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Eu-SPRI Winter School 2022


The European Forum for Studies of Policies for Research and Innovation, Eu-SPRI Forum, holds a series of winter and summer schools targeted at state-of-the-art training for PhD candidates. This series focuses on the study of innovation policy and supporting disciplines. It concentrates on current research and debates on innovation studies and associated fields, with emphasis on policy and pressing societal challenges.

CIRCLE, Lund University will host the third session of this series on the theme of Geography of Innovation. 

Regional competitiveness and regional inequalities are major themes in the policy debate and often presented as two sides of a coin. Knowledge-based activities and innovation drive the economy in core areas, while the periphery lags behind. This dichotomy ignores the variegated nature of innovation and the linkages between places, the core and periphery, the global north and the south. The Eu-SPRI Winter School in Lund on Geography of Innovation will provide a more nuanced picture. This will help participants to study innovation in different geographical contexts, recognize the linkages between local and global innovation processes, understand how innovation contributes to structural change, and the role of policy at local, national and international levels.

Course objectives

This winter school seeks to familiarise participants with state-of-the-art scientific and policy debates about the Geography of Innovation and its associated practices. Through lectures and discussions, the school participants will explore theoretical and conceptual underpinnings of the geography of innovation as well as implications for regional innovation and development policy at different levels. 

The course will enable participants to: 

  • Critically examine the framing of innovation in different streams of literature and related to different contextual conditions;
  • Recognise to what extent, why and how innovation influences regional competitiveness and inclusive development in different contexts;
  • Consider the global embeddedness of local innovation processes;
  • Identify place-based characteristics and, against this backdrop, assess and evaluate regional development and innovation policy;
  • Discuss the role of innovation in promoting structural change in different types of regions;
  • Develop cutting-edge scientific contributions and research proposals


Each day of the conference will be dedicated to a specific topic. The first day starts with a discussion about the variegated nature of innovation in different geographic contexts. The second day is devoted to the theme of sustainability and the geography of innovation. The third day pivots around innovation policy, including an interactive policy workshop involving practitioners. The fourth day focuses on social innovation and the geographies of innovation in the Global South. The fifth day addresses the topics of firms, industries, and regional trajectories.  

Speakers CIRCLE, Lund University

Ester Barinaga, Claudio Fassio, Lea Fünfschilling, Markus Grillitsch, Mart Laatsit, Magnus Nilsson, Rhiannon Pugh, Josephine Rekers, Torben Schubert, Lena Trojer, Maria Tsouri

Guest Speakers

Erik Arnold (Technopolis Group), Ron Boschma (University of Utrecht), Lars Coenen (Högskolan på Vestlandet), Keld Laursen (Copenhagen Business School), Rasmus Lema (Aalborg University), Pedro Marques (INGENIO)

Target audience and selection

The school will consider applications from PhD candidates, early career researchers, innovation policy professionals from public agencies, research institutes and consultancies, and experienced social entrepreneurs.

Work forms and planning 

The course has a duration of 5 days, and combines lectures, discussions, workshops and informal networking. Participants receive a certificate of participation in the course.

In addition, there is the possibility of an evaluated hand-in assignment, which corresponds to approximately 3-weeks of work. Including the assignment, the course corresponds to 4 weeks of full-time work and may be considered for ECTS credits by the respective universities, in which the participants are enrolled.


The school will be hosted at CIRCLE, Lund University, Sweden. This venue is located close to the city centre.


Accommodation is organised by CIRCLE, but all participants should make their travel arrangements independently.

Participants from EU-SPRI member organisations have fee waivers covering the costs for the course, accommodation, and catering. Participants from other instructions are subject to a 500€ fee to cover these costs. 

How to apply

Candidates should submit:

  • A brief CV (2 pages). 
  • A motivation letter (max 200 words)
  • A recommendation letter (max 200 words), for PhD students from the supervisor is preferred. 
  • An extended abstract (max 1000 words) of the paper or chapter to submit for the PhD school, and receive feedback on. This can be a fairly complete version or an earlier stage work in process. 

Materials to be sent to

Applications will be evaluated on three criteria:

  • Demonstrable research/professional and personal commitment 
  • (motivation letter and CV)
  • Likelihood the participant will benefit from the training (motivation letter and extended abstract)
  • Excellent track-record (CV and recommendation letter)

Considering that a balanced and diverse group would foster a better learning environment, the committee will take diversity into account when selecting participants. The dimensions of gender, nationality and professional background will be considered. 

For more information on the program, please contact 

Useful information

Location: Lund, Sweden

Date: February 7-11, 2022

Organisers: CIRCLE at Lund University

Maximum Participants: 20

Contact: Rhiannon Pugh at


Important dates

November 15, 2021: Last day for application

December 15, 2021: Applicants contacted, final program confirmed

December 31, 2021: Deadline for registration

February 7, 2022: First day of the school

February 11, 2022: Last day of the school