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PhD stipend in Innovation Ecosystem in a Sino-Danish Perspective (02337)

At the Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Business and Management, a PhD stipend in Innovation Ecosystem in a Sino-Danish Perspective is open for appointment on 1 December 2019 or as soon as possible. The stipend is co-financed by Sino-Danish Centre for Education and Research (SDC) http://sdc.university/

Job description

Innovation ecosystem refers to a set or network of multilateral economic agents that interact to realize an innovation and a value proposition. It has received increasing interests in academia, industry and policy in the past two decades. In practice, ecosystem is an emerging organizational form to arrange innovation and entrepreneurial activities, a mechanism to coordinate value co-creation and value capture, and a strategic mindset for business practitioners to manage innovation. Together with its popularization, “innovation ecosystem” as a term is also highly criticized to be ambiguous, which calls for both theoretical and empirical researches

The PhD project aims to enhance the pioneering research area of innovation ecosystem and thus contribute to SDC’s social science research and educational activities. This PhD project focuses on one or more of the following topics:

  • The nature of innovation ecosystem and the interplay between value creation and value capture, cooperation and competition (coopetition), and exploitation and exploration in innovation ecosystems
  • Institutional impacts and innovation ecosystem focusing on the Sino-Danish context.
  • The evolutionary process of innovation ecosystem and the associated technological and managerial issues
  • Entrepreneurial development and SME strategies in an ecosystem perspective

Based on research interests and specialties, the PhD candidate is required to choose one or integrate several of the above topics, propose own research questions focusing on the Sino-Danish contexts, and adopt relevant scientific methods. The PhD candidate is required to spend 12 months in China within the 36 months’ PhD period.

The position is supported by the Sino-Danish research networks including scholars from Aalborg University, and leading innovation researchers from top Chinese Universities. The PhD scholar will also be involved in the education and facilitation of the SDC master program in Innovation Management in Beijing.

 Qualification requirements

The PhD scholarship has a duration of three years. Applicants to the PhD scholarship must hold a degree equivalent to a Danish Master’s degree. Applicants enrolled at a Danish Master programme who expect to graduate before the date of appointment must forward statement from thesis supervisor, verified transcripts, a copy of thesis contract and documentation for the date of their final exam.

Please find information on admission requirements for PhD positions on the website of the Doctoral School.

We look for a talented and ambitious candidate having the following qualifications:

  • Master degree in innovation management, business and economics, or related fields
  • Ability to work independently and collaborate cross-culturally, which requires solid communication skills
  • Excellent English writing and speaking skills to accommodate scientific work and dissemination purposes. Danish and/or Chinese speaking are an advantage.
  • Promising academic records, well trained skills on applying scientific research methods.

The completion of the scholarship will be in accordance with the Ministerial Order on the PhD Programme at the Universities No 1039 of 27 August 2013 (the PhD Order), and it is a prerequisite for allocation of a scholarship that enrolment as a PhD student at the Doctoral School of Social Sciences takes place. According to the PhD Order, the PhD study comprises among other requirements: Participation in active research environments, including stays at other, mainly foreign, research institutions, private research enterprises etc.

Application requirements 

  • letter of motivation
  • project proposal (approx. 5 pages) containing the research project title, an outline of the course of study and a description of the overall problem areas
  • information on which language the PhD thesis is expected to be written in
  • curriculum vitae
  • diplomas confirming academic degrees (Master degree), including academic transcripts
  • Applicants WHO are planning to complete a doctoral thesis in English and who do not have English as a first language or WHO have not completed an English language-based Master's programme (or an equivalent educational achievement in English) shall provide documentation that they have passed one of the following official tests with the respective minimum score: IELTS (band score):7 TOEFL (paper-based): 600, TOEFL (internet-based): 100. 
  • Scientific qualifications: transcripts, publications if there are any, awards, etc.
  • Additional qualifications in relation to the position, e.g. references/recommendation letters, other documents the applicant wish to be considered
  • Co-author statement. If publications that have been written in cooperation with others are submitted, a declaration from each of the authors must be enclosed. The declaration must state the extent of the applicant’s contribution to the total work and be signed by the authors.
  • Application for credit transfer if relevant.
The complete application including attachments shall be sent electronically by selecting the "apply online" function. Please note that zipped files are not supported by the recruitment system, please upload only Word or PDF files.
Please note that Chinese citizens including citizens from Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Macao are not eligible for the position. PhD candidates from China (including Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Macao) must be enrolled through University of Chinese Academy of Sciences (UCAS).


The assessment of the applicants will be undertaken by an expert assessment committee.
Shortlisting will be applied. This means that subsequent to the deadline for applications, the head of department supported by the chair of the assessment committee will select candidates for assessment. All applicants will be informed whether they will be assessed or not. The selected applicants will be informed of the composition of the assessment committee, and each applicant will have the opportunity to comment on the part of the assessment that applies to the applicant in question. When the employment process has been terminated, a final rejection will be sent to the applicants who are not considered.

The Faculty draws your attention to the fact that the applicant's project description may be tested for plagiarism in the IT system iThenticate.

You may obtain further information regarding the academic contents of the position from Yimei Hu E-mail: yimei@business.aau.dk, phone: +45 99408360

If you have questions regarding the procedure of applying for the position, please contact Anne Lone Bråten E-mail: alb@adm.aau.dk


Appointment and salary in accordance with the Ministerial Order on the Appointment of Academic Staff at Universities No 242 of 13 March 2012 and The Ministry of Higher Education and Science Circular concerning the job structure for academic staff at universities of 19 August 2015. Salary will be in accordance with the agreements in force.

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