08 November 2019

Two researchers at IEI – Daniel Kindström och Christian Kowalkowski – are highly placed in a list of the most published and cited researchers in Sweden, compiled by Fokus magazine. “It’s a great honour, and very gratifying.”

Daniel Kindström and Christian Kowalkowski.Daniel Kindström and Christian Kowalkowski. Photo credit: Mikael Sönne

"A complete surprise"

Swedish magazine Fokus has compiled a list of the 100 most published and cited researchers in Sweden in several fields such as the humanities, environmental science, medicine, and technology. The ranking is determined by the number of articles published and the number of citations in 20,000 international scientific journals.

Professor Daniel Kindström and Professor Christian Kowalkowski are both at IEI, working on, among other things, proactive market strategies and the servitisation of industry. They are placed at 12th and 18th, respectively, in the list of researchers in the social sciences.

“It’s a great honour, and a complete surprise. I only found out about it when a colleague who is also on the list told me about it”, says Christian Kowalkowski.

Congratulations! Why are you ranked so highly in the list?

“We have done a lot of work together and published articles with the results. Innovation in business models in general, and servitisation in particular, are topics that are highly relevant just now, both academically and practically. The field is becoming evermore important and we have been leaders for most of the past 20 years. And in recent years, digitisation has become increasingly important. Further, we are privileged to work with companies that are market-leaders, and with prominent researchers from all over the world”, says Christian Kowalkowski.

Daniel Kindström brings up some other factors: “Both of us have been active in several types of forum, such as academic conferences and workshops. An indirect factor that I believe to be important is that our research projects are close to the industries and thus are highly relevant, with a large potential for utilisation.”

What is the significance of a ranking list like this?

“Well, part of it is the recognition for the work we do and our passion for it. It’s always an honour when other researchers value the work one does, and find it interesting”, says Christian Kowalkowski.

Is this a good way of measuring scientific quality – counting publications and citations?

“You can say that it’s one way of doing it. It’s an internationally established measure that shows the extent to which your research is used by the scientific community and its significance. It’s an important measure”, they reply.

“But there can be big differences between research fields. If you publish articles about Swedish jurisprudence and write in Swedish, well, naturally it’s more difficult to be cited in international journals than if you work in a more global research area, even if the research is just as innovative and interesting. And this measure doesn’t say very much about the third task of universities: collaboration and translation into practical use. This is why we both write textbooks and apply our research in undergraduate education, and we reach out to the business world through other types of publication and activity.”

The summary covers the past few years. What are you working on at the moment?

“I have recently concluded a project financed by Riksbankens jubileumsfond looking at servitisation and digitally driven change in, among other things, the maritime industry. I’m now working on an EU and Vinnova project on service-based business models in the motor industry, where a lot is happening at the moment. I’m also somewhat involved in a project with the Swedish Foundation for Strategic Environmental Research REES on servitisation and a connection with the circular economy”, says Christian Kowalkowski.

Daniel Kindström describes his current projects: “I’m working with something known as proactive market strategy, which is developing rapidly at the moment. In the project, we consider how companies can get involved and help to shape both existing and new markets in different ways. And we are just finishing a regionally oriented project known as Tillväxtledarskap, which considers how small and medium enterprises can create and lead sustainable growth. We are holding a final conference for the project on 19 November.”