A Researcher’s Journey at Laurea Living Labs
Author: Mika Alastalo (LAUREA)
The Laurea University of Applied Sciences was glad to host a researcher’s visit to its research infrastructure through the VITALISE project’s Transnational Access Programme. The activity brought benefits to both the participants and the institution and deepened the international cross border cooperation for leveraging research and innovation.
Transnational Access Programme in Laurea
In April-May 2023, a visiting researcher from the University of Bologna, had the opportunity to integrate into Laurea’s Living Lab activities and co-creation initiatives. Additionally, the researcher aimed to gain insights into Laurea’s approach to service user involvement in various projects. The ultimate goal was to leverage this knowledge and experience to enhance research, development, and innovation (RDI) efforts at their home institution and contribute to future international projects.
During visiting researcher’s stay, a variety of research methods were employed to achieve these objectives. Interviews were conducted with over 20 subject matter experts, comprising project specialists, digital living lab experts, experts by experience, and pedagogical experts. In addition to these interviews, the researcher observed activities within Laurea’s ecosystem, involving more than 50 participants.
One noteworthy activity involved a field trip dedicated to testing robotics-based solutions in the context of care services. This hands-on experience provided valuable insights
into the practical application of technology in real-world scenarios and service user involvement.
Overall, the visit not only enriched the visiting researcher’s expertise but also fostered the exchange of ideas and the potential for future international collaboration. Collaboration already takes place in the form of an e-health conference. The visit exemplified the spirit of knowledge-sharing and cross-border cooperation, which are essential components of advancing research and innovation in today’s interconnected world.
Exploring Laurea Living Labs
During the transnational access period, the visiting researcher immersed in Laurea’s diverse Living Lab environments, such as the Simulated Hospital, Physical Activity Living Lab, and Digital Living Lab. Laurea’s VITALISE project experts played a crucial role in facilitating the researcher’s journey by identifying suitable interview subjects, research activities, and connecting with relevant experts.