- I got a little teary-eyed when I was told we were winners, says Geir Hanssen. He is the research director for a small but strong group that works closely with Norwegian and foreign companies.
The group “Digital Process Innovation” researches agile development and agile organizations, effective teamwork, digital transformation, hybrid workday, and other topics that are important for software companies.
What they find out helps leaders make good decisions, and their results are highly valued by both the media and businesses in the private and public sectors.
Microsoft, IBM, and Peking University among previous winners
Now they receive honor and recognition outside Norway’s borders as well, through the internationally recognized “IEEE TCSE Synergy Award 2023”.
It is awarded by the IEEE Computer Society - the world’s largest membership organization for computer science and technology, with more than 375,000 members worldwide.
The prize is awarded to SINTEF researchers, among other things, for their efforts to work closely with industry and business.
- This is precisely what we at SINTEF are so good at. To achieve applied research, that is, research that someone can use right away. That our little group of ten researchers now receives recognition for this, in the company of previous winners such as Microsoft Research, IBM Toronto, and Peking University, is simply very big, says Hanssen with a smile.
The visible proof of the prize will be awarded on May 18th during The International Conference on Software Engineering (ICSE), which is held in Melbourne, Australia this year.
– The room where the prize is awarded is Oslo Spektrum-sized. I don’t know if it will be full, but regardless, it will be the largest audience I’ve ever stood in front of, says a travel-ready Hanssen.
Storebrand: - Uses research findings to improve at all levels
The research is done in collaboration with the companies, which helps to solve concrete challenges in people’s everyday work.
For example, we have helped Spotify build strong professional communities. We have then used the findings from there and the same recipe for success at Knowit, DNV, and Storebrand.
Storebrand confirms the value of being on the same team as the now award-winning researchers.
- We use more and more data and insight in our organizational work, and research collaboration may give us the biggest gold here. Research findings are used to improve at all levels in the company. An example is how we handled the transition to the hybrid workday, says Tove Selnes, who is the group director for HR at Storebrand.
Nothing beats research-based decisions
SINTEF’s Geir Hanssen believes that even more business leaders will open their eyes to collaboration with researchers in the years to come.
- There has never been a greater need for research-based decisions in business and the public sector than there is now, because the world is only becoming more and more complex and changes are happening at a faster pace. There is nothing that beats research-based decisions when you are going to lead a business in the right direction, he says and gives an example:
- It’s a bit like when you go to the doctor. Then you hope your doctor makes decisions based on the latest research results, instead of just going for gut feeling or old habit. That’s how it is in business too. You want the boss to make decisions based on knowledge and research.
Reasoning and previous winners
This is what the committee writes:
«The committee believes that SINTEF’s research group Digital Process Innovation from Trondheim, Norway, has had significant impact in the more than 23 years since the group was formed in 1999, by assisting both private and public enterprises, nationally and internationally. The research has focused on evidence-based process improvement and agile methods, which have a great impact on both research and practice.»
These are some previous recipients of the same award:
- 2020 - Peking University – Software Engineering Institute (PKU-SEI)
- 2019 - Software Center – Chalmers University
- 2018 - LERO, Ireland
- 2017 - IBM Toronto Lab
- 2016 - Microsoft Research