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Its21 – 4th conference on interdisciplinary teamwork skills

June 20th – 21st in Trondheim

A growing need for skills in interdisciplinary collaboration and innovation is a clear trend in today’s society and work life. Product and service innovation is becoming increasingly important, and interdisciplinary teams that solve complex problems are essential for successful innovation. The core questions are then how to build such teams and enable them to work well inside and outside the organization, how to manage such teams, and what methods the teams should use for innovation. For the universities that educate students for such workplaces, the question becomes what kind of expertise the students need to be able to contribute in interdisciplinary teams and what skills they need to join and create such teams in workplaces that are unfamiliar with this way of working. Together, universities and workplaces face the challenge: how to successfully develop and then make the most of interdisciplinary teamwork skills?

The main objective of the conference is to create a meeting place where researchers and practitioners from universities and workplaces can discuss key issues related to how skills in interdisciplinary teamwork and innovation can be developed. The conference aims to contribute to both clarification of expectations and exchange of best practices, and will consist of inspiring keynotes, parallel sessions and practical workshops.


 The program will consist of different types of sessions including inspiring keynotes, parallel sessions and practical workshops. The overall aim is to stimulate to activity and discussions. More information about the details in the program will follow soon.

The conference welcomes contributions in the form of oral or poster presentations on topics related to interdisciplinary teamwork skills, in workplaces or in higher education. Read more about how to contribute


The conference is part of a Nordic collaboration working on developing students’ group work in interdisciplinary teams. The network was established by Experts in teamwork (EiT) at NTNU, one of the partners in the ENgage centre. Read more about EiT and the network here. Read more here.

Practical Information

The conference will take place on Gløshaugen campus, NTNU. More information will follow soon.

Important dates

·     Submission starts: når kan systemet ta imot?

·     Submission ends: March 15 2018

·     Review results announced: April 15 2018

·     Registration starts: February 1 2018

·     Early bird ends: May 1 2018

·     Conference dates: June 20-21 2018 in Trondheim

How to get there?

The conference welcomes contributions in the form of oral or poster presentations on topics related to interdisciplinary teamwork skills, in workplaces or in higher education. The topics of interest include, but are not restricted to:

·     Interdisciplinary teams in different settings

·     Collaborative learning and group work in higher education, e.g. facilitation of groups, student learning, student assessement, group assignment and group dynamics.

·     Skal ha inn evt noen flere punkter dersom jeg får innspill fra Engage-gjengen (se target audience)

Oral presentations

The oral presentation can be either research projects or experience report. An experience report is a firsthand description of challenges faced, approaches taken, observations and reflections, including thought-provoking ideas. The proposal should describe in more detail your experience related to teaching student groups or working in or with interdisciplinary teams in other settings.

 Poster presentations

The poster can address new research ideas, research that is in an early state, teaching or worklife experiences, capable to trigger discussions and collaborations, to get feedback or validate work in different states. Accepted posters will be exhibited during the whole conference and presented during the conference poster session. The poster format is A0 (841mm x 1189mm)


The abstracts for both presentation and poster should not exceed 400 words.

All submissions will be evaluated by at least two members of the program committee, mostly based on relevance to the conference theme, potential for stimulating discussion, and presentation quality.


The Nordic EiT-network

The network’s main objective is to train students in utilizing their academic competence in interdisciplinary settings, nationally and internationally, in order to reach enhanced project outputs and contribute to solving complex problems. This is achieved by focusing on teamwork skills, i.e. increasing the students´ awareness of how they contribute as collaborative members in a team. The development of such social skills is important both for their future workplaces and in life. By training the students´ interpersonal collaborative skills, we believe, the training may also facilitate innovative processes.

The partner institutions bring various experiences to the network. While some emphasize cooperation skills, others are particularly strong on innovative processes. The network meetings have given participants “hands on” practical experience as well as theoretical aspects. This has contributed to a deeper understanding and a greater commitment among the participants, and established a platform for long-term cooperation.

NTNU, represented by the Section for Experts in teamwork (EiT), is the coordinating institution in the network.

What is EiT?

Experts in teamwork (EiT) is a compulsory course in which students apply their academic competence in interdisciplinary project work to learn collaborative skills that can be transferred to the work place. Students work in teams with participants from diverse programmes of study. Relevant problem areas from civic and working life form the basis for teamwork, and the results achieved by the teams are used to benefit internal and external partners. Currently, 2300 students take the course annually, taught by 85 teaching staff members and 160 learning assistants (students) from all disciplines and professions.

The section for EiT is located at the Department of Industrial Economics and Technology Management (IØT). However, since EiT is part of most master programmes at NTNU, the section for EiT collaborates across all faculties at the university. It is responsible for the professional foundation for facilitation as a core pedagogical method for learning collaborative skills, and also for training academic staff and learning assistants.

The section for EiT is also partner in Centre for Engaged Education through Entrepreneurship (ENgage). The centre is awarded the status as Centre for Excellence in Education (SFU) by NOKUT (the Norwegian Agency for Quality Assurance in Education).

Target audience

This conference welcomes staff and students from higher education institutions and practitioners and researchers from private and public sectors. It encourages attendance and presentations from those with particular interest in

·     Interdisciplinary teams

·     Collaborative learning and group work in higher education