Healthcare Innovation —The Epital: A Living Lab in the Intersection Between the Informal and Formal Structures

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Louise Hesseldal, Lars Kayser

This study explores an alternative healthcare innovation project in its making using ethnographic research methods. The project is a confined space — a living lab — that cannot fully be described or explained in the same way we normally understand set-ups for healthcare innovation. By creating its own space, in the intersection between formal and informal structures, it draws our attention to a new way of organizing healthcare innovation.
Taking an ethnographic research approach, it is suggested how a concept of a bubble can be used to describe the nature of the living lab as a partial and flexible object that constitutes multiple future possibilities. The concept of the bubble challenges the notion of the living lab as a cheese bell, which is the term used by the field participants, inspired by Clayton Christensen. Bringing in theoretical points from Bruno Latour regarding laboratories, this study explores the materiality of the laboratory and its political nature.
The study contributes to the debate on innovation in healthcare and especially fuses to the discussion of how to organize healthcare innovation. It argues that we need to pay attention to new kinds ofliving labs — like the one introduced in this study.
Original languageEnglish
JournalQualitative Sociology Review
Issue number2
Pages (from-to)60-80
Number of pages21
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2016

ID: 172135811