Call for papers – English

The NEON conference is a forum for discussion, cooperation, exchange of ideas and sharing of research results. Researchers and practitioners will here convene on topics as organization, organizing, management, strategy, change and innovation.

The organizer will invite on the conference of this year to reflection and dialogue on relationships of innovation and organizational research. What can research on innovation contribute to research on organizations? Moreover, and what is the contribution of research on organizations to the field of innovation? What are the implications of increased focus on innovation in the research policy and organizational studies? What inhibit and further innovation? How can we grasp the role of actors in innovation processes? What is the role of structure and culture – and what is the significance of management? How can we understand implementation and diffusion of innovation in and between organizations? What are the implications and consequences? Is innovation always favourable, and to whom? How do we obtain innovation that is sustainable in democratic and ethical terms?

The organizer wish paper proposals to following tracks/topics:

Session 1. Leadership, agency and values work in organizations: Institutional perspectives

Public, private and civic organizations face challenges, requiring adaption and innovation, regarding institutionalized practices, patterns of interaction and competencies. Even though challenges and perceived changes are cannot be controlled, agency and space for choice of action are critical for a nuanced analysis and understanding of change and innovation processes.

During last decade, within institutional theory new  perspectives emerged that underscore agency as a crucial aspect of institutional change or in interpretation of and translating emerging trends, challenges and opportunity. The Scandinavian institutionalism utilized the concept of translation supplementing neo-institutional theory  (Brunsson & Sahlin-Andersson, 2000; Sahlin-Andersson, 1996), more recently terms like negotiation, hybridization, ambidexterity and contestation is applied in analyzing organizational reactions to competing institutional logics. Due to this, the need to re-focus on work and intentional practice facing changes is argued by central authors (Barley & Kunda, 2001; Lawrence & Suddaby, 2006). Institutional work prompted effort for identifying new forms of organizational and institutional work (Brown & Toyoki, 2013; Gehman, Trevino, & Garud, 2013; Kraatz, 2009; Phillips & Lawrence, 2012). Central to these efforts, values is a key term, as it seem to be tied to the core of institutional theory.

This stream invites differing contributions that thematize establishing, maintaining and chaning institutions, with a particular interest in the issue of valus. Such contributions can underscore «agency/embedded agency» (Battilana & D’Aunno, 2009), institutional logics (Thornton & Ocasio, 2008) or form of institutional work (such as translation work, values work, identity work, emotional work etc) as analytical framework.

Type of session: Paper based with response and roundtable discussion/in-put


Barley, S. R., & Kunda, G. (2001). Bringing work back in. Organization science, 12(1), 76-95.

Battilana, J., & D’Aunno, T. (2009). Institutional work and the paradox of embedded agency. In T. b. Lawrence, R. Suddaby, & B. Leca (Eds.), Institutional work: actors and agency in institutional studies of organizations (pp. 31-58). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Brown, A. D., & Toyoki, S. (2013). Identity work and legitimacy. Organization Studies, 0170840612467158.

Brunsson, N., & Sahlin-Andersson, K. (2000). Constructing organizations: The example of public sector reform. Organization studies, 21(4), 721-746.

Gehman, J., Trevino, L. K., & Garud, R. (2013). Values work: A process study of the emergence and performance of organizational values practices. Academy of Management Journal, 56(1), 84-112.

Kraatz, M. S. (2009). Leadership as institutional work: A bridge to the other side. Institutional work: Actors and agency in institutional studies of organizations, 59-91.

Lawrence, T., & Suddaby, R. (2006). Institutions and institutional work. In S. R. Clegg, C. Hardy, T. Lawrence, & W. R. Nord (Eds.), The SAGE handbook of organization studies (2nd ed., pp. 215-254). London: SAGE.

Phillips, N., & Lawrence, T. B. (2012). The turn to work in organization and management theory: Some implications for strategic organization. Strategic Organization, 10(3), 223.

Sahlin-Andersson, K. (1996). Imitating by editing success. The construction of organizational fields and identities.

Thornton, P. H., & Ocasio, W. (2008). Institutional logics. The Sage handbook of organizational institutionalism, 840, 99-128.


Session Chair: Professor Harald Askeland, VID Vitenskapelig høyskole. E-mail:

Session 2. Co-working in the new working life – arena for studies of organizing, management, innovation and sustainability

In the «new working life” it is to an increasing extent emerging new forms of organizing work and places of work.  Examples are free-lancing, flexible connections and digital nomads. Co-working space, co-location, regardless of the name, these solutions have increased spread and popularity during the last ten years in Norway as well as abroad (Gandini, 2015, Andersen and Hoff, 2016). The “new working life” relates to the emergence of sharing economy, and there is need for new and sustainable solutions to economic, environmental and social challenges. A growing co-working movement attempts to distinguish between pure commercial markets for renting co-working space (infrastructure co-working space (Ivaldi et al., 2018), and the genuine values of co-working that deals with collaboration rather than competition, openness, sharing, diversity and innovation (network coworking spaces, Ivaldi et al., 2018, p. 228). The potentials of co-working space is rooted in close relationships, high degree of trust, short lines of communications, and physical facilities arranging for and stimulating social interaction (Ivaldi et al., 2018). An applied framework for studying co-working is the interplay between the physical spaces, community and facilitated social environment (physical space-community- facilitated social environment, Fuzi, 2016).

In some co-workings there are a leader facilitating interaction among the members (Spreitzer et al., 2015). However, more typical is never the less that the interaction among the tenants is self-generated, and the collaboration and innovations that potentially will blossom is more spontaneous (Capdevila, 2013, Ivaldi et al., 2018). The question on the significance of top-down/bottom-up for arranging for and facilitating cooperation is a key issue in this field.

The urban co-working concept has also the last ten years been taking in rural areas of Norway. As the research literature in general most frequently deals with co-working spaces in major cities in Europe and the USA (Fuzi, 2016), research is lacking on how such environments function on smaller places. Moreover, there is limited research with in particular on a focus on the deliberate and planned facilitated processes that can take place in co-working spaces (Liimatainen, 2016, p.115).  There is a growing interest for co-working and ongoing research in Norway and the Nordic countries; however, researchers have published up to now little. No researchers have addressed how people actively build in network effects through planned, conscious processes on development and operation of co-working spaces. Nor have researchers dealt with topics as sustainability (Rubach, 2018).

The field of co-working invites to studies with various theoretical approaches. In the present session, we want conceptual and empirical contributions that identify paradoxes and dilemmas enterprises and co-working leaders will face in their work. For example, strategy, innovation, governance and leadership, together with contributions that suggest how leaders handle this.

Examples of topics are how does the concept of co-working challenge the understanding of organization? Old wine in new bottles?

Tensions between collaboration based on innovations and develop new skills on the one hand, and the considerations of own profitability, efficiency and performance on the other.

What does co-working management imply? How to facilitate processes of independent participants in an organization?

Which synergies arise and how? Which conditions facilitate innovation?

What does diversity mean for innovation? What does the stages represent to enterprises?

What should the researcher focus on in terms of offers to diverse branches, different size and maturity, types of business models, values, and attitudes and so on?

What has the leader to emphasize when choosing who will rent in different co-workings?

What is a rural co-working?

How to develop sustainable co-workings based on networks? (A sustainable business strategy implies a strategy that management integrate the principles of sustainability into the business strategy of the organization. These principles include a long-term perspective, and a broader view on value creation. Moreover, as well as realizing ecological limits and social commitments).


Andersen, T. & Hoff, E.  (2016). Bedre sammen? Samlokaliseringer som virkemiddel for utvikling av kulturelle næringer. (Kunnskapsverket notat nr. 06-2016). Lillehammer: Kunnskapsverket

Capdevila, I., 2013. Knowledge dynamics in localized communities: Coworking spaces as micro clusters. Available at SSRN 2414121.

Fuzi, A., 2016. Space for creative and entrepreneurial activities? Coworking spaces in the entrepreneurial landscape of an economically challenged region. (PhD thesis). Cardiff:  Cardiff Metropolitan University

Gandini, A., 2015. The rise of coworking spaces: A literature review*. Ephemera, 15(1), 193.

Ivaldi S., Pais I., Scaratti G., 2018. Coworking(s) in the Plural: Coworking Spaces and New Ways of Managing. In: Taylor S., Luckman S. (Eds) The New Normal of Working Lives. Dynamics of Virtual Work. Palgrave Macmillan, Cham

Liimatainen, K., 2015 Supporting Inter-Organizational Collaboration in Coworking Clusters: The Role of Place, Community and Coordination. Master thesis. Espoo: Aalto University

Rubach, S., 2018. KlyngECOworking – samlokalisering med klyngeeffekter. Østfoldforskning. OR.09.18.

Type of session. The session is open for research papers and practical cases. Since this is a relative new field of research, it might be all right to open for practical experiences, together with Master Students with relevant thematics.

The purpose of session is to build network between research and practice within the field, to develop new national (and international) research projects, and in the end to publish a book on the management of co-working.


Session Chairs. Synnøve Rubach (Østfoldforskning), Gunnar Andersson (Høgskolen i Østfold), Torhild Andersen (Østlandsforskning).

Session 3. Against innovation

Theme: During the last few decades, «Innovation» has become, like «entrepreneurship», become one of the panaceas of our time. In most cases, the discourse is entirely positive towards these concepts – it is as if «innovation» (as well as «entrepreneurship») per se is something indisputably good. On this backdrop, we think the time is ripe to explore the darker sides of and negative consequences from «innovation» (and «entrepreneurship»). We welcome especially contributions that explicitly argue against «innovation» (and/or «entrepreneurship») – as concepts, phenomena or discourses.

Type of session: Paper based presentations (papers should preferably be circulated in advance of the conference; papers in English or any Scandinavian language are equally welcome). Nevertheless, contributions to the debate that do not rest on any paper are also welcome.

Publishing: There is already a proposal for a book (in English) on this theme (Ed.: Anders Örtenblad), in which there may be space for one or a few new contributions. In case there is a huge interest in this session, then we would definitely consider putting together another anthology, in English or Norwegian, containing papers submitted to this session.

Session chairs: Anders Örtenblad, Professor of Organization and Leadership:; Jill Beth Otterlei, Associate Professor:

Session 4. Organizational didactics/Teaching the organization

“Teaching in organization and management” has several times been a topic on the NEON conference (2006, 2008, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2016). The session chairs invites to this parallel session as well at Lillehammer 2018. We welcome papers and other forms of professional input under the broad approach of “Subject didactics for organizations”.

Type of session. This is a paper session. The contributions might cover broadly, but the paper givers should in a basic way deal with how to pass on insights into the subject area of organization and management. The presentation can deal with conveying established concepts and ways of thinking. Moreover, how to inform about new research on organization and management to students, practitioners and the public.

The contributions can then be about teaching various target groups, teaching texts and passing on popular science. The session is open to theoretical reflections and empirical work as well, examples of teaching programs and evaluation of teaching programs. Further, we invite to presentations that focus on pedagogical and didactical challenges in subjects of organization, or alternative procedures in handling those challenges.

Session chairs. Øyvind Glosvik, dr.polit, dosent, Høgskulen på Vestlandet, campus Sogndal/Førde,

Åge Gjøsæter, dosent, Høgskulen på Vestlandet, campus Haugesund,

Session 5. Organizing for sustainable innovation - The role of time in organization change- and innovation processes

The session chairs aim to highlight the role of time and temporality in organizing for sustainable innovation and change processes. There is a growing interest in taking time and temporality into consideration when conducting organization studies in general. Our aim is to bring a temporal perspective into innovation and organization change studies in order to take the field of innovation and organization change studies further. There are several managerial implications when integrating a temporal perspective on innovation and organization studies, such as how past, present and future are crucial in strategic re-orientation (see for example Schultzs & Hernes, 2013). Time seems also of great importance regarding commitment to radical organizational change processes (Ødegård & Branstad, in process). Further, on, when Multinational Companies locate in distant communities, the degree of temporal empathy with the hosting local community seems to influence the quality of interactions with key stakeholders (Salinas & Ødegård, in process).

Much innovation and organization change work is largely a-temporal and oriented towards the present or short-term future business horizons with no or little connection to the past, which might prevent sustainability within a long-term perspective (Slawinski & Bansal, 2012). Sustainable solutions seems to require a more long-term time horizons.

Present research on innovation takes only limited account of temporality, viewing innovation processes as an exclusively forward looking process, where planning and timing are of essence (Christensen et al., 2015). Related to this is the question of firms’ histories and how they are brought into developmental work, and our ambition is to explain how novelty is created as firms engage with (re-)inventing the past to facilitate the emergence and institutionalization of novel practices for the future.

Session chairs

Are Brandstad, Associate Professor, University of South-Eastern Norway.

Session 6. New insights into theoretical approaches of translation in organizational theory

The theory of translation is a theoretical-empirical research tradition that frequently associates with the neo-institutional paradigm, and with strong roots to organizational research in Scandinavia. A group of researchers introduced the conception of diffusion of practice and ideas of translation to organizational theory in the nine-teen nineties (Czarniawska og Joerges 1996; Czarniawska og Sevon 1996). Ideas form French sociologist from the nineteen seventies and eighties then inspired those researchers (Serres 1974/1982; Latour 1986; 1987, Callon 1986).  After the millennium, there has appeared many contributions that researchers have based on the theory of translation (for example, Czarniawska and Sevon 2005; Røvik 2007, Sahlin and Wedlin 2008, Røvik m.fl. 2014). The researcher directs the attention to how practice and ideas diffuse in space and time between organizations and actors. Analysts keep up the translation approach as a contrast to the diffusion perspective. The latter is a model of dissemination inspired by knowledge of physical laws for movement and inertia. However, a key point in the theory of translation is the conception that ideas will spread by means of all organizations and actors add a new moment of diffusion to the ideas. Further, as organizations and actors simultaneously translate and leave their mark on the translation. The theory of translation is one of the most promising innovations in organizational theory, and is strengthened its position during the last 10-15 years far beyond Scandinavia.

Type of session. The present NEON-track will open with two brief lectures in which the purpose is to make clear recent development trends within research on the theory of translation. Then we invite to presentation and discussion of papers with a translation theoretical angle, and from various empirical areas. We want among others papers with following angles:

  • Contributions on theory development
  • Studies of diffusion of ideas and practice
  • Studies of reforms, and in particular, implementation of reforms (in all types of organizations, business, administration and associations)
  • Studies with a focus on the translators (who are they, what are they able of and what do they do?)
  • Studies with a focus on the diffusion of knowledge (in cases that someone tries to transfer practice and ideas from specific organizations to other organization)

Session chairs: Hilde Marie Pettersen, Turid Moldenæs, and Kjell Arne Røvik, University of Tromsø

Session 7. Evolution, complexity and organization

Theoretical focus

The name of Darwin usually relates to the theory of evolution, but scholars can trace the theory back to Kant and Rousseau as well. The theory of evolution has had an enormous impact on a number of subject areas from the sciences and social science to the humanities (Stichweh 2007). A fascinating characteristic of evolution is that it does not take place clearly nomological, but rather phylogenetically – combined continuity and duplication of structures. Evolution entails a combination of variety, selection and stability. Duplication and new combinations represent innovations that entail minor duplication (involution) that means that things congeal. People will face stabilization of expectations to the future as legal protection, institutionalization, technical solutions that homogenise among countries (everything from sockets to traffic codes, and much more). However, the theory of evolution unfolds that people call a paradoxical phenomenon (March 2017), surprises and researchers ascribe innovations to meaning based on these stabilizations. Conservative inertia and changes will develop at the same time, and the maintenance of society are the consequences of effects of variety, selection and stabilization.

Researchers can present complexity theory as immoderate as the theory of evolution. We venture the claim that complexity will determine the sciences in the 21th century. An evolutionary reasoning is the basis for research on complexity. Researchers talk about the morphogenesis of complexity. A consequence of selection is exactly contingence that means what is different-possible, Luhmann 2013). Biological diversity, for example, can be an essential factor in understanding diversity, not only biological, but also in social systems. Research on complexity brings in this way together reasoning which derive from different scientific disciplines as complex nuclear, molecular and cellular systems in nature to complex social and economic systems in society. A main problem in the research on complexity is therefore to look closer at the interaction among different elements in a complex system (molecules in materials, cells in organisms or human beings in markets and organizations). Moreover, how these elements manage to establish order and structure, but also produce chaos and collapse. Researchers can relate a number of key problems to the problematic of complexity; global climate challenges and investigators analyse earthquakes and tsunamis in advanced computers models. Within Nano – technology researchers have developed new materials out of complex molecular structures, and in gene technology, analysed DNA-information that has let complex cellular organisms grow (Law et al 2002). The life sciences is occupied by the complexity of life, artificial life simulates complex self-organisations of life in appropriate computer models and the social sciences by decision-making that can solve problems of the common good of community (Bakken & Wiik 2013).

Organizing in this context turns out to handle this non-linear dynamics (Simon 1990; Weick 2017). Change processes have to take into account mutual and reinforced dependencies that will lead to undesirable and sometimes paradoxical effects (Braathen 2016). Complexity of the environment will reflect in the organizing. Organizations become decision-making machines as people expect raising the right questions (problems) and provide right answers (solutions). Not once and for all, but processual, as make-shift solutions that little by little demand new problem statements and solutions, as in the same way when stabilization will demand new changes.

Some possible research questions.

The session chairs want to investigate specific research questions related to the research field evolution, complexity and organization. These could be research questions with a broad scope ranging from theoretical to presenting ongoing research in articles that are more empirical. These could be

Theoretical contributions related to the thematic on evolution, complexity and organization

Empirical contributions presenting ongoing or finished research in the field

The development of teaching programs in the field

Health problematic

Changes and new potentials in health care like care, or more macro, what associate with the caring society (favourably related to phenomenological aspects as solidarity, authenticity etc.

Town development – attractive neighbourhood understood as complex ecosystems

New transformative models of value creation in contract-dependent branches, as for example building, offshore oil and gas and more

Alternatively, other projects?

Type of session. The session chairs emphasize that paper givers submit well-prepared articles, and we will go in depth with them. In addition, we will attempt to suggest potentials for further development. We aim to a possible anthology based on the submitted contributions.


Law, J. & Mol A. (red.) (2002) Complexities. Social studies of knowledge practices. Duke University Press

Luhmann, N. (2013) “Kompleksitet uten holdepunkt”, I Niklas Luhmann, Sosiologisk teori, Akademika, 237-255.

Bakken, T. & Wiik, E.L (2013) «Some thoughts on the ‘application’ of systems theory», I T. Tzaneva (red.) Nachtflug der Eule: Gedenkbuch zum 15. Todestag von Niklas Luhmann. LIDI EuropEdition. 486-499.

Stichweh, R. (2007) “Evolutionary theory and the theory of world society”, I Soziale Systeme 13. Jg. 528-542.

March, J. (2017) “Reflections on the paradoxes of modernity”, I The Oxford handbook of Organizational Paradox. Oxford University Press.

Simon, H. (1990) The sciences of the artificial. Cambridge: The MIT Press.

Weick K. E. (2017) “Evolving reactions: 60 years with March and Simon’s ‘Organizations’”. Journal of Management Studies, 1-12.

Braathen, P. (2016) “Paradox in organizations seen as social complex systems”, i Emergence: Complexity & Organization, 18 (2), 1-14.

Session chairs

Tore Bakken, Handelshøyskolen BI and Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences
Petter Braathen, University of Brussels
Werner Christie, Handelshøyskolen BI and NTNU.
Keith Peavy, Handelshøyskolen BI.

Session 8. Regional reorganization and sustainable business development

Trade and industry in Norway will face a ‘double’ challenge. Firstly, trade and industry has to become more diversified and less dependent on oil. Secondly, the industry has to ensure that the reorganization also implies a development of an environmental conscious and sustainable industry. Enterprises and business sectors in different regions will handle these challenges variously. Trade and industry will ha different conditions of reorganization and sustainable value creation. In the present session, the chairs intend to stimulate to a debate on what are significant regional drivers and mechanisms of a restructuration of trade and industry in Norway. What promotes entrepreneurship and establishment of new enterprises and business sectors? How to ensure a technological upgrading and diversification of existing industry? How can digitalization contribute to new innovative business models? How to develop a regional infrastructure that support renewal and innovation in trade and industry? Which role plays universities and colleges in the efforts for increased focus on sustainable value creation? What regional innovation policy do we needed?

Type of session. The presenters submit extended abstracts, alternatively papers, before the conference. Paper givers can write extended abstracts or papers in Norwegian or English.

We have not any specific plans for dissemination related to the session. However, we will encourage participants to develop their contributions further to journal articles.

Session chairs

Prof. Stig-Erik Jakobsen, Western Norway University of Applied Sciences,

Prof. Arne Isaksen, University of Agder,

Session 9. Organisations and organising in a Digital Era – What is happening with organisation studies?

Digitalisation, Industry 4.0, AI and Robot Process Automation are some of the how buzzwords of today and the Scandinavian countries are generally considered to be rather advanced in the digital development. Policy makers, industry leaders and politicians compete in drawing more or less utopian visions of the possible futures that new technologies may bring to societies, organisations and individuals. However, what is really new? The track organizers invites empirical or conceptual papers that addresses the challenges and possibilities that organizations face and that organizing involves in a digital era. Possible topics that may be addressed are (but are not limited to):

Theorizing digital organizations and digital organizing

New forms of organizing with digital technologies; digital leadership, digital management, digital work

Temporary vs permanent; projects vs processes in digital organizing

Type of session. This is a paper-based track where participants present their work, but we envisage that papers are shared in advance so that the track can have a workshop-form, rather than simple presentations with Q&A s in order to help participants move their papers forward.

Publication and dissemination

The track organizers plan the workshop in such a way that participants can submit their papers to a suitable journal after the conference. At the end of the conference, participants will be invited to discuss suitable forms of dissemination to a broader audience than the scientific community does.

Session chairs

Anette Hallin, Associate Professor in Organisation and Managment at Mälardalen University, Sweden,

Chris Ivory, Professor, Director of the Innovation and Management Practice research centre, Lord Ashcroft International Business School, Anglia Ruskin University, Cambridge, UK,

Christoffer Andersson, PhD-candidate at Mälardalen University, Sweden,

Anna Uhlin, PhD-candidate at Mälardalen University, Sweden,

Session 10. Inside the Brillo Box: Management and governance of innovations in cultural organisations

Management and governance of cultural organizations such as festivals, cultural centres, operas, museums, symphony orchestras, galleries, theatres and ballets – involves balancing a number of conflicting goals and demands. It is about weighing aesthetic ideals against economic yield, and about organizing unruly artists and creative processes. A number of cultural organizations rely on public funding, however not all have full funding and depend on sponsors and volunteers (e.g. Di Maggio 2006). Demands in art fields for aesthetic quality can run into conflict with economic demands from sponsors or public actors on cost-efficient operations. Public policies aimed at increasing the participation of broader audiences can influence programming, and pose challenges to aesthetic objectives and local needs.

Arts and cultural organizations have also become important resources in local and regional planning and assets in strategies to brand or position cities or places favourably in the minds of target groups (e.g, Campelo 2017, Braun et al. 2014). In addition, the number of freelance artists has increased. The growth of creative businesses and cultural entrepreneurship (Mangset and Røyseng, 2009) is an expression of such trends with tight couplings between culture and business. Crossover art forms and new curating practices have challenged established notions on what characterizes a cultural arena, and have laid the foundation for new organizational and managerial practices (e.g. Hansen, Ropo and Sauer, 2007).

Governance and management of cultural organizations deal with reducing tensions and balance different objective, demands and expectations, while management is also about stimulating interaction and synergies crosswise. Put shortly, the cultural field is a new and interesting empirical area for studying innovation, both as business enterprise and as imitative formations (Spilling 2006).

In the session, the chairs welcome papers that shed light on how cultural organizations work with innovations. We pay special attention to new practices of management and organizational solutions, business models, leadership styles, products and services. In addition, we want to problematize consequences of phenomena such as digitalization, co-creation and crowdfunding, as well as “place-branding” and other interrelationships between creativity and innovation.

Type of session. We welcome both empirical and conceptual papers that suggest various ways in which the cultural organizations’ work with management and governance of innovation. We are also interested in papers that focus on governance and management of cultural organizations at different levels (political, organizational and individual), such as papers that deal with innovation in audience reach, or relates the developments in art forms to organizing and management.

The plan is to assemble a selection of the papers from the session in a book.  Presenters have to submit an abstract to the session chairs within the deadline. Authors, who have their abstract accepted, must submit full papers to the session chairs within the deadline. We will appoint a discussant to each paper.


Braun, Erik, Eshuis, Jasper, & Klijn, Erik-Hans. (2014): The effectiveness of Place Brand Communication. Cities, 41, 64-70.

Coffee, Kevin (2008) Cultural inclusion, exclusion and the formative role of museums. Museum Management and Curating, Vol. 23, No1.

Danto, Arthur (1964): The Art World. The Journal of Philosophy,

Di Maggio (2006): Non-profit Organizations and the Intersectional Division of Labor in the Arts. In Powell, Walter and Richard Steinberg. The Non-profit sector. A research handbook. Yale University Press.

Hansen, H., Ropo, A. og Sauer, E (2007): Aesthetic leadership. The Leadership Quarterly, Vol.18, no.6.

Mangset, P. og Røyseng, S. (red.) (2009): Kulturelt entreprenørskap. Bergen: Fagbokforlaget.

Spilling, O.R (2006): Entreprenørskap på norsk. Bergen. Fagbokforlaget

Campelo, Adriana, ed. (2017): Handbook on Place Branding and Marketing. Edward Elgar Publishing

DeFillippi, Robert, Gernot Grabner and Candace Jones (2005): Introduction. Special edition: Paradoxes of Creativity: Managerial and Organizational Challenges in the Cultural Economy.” Journal of Organizational Behaviour, Vol. 28, No. 5.

Monthoux, Pierre de, Claes Gustavsson, Sven-Erik Sjöstrand (2007): Aesthetic Leadership. Palgrave Macmillan.

Session chairs
Gry Brandser, professor, Nord universitet,
Daniel Ericsson, docent, Linnéuniversitetet,
Trude Høgvold Olsen, førsteamanuensis, Handelshøgskolen UiT Norges arktiske universitet,
Elsa Solstad, professor, Handelshøgskolen UiT Norges arktiske universitet,

Session 11. Inclusive and diverse organizations – towards alternative understandings

The awareness of inequality and discrimination in society and in organizations is increasing, yet, organizations continue to be sites of inequality regimes (Acker, 2006). Diversity management has been practiced in organizations for years, and diversity management scholars have for long studied how meaning is created around diversity and how it is managed in organizations (D’Netto & Sohal, 1999; Tatli, 2011; Yang & Konrad, 2011). Despite all this, many challenges remain to grasp how diversity should be dealt with in organizations (Zanoni, Janssens, Benschop, & Nkomo, 2010). For one, as management is about control and coordination, would diversity management then mean diversity must be controlled in organizations? But, maybe the issue is phrased wrongly? However, why should diversity be managed? Maybe diversity should not be managed but approached in other ways? Maybe we need alternative ways to deal with diversity (Janssens & Zanoni, 2014)? Maybe diversity cannot be managed? Maybe diversity needs to be understood and handled in a different way but to be managed? Moreover, what could alternative approaches to diversity lead to? The questions around diversity and inclusion are manifold.

Type of session. For this track, we invite contributions to explore diversity (and its management) in organizations in new, alternative and innovative ways.

Examples of topics could be:

  • What is the performativity of diversity? How does the ways diversity is made sense of by different actors influence its translation into practices, in terms of activities and initiatives. In addition, how can different diversity activities and initiatives influence the sense making of diversity?
  • What ideas of diversity give rise to, and are promoted by, contemporary diversity/inclusion initiatives?
  • What are the effects of diversity initiatives – on the lives of the persons they target, the promoters of the initiatives, on organizations and on society, in terms of diversity, gender and power relations?
  • How are diversity/inclusion initiatives organized in practice in organizations? That is, what organizations, groups and individuals are being enrolled in diversity/inclusion activities, and how do they react to these initiatives?
  • What role do non-human objects play in the work with diversity/inclusion in organizations?
  • Does diversity lead to innovation as some research claims?
  • How will the recent waves of refugees impact diversity work in organizations in the near future?
  • How does global migration patterns affect diversity in organizations?

These are some topics to explore, but the track is open for any ideas critically exploring alternative ways of understanding and working with diversity in organizations.


Acker, J. (2006). Inequality Regimes: Gender, Class, and Race in Organizations. Gender & Society, 20(4), 441–464.

D’Netto, B., & Sohal, A. S. (1999). Human resource practices and workforce diversity: an empirical assessment. International Journal of Manpower, 20(8), 530–547.

Janssens, M., & Zanoni, P. (2014). Alternative diversity management: Organizational practices fostering ethnic equality at work. Scandinavian Journal of Management, 30(3), 317–331.

Tatli, A. (2011). A Multi-layered Exploration of the Diversity Management Field: Diversity Discourses, Practices and Practitioners in the UK. British Journal of Management, 22(2), 238–253.

Yang, Y., & Konrad, A. M. (2011). Understanding Diversity Management Practices: Implications of Institutional Theory and Resource-Based Theory. Group & Organization Management, 36(1), 6–38.

Zanoni, P., Janssens, M., Benschop, Y., & Nkomo, S. (2010). Guest Editorial: Unpacking Diversity, Grasping Inequality: Rethinking Difference Through Critical Perspectives. Organization, 17(1), 9–29.

Session chairs
Annette Risberg, Professor, Høgskolen Innlandet/ Copenhagen Business School
Andreas Diedrich, Gothenburg University/GRI, Senior lecturer,
Lotte Holck, Postdoc, Copenhagen Business School,
Laurence Romani, Assistant professor, Stockholm School of Economics,

Session 12. Structure in 2018. Digital, temporary, inter-organizational, multidimensional and flat

Design of organizational structure has always been a central topic in organi-zation studies. Change of structure is an actual measure of today’s virtual, digital, transitory, complex, network based and competence heavy ‘world of organizations’. A number of researchers in Norway has contributed to research on this topic, included Groth’s work on “Future organizational design”. Moreover, Røvik’s books on organizational recipes, Fjeldstad’s articles on actor-oriented structure and how to design the digital organization. In addition, Worren’s textbook on organizational design (“redefining complex systems”), Søderlund’s concept of the P-form, together with (organization-enlightened) studies by political scientists on New Public Management.

In the present session, we invite to professional discussions and presentations of papers within the topic of organizational structure. The session chair’s intention is to summon researchers across subjects, institutional contexts and subject approaches. Actual contributions can be pure theory papers, empirical studies, practical cases or presentations directed towards teaching in this topic.

Contributions can cover

  • Public and private sector
  • Various methods and sources of data
  • Different perspectives
  • Examples of actual topics can be
  • How to build projects and temporary tasks into structure, and which challenges do this represent?
  • Organizational design as a measure in public sector
  • How does digitalization influence organizational structure? Moreover, how do various structures arrange for using digital tools for work processes, problem solving, communication and governance?
  •  Structure of coordination of inter government agencies, enterprise collaboration and inter-organizational projects
  • The relationships between physical structure, localization and organizational structure
  • Alternatives to hierarchy and bureaucracy. Matrix organization, flat structure, self-organization etc.
  • Structures for innovations or innovation without structure?
  • Structure for the two-hand. How to combine development and innovation with efficiency and operation?
  • Challenges of governance and management in complex organizations

Type of session. This is therefore only a selection of actual research questions within this session. I would like to have abstracts of papers, and others proposals for presentation. The session chair will set up having invited speakers in order to make the session productive for those concerned. The track organizer will arrange for following up the session with an issue in an academic journal.

Session chair
Torstein Nesheim, Seniorforsker/SNF, NHH og Professor II ved Institutt for administrasjon og organisasjonsvitenskap. UiB,

Session 13. Digital transformation and its effect on social development, organizational design and management

Topic. Digitalization has an impact in many ways on society, organizations and workers. While profits related to efficiency are enormous, managers have also to handle the consequences. Digital transformation can as well contribute to eliminate jobs and create new. Digitalization can play a role in new forms of organization providing through efficiency improvement a competitive edge, however it can also function inhibiting for creativity and diversity. Going digital forces people to ‘learning lifelong’ in order to cope with constantly new ICT tools that we have to learn to use as well as inhabitants and associates. While we are taking the advantage of digital transformation, we should not forget to judge critically at the consequences.

Sub-themes in this track might be.

Digital transformation and places of work. How does digital transformation influence employment? Shall jobs disappear? Which one? How does the Human Resource Department prepare for this change?

Grünfeld (2013) points to the weakening for many years of Norwegian industry’s cost competitiveness measured by relative costs of hourly pay in a common currency. When we turn to the last report from The Committee of Technical Measurements, the cost competitiveness has the last ten years (2002-2012) been reduced on the average with 1.6 percent a year. When researchers compare Norwegian industry with trading partners in the European Union (EU), the costs of hourly pay was in 2013 measured in a common currency about 55 percent higher in Norway. Therefore, it will be hard for Norwegian enterprises to compete with those abroad. Consequently, management approach anew to promote the competitive edge, for example, through automation. ICT facilitates automation of production of goods and services leading to that some places of work might vanish, while new arise. There is in this fact, as well as potentials and challenges related to unemployment, need for twisting competence etc.

The next sub-theme in session 13 might be.

Digital transformation and digital Taylorism. How does digital transformation influence how we design organizations and how we manage? With virtual teams and management at a distance, we are more and more dependent of management based on trust. Simultaneously enable digital tools to micro management and micro control. Can the digitalization go too far? Which expected psychosocial effects will digitalization have on employees?

A number of organizations, private as well as public, attempt to achieve technology-driven innovation in order to reduce operation costs. Many private organizations apply innovation to create new potentials for revenue, while public organizations are concerned about enhancing user involvement and user-friendliness of service, together with the quality of service.

Researchers have pointed to that a number of organizations have a deterministic approach to technology development, and consider as necessary that the whole organization digitalize as fast as possible. The other side of the coin is an increasing extent of standardization, bureaucratization and surveillance. This ‘digital Taylorism’ creates obstacles for creativity, new thinking and innovation.

The next sub-theme in session 13 might be. Innovation and digital competence.

With a continuous element of digital tools in society and organizations, it will be important to have command of these tools. Does the educational policy put for this at the national level and in organizations? What to do about vulnerable groups that do not manage to follow this development?

New information- and communication technology will demand new skills as the Internet, artificial intelligence, robot-technology and 3D printout. In the last years, digital competence has been a key concept in discussions on which skills and understanding that the pupils will need in the knowledge society. Many students attend higher and higher education in the new scenery of education without the skills they need for using digital technology for education (European Commission 2013). To extend and improve the digital competence in the future   is an important component in developing employees. Since 90 percent of the new jobs will demand good digital skills, will those with insufficient skills in ICT face a disadvantage on the labour market (European Commission, 2013, JISC, 2013)? Digital competence has to be stronger from the basic training and through all phases of life in order to ensure participation and trust in digital solutions. Does Norway do enough for ensuring digital competence in the perspective of life phases?

Type of session. Session based on papers. Publishing. I have a standing offer from IGI Global to edit a special issue, and I would like to make one on this track.

Session chair. Solveig Evenstad, Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences

Session 14. Service innovation and user orientation in municipal health services

The background for this parallel session is the need for innovation and new thinking in municipal health services. Municipal innovations characterized by (1) collective entrepreneurship by rooting it in local democracy, the purpose is to improve solutions of community, (2) coupling across boundaries of sectors and level of governance, and (3) a peculiar diffusion process that occurs in the individual municipalities and disperse to neighbouring municipalities and in the region and the rest (Ringholm et al 2013). In the latter aspect, in particular that we find sources of new thinking and turning to more user managed services for persons with substance and mental illness in municipalities. There is a need for research on new organizational solutions that promote recovery, coping, user co-determination, efficient operation and improved flow in the services rendered for a group of clients with complex and intricate need for assistance. Specialists have developed these services in accordance with continuous greater municipal responsibility within the field of health. The session chairs will also focus on codetermination, efficiency and building competence for the service providers, Moreover, the role of client organizations, together with the efforts of voluntaries in working for innovation aimed at the individual client and services.

Type of session. The session chairs will base the session on papers. We suggest exchange of papers before the conference with feedback and role of discussants on the conference. The session chairs will also in this way make a work forum for scientific publishing. The chairs will arrange for a workshop on academic papers that will be published in national or international journals. Another purpose is to publish papers from the present session as a possible special issue in NOS on innovation processes.

Session chairs

Rita Sørly, Researcher/ PhD Norut samfunn  email:  mobile +47 94781398 and May-Britt Ellingsen, forskningssjef/ PhD Norut samfunn email: mobile +47 45237115.

Session 15. Time for bio-circular economy: organizing, materiality and sustainability

In the present session, we will investigate the sustainable organization of bio-economic production and innovation with particular focus on creating new understanding of why materials matter.

People has in general gradually realized that the age of industry’s utilization of resources and pursuit of economic growth has created major problems for nature and human beings. The linear growth model is under pressure in which enterprises utilize raw materials in the production without considering the long-term consequences of waste management or negative bio-products as for example chemicals. Oil and coal will be closed down, and a new understanding of resources arise, including innovations of biological materials as wood, plants , soil, algae, bacteria and water. Moreover, also innovations of the reuse of materials from plastic bags to food. However, what are the demands of the new, circular understanding of the earth’s resources and human consumption of organizations? Is it possible to reorganize a growth-oriented and short-term economy to one in which the point of departure is the value of materials in the world, included the welfare for people and nature?

Theoretical and empirical focus.

The track organizers will arrange for thought-provoking papers, which the presenters analyse bio-economy in practice. We are in particular interested in empirical studies that are close to local materiality; however, the organizers also appreciate conceptual investigations.

Examples of empirical phenomena could be.

  • Wood building and related value chains (forestry, wood mechanical industry, craft and architecture)
  • New local productions of goods and services/ experiences
  • Special traditions of craft and new developments
  • Waste separation and the development of reused materials
  • Creative firms within bio-economics
  • Sustainable innovations for health and welfare for human beings and animals
  • The significance of investment and audit models for choosing resources in various branches

The session chairs point to perspectives that challenge the understanding of linearity and strategy. We invite to discuss the role of human beings other and more than an individual economic actor. Put a little to the extreme, we analyse alternatives to ‘economic man’ (homo economicus), and play with the understanding of ‘bio-economic human’. The latter is an actor that exists in material relationships between humans and non-humans, and perceive itself as a part of a greater context of time and space. The session will theoretically deal with recent organizational, anthropological and semiotic perspectives on materiality such as ’Science and Technology Studies’ (STS) &’Actor-Network Theory’ (ANT). (Mol 2002; Law 2010) with alternative perspectives on innovations (Akrich, Callon & Latour 2002; Fosseli, Olsen & Kramvig 2009) and strategic change, roles and identities (Skærbæk & Tryggestad 2010).  Presenters can for example explore (the lack of) organizing during and around the climate change of the Anthropocene epoch (Berg Johansen & DeCock 2017; Tsing, Swanson, Gan & Bubandt 2017; Yusoff 2016, Wright et al. 2013). Moreover, they can theoreticize the actors and their ecological-economic dilemmas, for example, waste management (Corvellec et al. 2016), strategies and audits of sustainable building (Kibert 2016; Georg & Justesen 2017). Still moreover, the identity of animals, time and location in enterprises (Holm & Nielsen, 2007; Tryggestad, Justesen & Mouritsen, 2013).

Type of session. There is no prejudice on the session and room for untraditional inputs.

Together with publishing/presentation. The session will take place as a paper development workshop in which we address each papers in depth and discuss its potential and further development. Of this reason, there will be fewer papers than on a usual track. The discussion of papers will relate to questions as what is theoretically interesting. Which options for intervention does the paper giver arrange for? Which perspectives on time are ongoing? What is the specific of the actors understanding of materials?

Intercurrently each paper, there will be brief contributions on sustainable bio- economy from philosophical, artistic and practical perspectives.

All authors have to work on the papers after the session with the aim to publish an anthology (with working title ‘Bio-economy and sustainability- closer to tree, soil and water. Examples and discussions from Norway and Scandinavia’. Authors of submitted papers should therefore be interested in publishing in such an anthology.

Submitted papers can be ‘first draft’ or at a later stage, however the authors should be interested in developing it further from the state of submission.


Akrich, M., M. Callon & B. Latour (2002). The Key to Success in Innovation, Part I: The art of interessement. International Journal of Innovation Management, 6(2), 187-206Corvellec, H., Ek, R., Zapata, P., & Carlos Zapata, M.J. (2016). Acting on distances: A topology of accounting inscriptions, Accounting, Organizations and Society. In press

Berg Johansen, C., & De Cock, C. (2018). Ideologies of time: How elite corporate actors engage the future. Organization, Vol 25, Issue 2

Fosseli Olsen, E. & Kramvig, B. (2009): Kultur som næring: møter som sammenstøter? Magma 09/09

Georg, S. & Justesen, L. (2017). Counting to zero – accounting for a green building. Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 30 (5), 1065-1081

Holm, P. & Nielsen, K.N. (2007), “Framing fish, making markets: the construction of individual transferable quotas”. In Callon, M., Millo, Y. and Muniesa, F. (Eds), Market Devices, Blackwell/The Sociological Review, Oxford, 173-95.

Kibert, Charles J. (2016). Sustainable construction: green building design and delivery. 4. ed. Hoboken, N.J. : John Wiley.

Law, J. (2010). The Materials of STS. I: D. Hicks & M. Beaudry (Red.) The Oxford Handbook of Material Culture Studies. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 173-183

Law, J. & Lin, W.Y. 2010 Cultivating disconcertment. The Sociological Review, Dec, 2010, Vol.58 (2.suppl.), pp.135-153

Mol, A. (2002) The Body Multiple: Ontology in Medical Practice. Durham: Duke University Press

Skærbæk, P. and Tryggestad, K. (2010). The role of accounting devices in performing corporate strategy. Accounting, Organizations and Society, 35, 108-124.

Tryggestad, K., L. Justesen & J. Mouritsen (2013). Project Temporalities: How frogs can become stakeholders. International Journal of Managing Projects in Business, 6(1), 69-87.

Tsing, A. L., Bubandt, N., Gan, E., & Swanson, H. A. (2017). Arts of Living on a Damaged Planet: Ghosts and Monsters of the Anthropocene. University of Minnesota Press.

Wright, C., Nyberg, D., De Cock, C., & Whiteman, G. (2013). Future imaginings: organizing in response to climate change. Organization, 20(5), 647-658.

Yusoff, K. (2016). Anthropogenesis: Origins and endings in the Anthropocene. Theory, Culture & Society, 33(2), 3-28.

Session chairs

Kjell Tryggestad, professor, Handelshøgskolen Innlandet – Fakultet for økonomi og samfunnsvitenskap, Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences

Christina Berg Johansen, ekstern lektor og forsker, Copenhagen Business School

Britt Kramvig, professor, UiT Norges Arktiske Universitet

Mårten Hugosson, førsteamanuensis, Handelshøgskolen Innlandet – Fakultet for økonomi og samfunnsvitenskap, Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences

Session 16. Preparedness, crisis management and societal security

The research area represents management and handling of situations that in particular is challenging for individuals, organizations and society. Characteristic of crisis is scarcity of time, resources, and to a great extent uncertainty/limited information and important values at stake. The field embrace studies of prior (preparation), during (management) and after (normalization) of a crisis, and at different levels of analysis (individual, group/team, organization (public/private) and society).

The field of study include among other things studies of

  • The analysis of risk and risk governance
  • The management of security/safety/Health, Safety and Environment (HSE)
  • Preparedness planning and analysis
  • Crisis management and management of crisis, included
  • Crisis communication and handling of media
  • Organization of preparedness and crisis management
  • Work on team, team management and team training
  • Decision-making under uncertainty and time pressure
  • Specific cognitive processes, for example
  • Sense making
  • Situational understanding
  • Stress reactions
  • Modelling and simulation – ‘gamification’
  • Systems thinking and complexity
  • Legal considerations
  • Education – training, exercising and learning
  • Security policy and international relations

Session chairs

Bjørn Tallak Bakken – Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences
Thorvald Hærem – Handelshøgskolen BI
Monika Magnusson – Universitetet i Karlstad

Session 17. The police. Research on organization and management

The police is a unique institution in the modern state governed by the rule of law. The most significant characteristic is the right and duty to exercise on behalf of its citizens the State’s monopoly of violence. Further, the police has a key assignment to ensure safety for the public and seen in this way, the police is an administrator of core values of the welfare state – security. The police is a separate government agency, peculiar profession with internal schools, in which the members educate themselves and they socialize into distinct cultures (and subcultures) and often lifelong careers. At the same time, the police is a formal organization that actors apply the discourse on organization and management as an analytical grip as well as reform elements. The police has a long history as an interesting object of study for criminologists, sociologists and researchers on organization and management at the national as well as international level. Moreover, this interest got an increased upturn in Norway after the disaster 22 July and not the least the ensuing ‘Gjørv-report’ (NOU: 2012:14). The key diagnosis identified was concepts circulating around culture, leadership and attitudes. In their turn, triggered new studies and a major reform in which the professional foundation was not completely clear.

Type of session. The track organizers invite contributions from presenters who attempt to understand the police as an institution, organization, arena for exercising management and object of governance and reform. Moreover, in the tension between the particular (culture and institution) and the formal (framework of organization), and generic concepts of organization, governance and management.

Session chairs

Bent Sofus Tranøy, Professor, Høgskolen i Innlandet/Høgskolen Christiania
Vanja Lundgren Sørli, Førsteamanuensis, Politihøgskolen, vanja.lundgren,
Rune Glomseth, Førsteamanuensis, Politihøgskolen,

Session 18.How to study innovation – methodological implications

The public debate brings up public sector innovation as a decisive part to the challenges welfare society will face. There is a demand for experience and competence from the research field to meet these challenges.
Researchers have produced a number of studies that discuss how innovation occurs in public sector. Nevertheless, few contributions discuss methodological principles, and challenges related to the research on innovation. This session aims for strengthening design and method in innovation research through basic discussions of how researchers can study innovation in the public sector.
Studies of innovation can have a qualitative and quantitative approach and can in various ways capture innovations and innovation processes. The concept of innovation has had a normative character, which largely arise from the fact that people view innovations preferable and positively. However, are all innovations preferable? In this context, it is relevant to discuss which innovations we study. Even though the majority of innovations fail, there is still few studies of innovation failure. How can we understand innovations if we only study realizations?
Innovation research implies new demands on researchers who more frequently have to be active contributors in all stages of innovation projects, from concept development, through implementation to diffusion. In the extension of the researcher’s role as drivers of innovation, there is also a demand for extensive collaboration between research institutions, public institutions, users of service, civil society and industry. Beyond to challenge research methods and design, this represents a number of dilemmas to the role as researcher, such as; new balance between objectivity and subjectivity, analytical distance and proximity, the role as participant, facilitator, co-developer and novice, student and expert.
We welcome all types of methodological oriented papers, empirical as well as theoretical. The purpose is to strengthen the consciousness of methodological design in studies of innovation in the public sector. We welcome papers submitted in advance, and papers and abstracts presented on the session. The chairs will designate a discussant to each presenter.

Session chairs:
Ann Karin Tennås Holmen, førsteamanuensis, Statsvitenskap, Universitetet i Stavanger. E-post:
Jon Hovland Honerud, førsteamanuensis, Handelshøgskolen, Høgskolen i Sørøst-Norge. E-post:
Ragnhild Holmen Waldahl, forskningsleder, Nordlandsforskning. E-post:

Session 19. Cultural and creative industries. Arenas of material and immaterial innovations

Time is ripe to take cultural and creative industries seriously in which innovation and creativity seem to be even more in demand in more industries in the economy. This is a collective term of a very heterogeneous group of branches ranging from museums, archives, art, and handicraft to design, fashion, music, film, architecture and advertisements. These industries are themselves innovative in the sense of Schumpeter, and do not receive and apply innovations from other parts of economy. Moreover, these industries compete on other fields than the utility value of products and services. An important part of the total picture of innovation is aesthetics, symbolism and semiotics.

Type of session. In the present session, the chairs want to shed light on the point of intersection where culture will encounter industry, and the dynamic that enables. We are looking forward to contributions than illustrate regional relationships, those among enterprises and internal conditions within organizations.

We envisage a traditional session in which paper givers present their projects and findings. Contributors can either publish in Kunnskapsverkets rapportserie, or if there are sufficiently many contributions at a high level as a special issue in a Norwegian peer-reviewed journal as for example Magma.

Session chairs. Kunnskapsverket ved Atle Hauge og Torhild Andersen

Session 20. Sustainable business models – drivers, barriers and potentials

Norwegian researchers presently contribute well to new knowledge on corporate social responsibility (CSR) and sustainable industry (corporate sustainability, CS) published in international journals. They do also much well on presenting research results in Norwegian. However, Norwegian industry and organizational life need more! Therefore, we invite to submit contributions to a special issue on sustainable business models in the Magma. On the way to submitting to Magma, the session chairs will arrange a separate parallel session on the NEON conference 2018 at The Inland University of Applied Sciences. Moreover, with the possibility of submitting an extended abstract and related presentation.

Why sustainable business models?

We need right now more research on sustainable business models (SBM). Industry and trade at the national and international level will face a massive pressure to change because of problems of sustainability in the world. New technology (for example block chain) and changed customer preferences. In addition, many experts emphasize that scholars have until now researched too much on cases that organizations are supposed to work on CSR/CS. Therefore, we have to intensify now research on how organizations better can work with CSR/CS (confer for example Margolis & Walsh, 2003; Stephan et al., 2016).

Researchers have launched innovative sustainable business models (ISBM) as a tool in order to encounter these challenges (Roome & Louche, 2016; Schaltegger et al., 2012). Scholars define ISBM as ‘Innovations that create significant positive effects and/or reduce negative effects on the environment and/or society through changes in how the organization and its value network creates, deliver and supply value’ (Bocken et al., 2014, s. 44, our translation).

  1. Consider for example these contributions to international journals the last 3 years. Ahlström og Cornell (2018), Blindheim (2015), Carson et al. (2015a), Kreander et al. (2015), Midttun et al. (2015), Sjåfjell (2018), Sparrevik et al. (2018), Stoknes og Rockström (2018) og Vildåsen et al. (2017).
  2. Consider for example these peer-reviewed Norwegian contributions the last 3 years. Almås et al. (2015), Carson et al. (2015b), Ditlev-Simonsen (2017), Gramstad et al. (2017), Jørgensen og Pedersen (2017), Navrud (2016), Thornam og Mamelund (2015), Utgård (2017), Varlid et al. (2017) og Ødegård and Salinas (2016).
    3. Problems of sustainability in terms of social problems (as for example economic inequality, cf. Almås, 2012 and environmental problems (Rockström et al., 2009).

However, continuous increasing knowledge production within Sustainable Business Models is a young and complex research field with a number of unanswered questions. Examples of increasing knowledge production are (confer for example, Jørgensen & Pedersen, 2015; and Lovins et al., 1999. Moreover, Ritala et al., 2018; Schaltegger et al., 2016; Stubbs & Cocklin, 2008). In addition, ISBM (confer for example, Boons et al., 2013; Evans et al., 2017; França et al., 2017; Inigo et al., 2017; Schaltegger et al., 2016b; Weissbrod & Bocken, 2017), and adjacent field of research Innovative Business Models (confer  Foss & Saebi, 2017, for an overview). Relevant contributions to practice are also lacking within this field in Norwegian (two recent exceptions are Gramstad et al., 2017; Jørgensen & Pedersen, 2017). Therefore, we need research that is in particular relevant to practice on SBM and ISBM and in Norwegian.

What are we looking for?

We are looking for research contributions to primarily directed at managers and CSR/sustainable accountable in Norwegian organizations. Paper givers can focus for example on topics as:

  • Drivers and barriers of SBM and ISBM
  • Effects of SBM and ISBM
  • Best practice within SBM and ISBM
  • Circular-economic business models
  • Hybrid business models
  • Distinctive features of Norwegian business models of sustainability
  • Implementation of SBM and management of ISBM (included management and control systems)

The list of topics is tentative, and intended for inspiration. The session chairs wish welcome other thematics within SBM and ISBM or adjacent research fields when researchers perceive them as appropriate and relevant to practice.



Ahlström, H., & Cornell, S. E. (2018). Governance, polycentricity and the global nitrogen and phosphorus cycles. Environmental Science & Policy, 79, 54–65.
Almås, I. (2012). International Income Inequality: Measuring PPP Bias by Estimating Engel Curves for Food. American Economic Review, 102(2), 1093–1117.
Almås, I., Cappelen, A. W., Haaland, I., & Tungodden, B. (2015). Rettferdig ulikhet. Magma.
Econas tidsskrift for økonomi og ledelse, (6), 38–43.
Blindheim, B.-T. (2015). Institutional models of corporate social responsibility: A proposed refinement of the explicit-implicit framework. Business & Society, 54(1), 52–88.
Bocken, N. M. P., Short, S. W., Rana, P., & Evans, S. (2014). A literature and practice review to develop sustainable business model archetypes. Journal of Cleaner Production, 65, 42-56.
Boons, F., Montalvo, C., Quist, J., & Wagner, M. (2013). Sustainable innovation, business models and economic performance: an overview. Journal of Cleaner Production, 45, 1–8.
Carson, S. G., Hagen, Ø., & Sethi, S. P. (2015a). From Implicit to Explicit CSR in a Scandinavian Context: The Cases of HÅG and Hydro. Journal of Business Ethics, 127(1), 17–31.
Ditlev-Simonsen, C. D. (2017). Dulting – endringer i bærekraftig retning med god endringsledelse. Magma. Econas tidsskrift for økonomi og ledelse, (7), 61–69.
Carson, S. G., Kosberg, N., Skauge, T., & Laudal, T. (2015b). Etikk for beslutningstakere. Oslo: Cappelen Damm Akademisk.
Evans, S., Vladimirova, D., Holgado, M., Van Fossen, K., Yang, M., Silva, E. A., & Barlow, C. Y. (2017). Business Model Innovation for Sustainability: Towards a Unified Perspective for Creation of Sustainable Business Models. Business Strategy and the Environment, 26(5), 597–608.
Foss, N. J., & Saebi, T. (2017). Fifteen Years of Research on Business Model Innovation.
Journal of Management, 43(1), 200–227.

França, C. L., Broman, G., Robèrt, K.-H., Basile, G., & Trygg, L. (2017). An approach to business model innovation and design for strategic sustainable development. Journal of Cleaner Production, 140, 155–166.
Gramstad, C. S., Helland, S., & Saebi, T. (Red.). (2017). Nye forretningsmodeller i handelen.
Innovasjon for en bærekraftig fremtid. Oslo: Universitetsforlaget.
Inigo, E. A., Albareda, L., & Ritala, P. (2017). Business model innovation for sustainability: exploring evolutionary and radical approaches through dynamic capabilities. Industry and Innovation, 24(5), 515–542.
Jørgensen, S., & Pedersen, L. J. T. (2015). Responsible and Profitable. Strategies for sustainable business models. Oslo, Norway: Cappelen Damm Akademisk.
Jørgensen, S., & Pedersen, L. J. T. (2017). RESTART. 7 veier til bærekraftig business. Oslo: Cappelen Damm Akademisk.
Kreander, N., McPhail, K., & Beattie, V. (2015). Charity ethical investments in Norway and the UK: A comparative institutional analysis including the impact of a sovereign wealth fund. Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 28(4), 581–617.
Lovins, A. B., Lovins, L. H., & Hawken, P. (1999). A road map for natural capitalism. Harvard Business Review, 77(3), 145–158.
Midttun, A., Gjølberg, M., Kourula, A., Sweet, S., & Vallentin, S. (2015). Public Policies for Corporate Social Responsibility in Four Nordic Countries. Business & Society, 54(4), 464–500.
Navrud, S. (2016). Miljørapportering – fra utslippsregnskap til økosystemtjenester og miljøkostnader? Praktisk økonomi & finans, 32(03), 274–281.
Ritala, P., Huotari, P., Bocken, N., Albareda, L., & Puumalainen, K. (2018). Sustainable business model adoption among S&P 500 firms: A longitudinal content analysis study. Journal of Cleaner Production, 170, 216–226.
Rockström, J., Steffen, W., Noone, K., Persson, A., Chapin, F. S., Lambin, E. F., … Foley, J. A. (2009). A safe operating space for humanity. Nature, 461(7263), 472–475.
Roome, N., & Louche, C. (2016). Journeying Toward Business Models for Sustainability: A Conceptual Model Found Inside the Black Box of Organisational Transformation. Organization & Environment, 29(1), 11–35.
Schaltegger, S., Hansen, E. G., & Lüdeke-Freund, F. (2016a). Business Models for Sustainability: Origins, Present Research, and Future Avenues. Organization & Environment, 29(1), 3–10.
Schaltegger, S., Lüdeke-Freund, F., & Hansen, E. G. (2012). Business cases for sustainability: the role of business model innovation for corporate sustainability. International Journal of Innovation and Sustainable Development, 6(2), 95–119.
Schaltegger, S., Lüdeke-Freund, F., & Hansen, E. G. (2016b). Business Models for Sustainability: A Co-Evolutionary Analysis of Sustainable Entrepreneurship, Innovation, and Transformation. Organization & Environment, 29(3), 264 –289.
Sjåfjell, B. (2018). Redefining the Corporation for a Sustainable New Economy. Journal of Law and Society, 45(1), 29–45.

Sparrevik, M., Wangen, H. F., Fet, A. M., & De Boer, L. (2018). Green public procurement–A case study of an innovative building project in Norway. Journal of Cleaner Production, 188, 879–887.
Stephan, U., Patterson, M., Kelly, C., & Mair, J. (2016). Organizations Driving Positive Social Change: A Review and an Integrative Framework of Change Processes. Journal of Management, 42(5), 1250–1281.
Stoknes, P. E., & Rockström, J. (2018). Redefining green growth within planetary boundaries.
Energy Research & Social Science, 44, 41–49.
Stubbs, W., & Cocklin, C. (2008). Conceptualizing a “Sustainability Business Model”. Organization & Environment, 21(2), 103–127.
Thornam, H., & Mamelund, E. (2015). Hvorfor fremtidens rapportering er integrert – og hvordan ta det første steget. Magma. Econas tidsskrift for økonomi og ledelse, (1), 62–69.
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Vildåsen, S. S., Keitsch, M., & Fet, A. M. (2017). Clarifying the Epistemology of Corporate Sustainability. Ecological Economics, 138, 40–46.
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Ødegård, A., & Salinas, C. G. (2016). Samfunnsansvar i praksis – et møte mellom fortid og fremtid. Det finske selskapet UPM og lokalsamfunnet Fray Bentos i Uruguay. Magma. Econas tidsskrift for økonomi og ledelse, (5), 59–66.

Session chairs

Sveinung Jørgensen, Førsteamanuensis, Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences ,
Lars Jacob Tynes Pedersen, Førsteamanuensis, Norges Handelshøyskole
Erlend Aas Gulbrandsen, stipendiat, Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences ,

Session 21. Still a Nordic model of organization and management?

The so-called Nordic model seems to gain in strength as a brand. In addition, recent popular theories of management and organization emphasize principles and values associated with the Nordic management tradition such as workers influence, distributed leadership, team organizing etc. At the same time, it is often pointed out that there has been a strong inflow of models of organizing and management from the Anglo-American context into the Nordic region. Many Nordic firms and public agencies now seem to be keen to introduce mainstream practices and organizational models, rather than look for or develop something particularly Nordic. There has also been a few studies pointing to a similar translation of organizational concepts from the Nordic region, to other contexts, but such studies frequently end up concluding that the Nordic model is vanishing at home-front and that it is frequently «lost in translation» as it is exported. One question asked is whether the influx of new management concepts from the Anglo-Saxon and other contexts really represent a challenge to the established employment systems within the Nordic countries. Many observers have pointed out the paradoxical survival of the Nordic model on a societal and global level at the same time as the preconditions for what historically been labelled the Nordic model at a workplace level seems not to be present any more.

We invite papers that either deal with the idea that there is a Nordic model within management and organization at work in Nordic societies and whether this model, if it ever existed, is now challenged by current development trends. To what extent is, the current models challenged by the influx of new management concepts related to digitalization, the sharing economy or financialization? Papers that explore how actors are making use of the Nordic model of organization and management in reform processes within the Nordic countries or in other parts of the world are also welcome.

Session chairs

Haldor Byrkjeflot, Professor, Universitetet i Oslo,
Lars Klemsdal, Førsteamanuensis, Universitetet i Oslo,
Jan Ketil Arnulf, Professor, Handelshøgskolen BI,
Hanne Finnestrand, Førsteamanuensis, NTNU.

Session 22.Creativity and innovation

Following Hjort, Strati and Weik (2018), organizational research marks by a conceptual shift of climate from solid to liquid forms of organization and organizing. Creativity and innovation has concurrently sprang up as the foremost symbol on the road to survival and growth in a turbulent world. Moreover, these developments characterize by industrial complexity, rapid technological shifts, major global, social and economic challenges and quick changes of market and competition conditions (Oddane, 2017). These words appear from time to time separately, however frequently as pairs in the popular duo of concepts of creativity. Among researchers, there is a consensus on that the concepts are closely related, and creativity is a condition for innovation. Despite this fact, researchers distinguish in the literature into a fundamental barrier between research on creativity and innovation. While the researcher on creativity address primarily the generation of ideas at the micro level of analysis, the researcher on innovation looks towards implementation of creative ideas at the macro level (Perry-Smith and Mannucci, 2017). The division of labour is the source of simplified and one-sided notions of creativity and innovation, including the relationships between these (Oddane, 2017). In addition, the division makes pregnant discussions more difficult between researchers on creativity and innovation (Sawyer, 2011; Dogson, 2011; Andersson et al., 2014, Cropley, 2016).

The session chairs base that creativity and innovation involve open-ended problems (Amabilie, 1996; Coyne, 2005), and collective problem solving (Hargadon and Becky, 2006; Hessel, 2013; Oddane, 2017). Open-ended problems are complex, based on none-routine tasks as opposed to closed problems that actors cannot solve by means of familiar recipes, routines or approaches alone. We exemplify this point by following questions.

How to solve the problems of plastic in the ocean? How to succeed with The Health Reform of Interaction in Norway? How to shape organization studies that are good and future-oriented at Norwegian universities and colleges?

The nature of problem necessitates collective efforts from a magnitude of actors who cannot predict consequences of own decisions, or the ultimate outcome of the problem-solving process. In this way, a central problem for discussion to most organizations become the courage and the ability of creating new things in complex and unpredictable environments

Type of session

The session chairs desire a broad thematization of problems for discussion, practices and perspectives related to the undertakings’ work on open-ended problems in various contexts of organization, thematic and branch. We wish to invite paper givers to reflect on ideas, problems at hand and results formed as paper presentations. We welcome conceptual, empirical and methodological contributions. Moreover, we would like to that, presenters submit problem-atizing and inventive inputs that build a bridge between research on creativity and innovation. The track organizers open for a blend of submitted papers (with submission of abstracts in accordance with the usual procedure of NEON), and papers and rough drafts presented there and then. Submitted papers will be subject to prepared comments at least from one discussant, and recruited among paper givers participating with submitted papers. Dependent of the number of presenters, the chairs will set aside sufficient time for feed- back on presented papers.

The session chairs will not arrange for separate activities of publication. However, encourage participants to produce contributions that the organizer of the NEON conference will set up for referee.

Session chairs

Torild Alise W. Oddane, førsteamanuensis, NTNU Handelshøyskolen
Mobiltelefon: +47 913 04 324
Skypetelefon: +47 73 55 99 0

Knut Arne Hovdal, førsteamanuensis, NORD universitet
E-post: knut.a.hovdal@nord.noMobiltelefon: +47 952 00 051
Skypetelefon: +47 74 11 22 57

Session 23. 40 years (soon) with NPM reforms: Taking stock and assessing the development

New public management (NPM), conceptualized as different administrative doctrines often used in public sector reforms in many OECD-countries since 1979, has been discussed and studied for a long time. Many conceptualise NPM as radical reforms and thinking closely related to neo-liberalism and policies aiming at reducing the traditional public administration (TPA) and the size of the public sector, typically by privatization, contracting out services and using more formal contracts and financial incentives in management and employee relations. Even though this is a common conception of NPM, there are also many other administrative doctrines that are used in public sector reforms as alternatives to bureaucracy in the traditional public administration, such as decentralization and empowerment, in addition to the most radical ‘hard core’ NPM-elements. Often-used management tools such as strategic planning, organizational design, performance management, and evaluation, have also been employed in public management reforms for strengthening the government capacity and functioning without necessarily aiming for reducing the scope or size of the public sector, at least in the Nordic countries. Therefore, NPM is ill defined as congruent with only one ideology and only with one fiscal policy. In fact, NPM-doctrines have been embraced by social democrat, liberal as well as conservative political regimes, and the specific policies adopted have often been pragmatic, complex, gradual, and adapted to specific local circumstances. Some have pointed to the many unintended effects of using typical NPM-related doctrines and therefore argued for the reintroduction of bureaucracy and better co-ordination in government. Others have argued for replacing NPM with other paradigms with allegedly newer conceptions of governance such as new public service (NPS) in the USA and co-production and new public governance (NPG) in Europe. Still others have argued for viewing traditional public administration, NPM and NPG not as competing paradigms but as complementing and co-existing paradigms where the major public policy problem is finding a good balance of different administrative doctrines and practices over time, between different sectors and across different tiers of government, resulting in hybrid organisations. Common to many of these discourses is the lack of hard evidence on the outcomes of many reforms and different management tools, possibly because producing such evidence is so hard to do. However, there is a growing empirical literature also on the effects of public sector reforms and the impacts of many management tools, partly because there is better access to relevant administrative data and the availability of time series data. 40 years (nearly) after NPM were introduced is an opportune time to take stock and assess some of the experiences with NPM reforms and their related administrative doctrines and management tools. In this track, we move beyond the discourse on ‘for’ or ‘against’ NPM and ask:

How has NPM been conceptualized in the Nordic countries?

How has different countries and public sector organisations adopted typical NPM-related administrative doctrines and management tools?

How has the strategic management affected strategic thinking and planning in public sector organisations, and how has this development affected public sector organisations’ outcomes and innovation?

How has organizational design including agencification and contracting out affected public sector organisations, and how has this development affected public sector organisations’ practices, efficiency and effectiveness, including innovation?

How has the performance management affected public sector organisations, and how has this development affected public sector organisations’ efficiency, effectiveness and innovation?

We expect these issues to be discussed further at different seminars and conferences in the coming year, and this track may be used as a stepping-stone for those who want to develop research ideas, empirical or comparative papers. Papers that document the adoption of NPM-related administrative doctrines countries and papers that empirically assess the impact of typical NPM-related management tools in the Nordic countries are especially welcome.

Deadline for papers is 1 November. There will be a discussant for each paper. Papers may be published in a special issue of a relevant journal or as a book.

Session chairs

Åge Johnsen, Professor, OsloMet,
Sven Siverbo, Professor, Högskolan Väst,
Tobias Johansson, Universitetslektor, Örebro universitet,
Jesper Rosenberg Hansen, Associate professor, Aarhus Universitet,

Session 24. Other theme
If participants do not find an appropriate track for presentation, please sign up paper under “Other theme”  and specify the topic.


General guidelines for submitting papers to the NEON conference 2018


Presenters of abstracts should inform on the research question, purpose, possible hypotheses, design, methodology, analysis, conclusion, together with originality and implications. The length of abstract should not exceed 500 words. Participants register the abstract on the web-based form of the conference. The organizer of NEON conference will also wish welcome papers from countries outside Norway.

The organizer will accept abstracts and papers in English.

The conference has closed the submission of abstracts.



Participants, who intend to publish in a scientific journal, have to observe that topic and length of finished paper have to be in accordance with the requirements of journal. Please inform on first page of finished paper: Title of paper, name of author (s), e-mail address and institution. In the case of more than one author, please inform on corresponding author.

Important dates

  • Deadline for submission of paper proposals is September 2nd 2018.
  • Deadline for refereed feedback from conference organizer is the 10th of September
  • Final date for registration: The 14th of October 2018.
  • Deadline for conference papers: The 14th of October
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