and the role of information systems in international governance. She will use the reporting to the United Nations Framework Convention of Climate Change (UNFCCC) as a case. All countries should report on their commitments and achievements, as well as greenhouse gas emissions to the UNFCCC. The idea is that this will enable transparency, assessment of individual and collective action, inspire political engagement and participation. In this way, both the information and system have central roles in governance. The research will explore the relationship between information, technology and governance, to develop a deeper understanding of the role of information systems in a complex context of international governance.

Tove is a PhD fellow in Information Systems, at the Center for Digital Transformation. She has worked as a lecturer in archives and information science, and participated in research projects in this field, at Mid Sweden University. One project was about records management and life cycle economy in the Swedish Transport Administration. She has also participated in the international research project about trust in records in an online networked context, InterPARES Trust. Before this, Tove worked as an e-archivist in a Swedish municipality, and also participated in national projects about e-archives. She has a commitment to issues about sustainable development, and has been involved in the NGO-sector, especially regarding global sustainability issues.

Supervisors: Professor Leif Skiftenes Flak and professor Jarle Trondal

PhD Project: Infectious Ideas – Ideational Power in Artificial Intelligence Policy Development

PhD Fellow Frans af Malmborg
Political Science


The ongoing PhD project aims to answer three questions;
  1. How is public policy on Artificial Intelligence (AI) overall being framed by governments?
  2. Are there differences or similarities in AI framing across European nations?
  3. To what extent is it possible to observe ideational integration and/or differentiation across national governments in relation to international policy organizations such as the OECD, the EU or the UN?

Main supervisor:Professor Jarle Trondal
Co-supervisor: Professor Leif Skiftenes Flak

PhD Project: Public organizations and their ability to cope with changes

PhD Fellow Frank Danielsen. Information systems

I am a PhD research fellow in Information Systems and my research area is Digital Government. I study digital transformation initiatives in public organizations and how digitalization will affect the organizations and their capabilities. I find it interesting how organizations can prepare for digitalization initiatives and how digital solutions can contribute or enable organizations to handle oncoming challenges that might require radical changes. To achieve an understanding of this, I am conducting a case study on public organizations experiencing digital transformation. To collect empirical data, a qualitative method is chosen. This consist of interviews, document analyses and observation techniques. My supervisors at the University of Agder are Professor Øystein Sæbø and Professor Leif Skiftenes Flak.

PhD Project: Digitalization of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Germany – (Simply) a matter of governance?

PhD Fellow Christopher Köhler, Zeppelin University, Germany Sociology

Abstract: What is „good“ governance? This question is as old as the original roots of the concept of governance that lie in ancient greek. Still, in times where political and economic changes, crisis and revolutions challenge countries, enterprises, people in many countries governance by various actors seems to face renaissance. This also proves to be true in the context of the digital revolution. Therefore, various governments all over the world implement respective policies to (try to) enable their society to be on the winning rather than the losing side. One such example is Germany. Traditionally the German “Mittelstand” is described as to be the backbone of economy. Even more important for the economy though – in scale and size – are small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) which make up more than 99 percent of all enterprises in Germany. Problematically, digitalization has been proven to be quite challenging. This is particularly true for small and medium-sized firms as these organizations face many disadvantages (e.g. lack of expertise and financial autonomy) in comparison to big companies. In line with resource-dependence theory (RDT) especially such enterprises are contingent on external resources to generate profit and/or outperform competitors. In this respect, the thesis with the working title “Digitalization of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Germany – (Simply) a matter of governance?“ analyses the (digital) governance-mechanisms and policy instruments national and subnational governments implement to support german SMEs concerning the digital challenge. Therefore, the author utilizes the interdisciplinary concept of governance to synthesize theories of political science (e.g. theory of public goods) and economics (market-based (MBV) and resource-based view (RBV) and RDT) to evaluate how potential policy implementation failures may be obviated (in the future) and which already implemented governance-mechanisms (hierarchy, market and/or networks) are suited (best) to support diverse german SMEs concerning (internal) digitalization. Therefore, the work draws on qualitative (e.g. content analysis) as well as quantitative methods (e.g. text mining, cluster analysis and various regression models) to guarantee methodological triangulation.


  • Determinants (various) of democratic (in-)stability
  • Governance (theories): Policy cycle/stages (politics, policies, policy outcomes), transaction cost theory, market-based view, resource-based view, resource-dependence theory

Analysis and Methods Survey research, descriptive statistics, qualitative and quantitative text/content analysis, cluster analysis, regression models (various) Software STATA, R, MPLUS, MAXQDA, LATEX

Supervisor:Professor Alexander Ruser.

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