PhD fellowship in Innovation Management in Hospital Systems


The Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Management research group at the Department of Food and Resource Economics invites applicants for a PhD fellowship in Health Care System Innovation. The project is co-funded by RMIT European Doctoral Innovators (REDI), which is financed by European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement (MSCA) No 101034328. For more information about the REDI programme, see the REDI webside at: The PhD project is offered as a Double Degree in collaboration between UCPH and RMIT University in Melbourne, Australia.

Please notice that to apply for this MSCA scholarship, applicants will need to comply with the following minimum criteria: 1) you must be in the first four years of your research career and not yet have a doctoral degree; 2) you must be available for full-time employment; 3) you must not have resided or carried out your main activity (work/studies etc.) in Denmark for more than 12 months in the three years immediately before recruitment or be employed by University of Copenhagen at the time of the call deadline; 4) you must hold a Master’s degree with honours in a discipline related to the research project of your choice, including a research component, or equivalent academic qualifications and/or professional experience; and 5) you must have a minimum of C1 level English language proficiency. Further to the above, Applicants who are nationals or residents of countries, against which restrictive measures are in place either by the European Union or Australia, may be subject to additional security procedures.

Start date is expected to be 1 September 2022 or as soon as possible thereafter.

The project themes

The PhD fellowship is based on a close collaboration with the Capital Region of Denmark (CRD), the regional authority of the Copenhagen Region, which is responsible for managing Denmark’s largest hospital organization, including 11 hospitals and 36.000 employees. The overall objective of the fellowship is to conduct research in innovation processes and innovation management and contribute new knowledge that can support the future development of the CRD’s innovation practices. The PhD fellowship is expected to focus one of the following three research project themes:

Project proposal 1: This project aims to enrich our understanding of employee-driven innovation and investigates how best to promote and support entrepreneurship and innovation in health care systems. The project asks questions such as: What characterizes and drives employees who engage in innovation? How do they transform their ideas into value creating solutions? How, and under what conditions do employee innovators interact with the formal hospital innovation support systems and the broader ecosystem?

Project proposal 2: The project aims to enrich our understanding of how innovation and entrepreneurship in the health care and hospital sector can be supported by tools, heuristics and frameworks. The project will scrutinize existing and support the development of new innovation support tools. The project asks: Which types of processes and tools optimize innovation processes and long-term value creation. How are such processes best implemented within health care systems?

Project proposal 3: The project aims to enrich our understanding of the practices, structures and dynamics of the wider health innovation ecosystem with a focus on development of more coherent health pathways. The project asks: What characterizes the types and dynamics of processes within health sector innovation ecosystems? Who are the involved actors, and what are their relationships? What hinders or promotes inter-organizational innovation processes?

Which of these themes the PhD student presumes will depend on prior academic experiences, and personal interest and competencies.

Who are we looking for?                        

We are looking for candidates with a background within fields such as, for example, innovation studies, organization studies, anthropology, public health, public administration, design studies, or entrepreneurship studies. You should have prior experiences with qualitative research methodologies and the projects are envisioned to be action research-based and aimed at contributing to the improvement of present practices at CRD. During the research, you will be expected to work closely with the CRD Health Research and Innovation Department and CRD practitioners.

Our group and research - and what do we offer?

As a PhD fellow, you will be part of the Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Management research group. We are a team of six who conducts research on management, innovation, innovation systems, entrepreneurship, university-industry collaboration and socio-technical transitions. Our research covers a range of aspects related to business development, entrepreneurial ecosystem and innovation systems, and organizational and interorganizational collaboration and innovation, often in the context of bioscience sectors. We work with a range of quantitative and qualitative methodologies. The IEM team members seek to explore the preconditions for promoting entrepreneurship and innovation at the individual as well as organizational level and contribute to the development of enhanced support and teaching practices. As a group, we teach courses in entrepreneurship, innovation, socio-technical transitions, business management and consultancy.

The group is a part of Department of Food and Resource Economics, Faculty of SCIENCE, University of Copenhagen. We are located in Copenhagen.

We offer creative and stimulating working conditions in a dynamic and international research environment.

Principal supervisor is Associate Professor Carsten Nico Hjortsø, Department of Food and Resource Economics, E-mail:, Direct Phone: +45 3533 2287.

In addition to the above mentioned four criteria related to the MSCA, to be eligible for the regular PhD programme, you must have completed a degree programme, equivalent to a Danish master’s degree (180 ECTS/3 FTE BSc + 120 ECTS/2 FTE MSc) related to the subject area of the project, e.g., innovation studies, organization studies, anthropology, public health, public administration, design studies, or entrepreneurship studies. For information of eligibility of completed programmes, see General assessments for specific countries and Assessment database.

Terms of employment
Employment as PhD fellow is full time and for maximum 3 years.

Employment is conditional upon your successful enrollment as a PhD student at the PhD School at the Faculty of SCIENCE, University of Copenhagen. This requires submission and acceptance of an application for the specific project formulated by the applicant.

The employment is conditioned on the applicants compliance with the requirements of the REDI program (see

The terms of employment and salary are in accordance to the agreement between the Ministry of Finance and The Danish Confederation of Professional Associations on Academics in the State (AC). The position is covered by the Protocol on Job Structure.

Responsibilities and tasks in the PhD programme

  • Carry through an independent research project under supervision
  • Complete PhD courses corresponding to approx. 30 ECTS / ½ FTE
  • Participate in active research environments, including a residential year at RMIT University in Melbourne, Australia, and participating in annual RMIT training weeks in Barcelona
  • Teaching and knowledge dissemination activities
  • Write scientific papers aimed at high-impact journals
  • Write and defend a PhD thesis on the basis of your project

We are looking for the following qualifications:

  • Professional qualifications relevant to the PhD project
  • Relevant publications
  • Relevant work experience
  • Other relevant professional activities
  • Curious mind-set with a strong interest in entrepreneurial and innovation processes
  • Good language skills

Application and Assessment Procedure

Your application including all attachments must be in English and submitted electronically by clicking APPLY NOW below.

Please include

  1. A separate application motivation letter (max. one page) for the each of three above-mentioned research project proposals (1-3) that the applicant is interested in persuing (one letter per theme applied for).
  2. A separate research proposal description for each of the three above-mentioned research project proposals (1-3) that the applicant is interested in persuing (one description per theme applied for)
  3. Curriculum vitae in the EUROPASS CV format (incl. publication list)  
  4. Original diplomas for Bachelor of Science or Master of Science and transcript of records in the original language, including an authorized English translation if issued in another language than English or Danish. If not completed, a certified/signed copy of a recent transcript of records or a written statement from the institution or supervisor is accepted.
  5. Proof of level of English proficiency 
  6. One-page overview of Master (or equivalient) research project (optional)
  7. Any other scientific output (scientific articles, book chapters, etc.) merged in one PDF file
  8. Up to two reference letters
  9. If you are disabled and covered by the rules in the Executive Order on Compensation for Disabled People in Business, etc., and you request priority based on this (the right to preferential access applies to EU citizens only), then please include a short describtion of the situation that makes you eligible for extra financial support.  

Application deadline:

The deadline for applications is 30 April 2022, 23:59 GMT +2.

We reserve the right not to consider material received after the deadline, and not to consider applications that do not live up to the abovementioned requirements.

The further process
After deadline, a eligibility check will be conducted by an unbiased expert assessor. You are notified, whether you will be passed for assessment.


Part of the International Alliance of Research Universities (IARU), and among Europe’s top-ranking universities, the University of Copenhagen promotes research and teaching of the highest international standard. Rich in tradition and modern in outlook, the University gives students and staff the opportunity to cultivate their talent in an ambitious and informal environment. An effective organisation – with good working conditions and a collaborative work culture – creates the ideal framework for a successful academic career.


Application deadline: 30-04-2022
Employment start: 01-09-2022
Working hours: Full time
Department/Location: Department of Food and Resource Economics

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