Norwegian version

R&DI strategy at TKD

Research, Development and Innovation strategy at The Faculty of Technology, Art and Design, OsloMet – Oslo Metropolitan University.

2020–2024

Faculty of Technology, Art and Design

The Faculty of Technology, Art and Design (TKD) is a forward leaning academic environment that delivers knowledge aimed at solving societal challenges.

The Faculty’s staff conduct research, teach and engage in development and innovation within a broad spectrum of areas and subjects, such as technology and engineering, natural science, digitalisation, and art and design.

The faculty is a broad, interdisciplinary research community with an inclusive and innovative culture.

The faculty has high ambitions for growth and wishes to develop its research at the research frontier and to world class in selected areas.

As main means for achieving these ambitions, we have a proactive attitude towards applying for external funding through the EU and the Research Council of Norway. However, we also aim to work in a structured way to develop partnerships and collaborations with private and public organisations.

The faculty wishes to pursue national and international collaborations with relevant partners in connection with large-scale initiatives and concrete project applications.

At the same time, the faculty wishes to be a driving force for further developing cooperation across OsloMet, including with Simula Metropolitan Center for Digital Engineering (SimulaMet).

Basis for the strategy

The faculty’s strategy is based on OsloMet’s Strategy 2024 and on an ambition to contribute to the achievement of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (un.org).

The point of departure is the Research Council strategy for the period 2020–2024 and the second pillar of Horizon Europe: ‘Global Challenges and European Industrial Competitiveness’.

The strategy is based on the fundamental principle of academic freedom and is the result of a broad involvement process carried out from autumn 2019 until summer 2020.

While the strategy has a long-term focus, the intention is that, over time, there will be room for dynamic development of focus areas, topics and methods as assumptions change.

The strategy is based on the faculty’s subject areas within technology, digitalisation, art and design, its research, teaching and innovation activities and on the Sustainable Development Goals.

By its nature, research is driven by individuals that the faculty wishes to support. The faculty also aims to provide research-based teaching.

Even though the R&DI strategy is thematically structured, it is a fundamental condition for the strategy that the faculty’s disciplines and teaching fields will continue to be prioritised.

The ambition is that the faculty’s academic environments will be given an opportunity to further develop their disciplines, while at the same being able to link them to the overall thematic focus areas.

In addition, we wish to focus our efforts and resources on defined, broader initiatives. We want to emphasize six strategic and thematic areas that will be the focus areas for the faculty’s research, development and innovation collaboration during the period 2020–2024. The strategy is also structured around five areas of ambitions.

Strategic thematic areas

The faculty’s strategic, thematic areas are centred on three context-specific and two discipline-oriented areas, and one broad interdisciplinary focus area.

Within these different areas, the faculty wishes to support unique topics that complement other Norwegian universities’ focus areas, and to further develop thematic initiatives and portfolios of concrete research projects.

The three context-specific areas – 1 smart cities, constructions and buildings, 2 urban ocean, and 3 intelligent health – focus on the application of technology relating to societal challenges in urban lives.

The two discipline-oriented themes will be applicable across all the contextual areas in addition to other research areas at OsloMet, including artificial intelligence and universal and user-oriented design.

Within each of these five areas, the faculty aims to develop expert environments with ambitions to establish centres of excellence in accordance with OsloMet’s strategy of developing three to five academic environments characterised by excellence.

In addition to these areas, the faculty is developing an overarching interdisciplinary initiative within innovation for sustainability. The thematic areas are shown in Figure 1 and are described below.

Illustration showing the thematic areas for R&DI at the Faculty of Technology, Art and Design (TKD): These are the research contextual areas of smart cities, urban seas and intelligent health. There are also the discipline-oriented themes of innovation for sustainability, user-driven and universal design, and artificial intelligence.

Figure 1: Thematic areas for R&DI at TKD

Each area will be described in more detail on dedicated web pages, including detailed activities, with the aim of promoting and highlighting the faculty’s research.

Research-contextual topics

Smart cities

Technology that underpins urban development is important if many of the UN Sustainable Development Goals are to be achieved. By developing a leading research environment in sustainable smart cities, mobility, construction, buildings and aesthetics, we will contribute to OsloMet's strategy of being an urban university. The faculty’s involvement in Construction City (www.constructioncity.no), the development of a laboratory for smart cities and collaboration with several universities abroad, in addition to other selected activities, will support this initiative.

Urban ocean

Marine research and data on our oceans are important in order to analyse and ensure good marine resource management in the future and to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.

The area of Urban ocean entails seeing the connection between ocean and marine resources and urban lives and development. The intention behind this thematic area is to build a bridge between research, development, innovation, teaching and society, and to develop OsloMet’s presence in Oslo’s harbour area and the Oslofjord. By developing technology that collects data, the faculty will contribute to generating knowledge about the oceans, water and water resources.

Intelligent health

Health and welfare are key areas if we are to develop sustainable societies. Intelligent health comprises R&DI activity that will develop and use technology that can ensure good lives and good health. Intelligent health includes individually adapted diagnosis and treatment using, for example, sensors and monitoring, analyses based on big data and artificial intelligence and technology-based interventions. The faculty is cooperating with the Faculty of Health Sciences in developing a leading national research area within intelligent health solutions.

Discipline-oriented topics

Artificial Intelligence (AI)

Artificial intelligence is essential for the education, research and professions of the future, and it will form the basis for a lot of the research we do at the faculty and at OsloMet. Artificial intelligence is broadly defined in an inclusive manner at the faculty. It covers areas that range from machine learning to the application of artificial intelligence in areas such as health, urban development and marine research, as well as the ethical foundation of AI research. Our research in this area is based on a broad spectrum of methods within AI, and it encompasses both basic research, including Quantum Computing, and applied research. This topic is attached to and will be developed from the AI Laboratory at OsloMet, which is based on a collaboration with SimulaMet.

Universal and user-oriented design

Universal design is an ambitious and strong research field with extensive development and innovation activities at the faculty. This area includes user-driven and sustainable design relating to ICT, products, services, materiality, cultural expressions and experiences, as well as research on human-computer interaction. Our ambition is to develop a centre of excellence in this area.

Interdisciplinary focus

Innovation for sustainability

The faculty is unique in the interdisciplinary expertise it has at its disposal. The academic environment in sustainable culture, education and innovation gives us a critical and humanistic gateway to finding future solutions to major societal challenges. The faculty’s goal is to use our disciplinary and research expertise in art, culture and design in cooperation with leading technology to develop sustainable urban societies. Makerspace and our involvement in Arena Oslo are examples of this. The faculty will endeavour to establish a PhD programme to further develop research in this field.

Ambitions

The faculty’s ambition is to develop original, ethical, sustainable and applied knowledge of high quality, which is at the forefront of European and international research in selected areas. Our ambitions are to:

  1. establish a centre of excellence for research or research-driven innovation.
  2. increase the total research time at the faculty by 40% from the beginning of 2020 to the end of 2024.
  3. secure a total of NOK 200 million in external funding during the period 1 January 2020 to year-end 2024.

Our ambitions are based on five areas and our intention is to develop sustainable research in accordance with our values: learning, innovative and diverse.

These five areas are shown in Figure 2: Ethics, resources, publications and dissemination, projects and funding, and «impact and innovation». The areas include details that will make it possible to measure the faculty’s ability to achieve its overarching ambitions. More specific ambitions and key initiatives in each of these areas are outlined below.

The figure shows that the ambitions of TKD's RDI are based on the five areas of ethics, resources, publications and dissemination, projects and financing, as well as «impact and innovation».

Figure 2: Specific research ambitions at the faculty

Ethics

Being a learning, innovative and diverse organisation with high ethical standards and with a focus on sustainability is the core of the faculty’s research culture.

Ambitions:

Methods:

Resources

The faculty will recruit promising researchers internationally within three main categories: (1) outstanding PhD candidates, (2) outstanding post-doctoral candidates and (3) very promising associate professors who will be able to quality as professors within three to six years.

The faculty will establish a research environment and culture in which researchers thrive and become the best versions of themselves. This entails ambitions for growth, extensive autonomy, high quality and an open interdisciplinary environment with a knowledgeable and proactive research administration that supports the development of research projects and activities.

Ambitions:

Methods:

Publication and dissemination

The faculty values publication, dissemination and artistic development work with the objective of openly developing and communicating outstanding research, development and innovation, The faculty encourages broad communication, but wants to ensure that our researchers use relevant, recognised publication channels where expedient.
Ambitions:

Methods:

Projects and funding

External funding is essential if the faculty is to develop as an excellent research environment, evolve and develop its research activity, and to help achieve OsloMet’s vision.

We are dependent on researchers who have the willingness and ability to win funding and manage projects.

A professional and efficient administration is a key resource in this respect, and seamless and professional cooperation between researchers and the administration is essential.

Ambitions:

Methods:

Sustainable impact and innovation

The faculty will create solutions that benefit society and influence societal development in a more sustainable direction.

Ambitions:

Methods: