Business development and innovation: The firm perspective (MSB416)

Innovation is increasingly important for the development and competitiveness of firms and to delivering social as well as economic values for societies. Today’s most successful firms compete mainly through innovation, whether in the form of continuous development of new products, improvement of processes or organizational forms, or identification of new markets. In order to survive in the knowledge economy, firms need strategies for what kind of innovations to pursue and how to promote innovation by designing the necessary preconditions. In this context, knowledge and understanding of innovation is an important asset. Additionally, innovations increasingly should contribute with generating social and environmental values, addressing Grand Social Challenges. Through this course, students will develop a critical perspective of the firm strategies for the management of the innovation process. Through investigation of the innovation processes in the real private or public organization during the course, students will acquire the skills to assist in managing the firm innovation process in a responsible way. Students enrolled to this course have the opportunity to work closely with InGenious cases, alternatively to cases found in their own network.

InGenious is a collaborative project of the Stavanger University with local firms that is designed in collaboration with the European Consortium of Innovative Universities (ECIU). Thus, students will get opportunity to work in close collaboration with companies in the region of Stavanger.

Course description for study year 2022-2023


Course code




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Semester tution start


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The course will take up the following topics:
  • Disruptive innovation
  • Exploring innovation space
  • Innovation as a process
  • Sources of innovation
  • Dynamic capabilities
  • Innovation strategy
  • Lean for innovation
  • Innovation in public organizations
  • Sustainability-oriented innovation
  • Stage-gate process, agile model of innovation
  • Open innovation

Learning outcome


Through the course, students will develop a solid understanding of the scholarly debate on innovation in the management sciences, including:

  • The importance of innovation to firms
  • Identifying strategic capabilities
  • Sources and the process of innovation
  • Strategies for innovation
  • Sustainability-oriented innovation


Students will be able to: 

  • Present and critically assess different scholarly theories and hypotheses, as well as strategy and/or policy statements, related to innovation
  • Conduct an analysis of the drivers and/or outcomes of innovation in real firms
  • Discuss different strategies for promoting innovation in a firm
  • Contribute to the management of a firm’s innovation process

Required prerequisite knowledge



Form of assessment Weight Duration Marks Aid
Group (max. 3 students) or Individual Written Assignment 1/1 1 Semesters Letter grades

Coursework requirements

70% Compulsory attendance at lectures, Written work, Presentation, Comment or feedback on the presentation

There are four mandatory requirements for this course:

1. Participation on 70% of all lectures (regular and guest lectures) and seminars.

2. Students will prepare a seminar presentation (individual/group) in the middle and at the end of the course. This presentation is based on the assignment of analyzing how firm manages innovation process. Students must upload their presentation to Canvas at least three days before the seminar.

3. Students (individual/group) will act as a discussant for each other during the seminar. The discussant provides comment or feedback on the assigned presentation.

4 . Students will write a report based on their assignment. The report should consist of minimum 4800 words for individual work and 6000 words for group work.

Course teacher(s)

Study Program Director:

Yuko Onozaka

Method of work

The sessions will be organized as a combination of lectures, guest lectures, group discussions, and seminars. Before each session, students are expected to go through the required literature or video materials. Active participation during class sessions is expected. Between sessions, students should work independently with assignments or other deliverables agreed with the lecturers. It is desirable that students work together in groups of 2 or 3 for the assignment. The assignment is based on practicing and applying innovation tools in real-life situations. Based on this assignment, students will present their work in the middle and at the end of the course. The final deliverable will be a written report at the end of the course. Students will have the opportunity to submit a draft report to get feedback prior to the final submission.

Expected workload: 250-300 hours

Lectures: 60 hours

Self-study: 100 hours

Assignments - including contact with firms: 120 hours

Overlapping courses

Course Reduction (SP)
Strategies for Innovation Management (MØA416_1) 10

Open for

The course is open to all Master's students within the University of Stavanger.

Course assessment

Students will have the opportunity to give feedback on the course first in an early dialogue, and then in a written course evaluation at the end of the course.


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