1-2 PhD students in Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Management of Intellectual Assets

Ref PAR 2022/1615

The University of Gothenburg tackles society’s challenges with diverse knowledge. 56 000 students and 6 600 employees make the university a large and inspiring place to work and study. Strong research and attractive study programmes attract scientists and students from around the world. With new knowledge and new perspectives, the University contributes to a better future.

The Department of Economy and Society at the School of Business, Economics and Law, University of Gothenburg announces a position as PhD student located at unit of innovation and entrepreneurship. The PhD student will be an important member of our new international center, U-GOT KIES and in on-going international research projects. The unit offers single-subject courses at the Bachelor´s level, two Master´s programmes (MSc in Innovation and Industrial Management; MSc in Knowledge-based Entrepreneurship, and doctoral education. For more information click here

The PhD student project will study knowledge creation and knowledge transfer – between large and entrepreneurial firms and between firms and universities, within specific technologies and industries. We work with many firms, universities and organizations, regionally and globally, to conduct and present our research. Professor McKelvey’s Distinguished Professors Program, financed for 10 years  by the Swedish Research Council is the research group, within which these PhD students will work. Including a group of scholars at the department and internationally, the PhD students will be part of her research programme on knowledge-intensive entrepreneurial ecosystems.

This Distinguished Professor’s Program has three specific goals: 1) Conceptualize knowledge intensive entrepreneurial ecosystems; 2) Analyze empirically the dynamic relationships involving collective and individual action between knowledge intensive entrepreneurs (as individuals) and the surrounding institutions, firms and organizations; and 3) Explain changes in these knowledge-intensive entrepreneurial ecosystems over time.


The purpose of the 1 to 2 projects is to better understand how and why innovation and entrepreneurship can impact business and society in Sweden, using social science methodology. Each project will be focused upon a carefully selected topic, addressing these phenomena within one of these areas: medical technology, sports, transportation/AI/engineering, or creative industries in Sweden.

Each PhD student’s project, as part of our international research team, will provides answers to research questions. Current ones include:

1) Explain the similiarities and differences between the long-term development of tech-based ecosystems. For example, an interesting comparison is between Austin, Texas and Stockholm.

2) Specify how and why new technology is changing entrepreneurship within medical techology or the sports industries in Sweden.

3) Define how and why collaboration between university scientists and a large firm can be improved. For example, AstraZeneca may wish to develop such collaboration to develop new medicine while Volvo Cars may do so for new technologies like AI.

4) Analyze Nordic knowledge-intenstive entrepreneurial projects and companies, which are developing technology for energy transition. For example, compare why and how innovators and entrepreneurs in two Nordic countries act, relative to the threats and opportunities for dissementation and application for carbon capture technology.

The doctoral education (leading to PhD degree) in innovation, entrepreneurship and management of intellectual assets consists of completing a scientific project as well as completing doctoral courses of at least 90 credits. Moreover, the PhD student may be asked to apply and discuss their results in collaboration with companies, universities and the public sector as well as participate in international scientific conferences. The doctoral education requires a PhD thesis of either compiled papers or a monography, corresponding to 150 credits, and defended in public. More information about the the doctoral education at the department can be found at https://www.gu.se/en/school-business-economics-law/economy-society/doctoral-studies 


Entry requirements for third-cycle (doctoral) programmes require both general and specific eligibility.

The general eligibility requirements for education at third-cycle level are:    

  1. having completed a degree at second-cycle level, 
  2. the fulfilment of course requirements totalling at least 240 credits, of which at least 60 credits must be at second-cycle level, or  
  3. the acquisition of equivalent knowledge in some other way, either in Sweden or abroad.  

In addition, admission to the third-cycle programme in Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Management of Intellectual Assets at the University of Gothenburg also requires with 15 credits in a course as well as 15 credits in an advanced thesis, within the subject or a closely related topic.

Qualified is the person who masters English at a high level in speech and writing. The level of proficiency defined here is English language requirement of English 6/English B from Swedish upper secondary school or the equivalent level of an internationally recognized test. For more information about general entrance requirements see www.universityadmissions.se (English)

Applicants who do not speak Swedish already will be expected to learn Swedish during the PhD education.  

Applicants can apply before fulfilling all these requirements, but the decision for admission can only be made after all requirements are fulfilled.


Applicants will be assessed based on the general and specific eligibility requirements and their estimated ability to benefit from the PhD study programme.

During the assessment, we will specifically evaluate and place a high value upon documented experience of:

  • specific knowledge and skills within the research subject area and closely related fields
  • experience of scientific theory and relevant research methods
  • scientific analysis and presentation. This should be documented through, for example, Master’s thesis, degree projects, scientific papers, etc.

Personal suitability is of importance for the appointment of employment. For the position it is important with ability to co-operate. You should be able to work independently as well as in a team. You should have characteristics which enable you to learn, also through interacting with leading scholars through PhD courses and conferences, both nationally and internationally.

Mastery of Swedish language is also important for the position, specifically Swedish which corresponds to Svenska 3 from Swedish upper secondary school or else ”Svenska som andra språk 3”. Also, important previous skills and experience are experience in conducting interviews, coding responses relative to theory, and Masters courses in qualitative methods. Other important skills and experience are also quantitative methods, for example, experinece with software programs like R, econometric studies, and similar quantitative methods.  


The position is a temporary position of four years according to the Higher Education Ordinance with an extent of 100 %. The employment is located at the unit of innovation and entrepreneurship, the Department of Economy and Society. First day of employment is 1 September 2023 or upon agreement.

Regulations for the evaluation of qualifications for education on a doctorial level are given in SFS 1993:100.

Only the one who are admitted to third-cycle (doctoral) programmes may be employed as PhD student. Departmental duties such as participating in teaching, research projects or administrative assignments may be required, as per regulated in university policy.

A new employment is valid for maximum one year. The employment extends with maximum two years at a time. The total employment time cannot extend more than four years of doctoral education on full-time.

The University applies a local agreement on salaries for doctoral students.   

For applicants with a Masters degree from a foreign country

If your degree is from a university/HEI outside of Sweden or has not been examined by a Swedish authority, it is important that you include a certified copy of your diploma and description of degree program, in order to facilitate evaluation. You also must include contact information (such as telephone number and email address) to the foreign institution which can verify your degree.

Please see further for information about the specific language requirement in English, see: https://www.universityadmissions.se/en/entry-requirements/english-language-requirements/ And for the positive specific language desirable in Swedish, see https://www.su.se/svefler/tisus

Selection process   

During the selection process, we will use a variety of methods to select suitable candidate/s. We will evaluate all applications according to the specified criteria. For a selected few candidate, we will conduct interviews, check the references, and evaluate the results of written assignments.  

Contact information 

Maureen McKelvey, Professor, +46-76-618-1442, maureen.mckelvey@handels.gu.se 


Union representatives at the University of Gothenburg can be found here:   


Please attach the following in the application:

  • Personal letter (max 2 pages. An overview of your previous experience, education, and future goals)
  • CV
  • Diploma / degree certificate or if ongoing/equivalent, completed courses and grades
  • Research proposal (max 2 pages. An overview of one option of how you could carry out this project – title, theory, method, expected outcomes – as related to this project)
  • A copy of thesis at advanced level (Master’s thesis, equivalent or final draft of Master’s thesis)
  • Certified copy of high school grades
  • Certificate / evidence that obtained language requirement in English and language recommendation in Swedish
  • 2 letters of reference, including their contact details
  • Other documents, relevant for the application

Please clearly state your Swedish social security (personnummer) in the application, preferably in the CV and Cover Letter. If you do not have a Swedish social security number, please use the format to only provide your birthdate: YEAR-MM-DD

Also clearly state the reference number to this recruitment case.

Applications must be received by:2023-04-14

Information for International Applicants 

Choosing a career in a foreign country is a big step. Thus, to give you a general idea of what we and Gothenburg have to offer in terms of benefits and life in general for you and your family/spouse/partner please visit: 



The University works actively to achieve a working environment with equal conditions, and values the qualities that diversity brings to its operations.

Salaries are set individually at the University.

In accordance with the National Archives of Sweden’s regulations, the University must archive application documents for two years after the appointment is filled. If you request that your documents are returned, they will be returned to you once the two years have passed. Otherwise, they will be destroyed.

In connection to this recruitment, we have already decided which recruitment channels we should use. We therefore decline further contact with vendors, recruitment and staffing companies.

Read the job description at the university homepage


Post expires on Friday April 14th, 2023