Financial sources

The Bank of Sweden Tercentenary Fund

The Swedish Foundation for Strategic Research

The Swedish Foundation for International Cooperation in Research and Higher Education


The project was carried out at the Swedish Institute for Studies in Education and Research, SISTER. It was completed in May 2009
Front page of 'Gränslös forskning'

The internationalisation of Swedish research

The Swedish public-sector research system is rapidly becoming more international. The focus of this study was on the motives for different actors and conflicts between them over international collaboration and international work. There is a wide range of motives: for the researchers it may be access to data, competence or resources; for the government economic, social or political benefits, international position; and for the universities prestige, income and recruitment of staff.

The Swedish research system is strongly internationalised, particularly in sciences, medicine and engineering. A continued increase of collaboration with foreign research groups can be expected, not least within the context of European funding. However, the Swedish public research funding system is not well adapted to this development.

The research has been carried out through a series case studies with interviews with selected research groups and analysis of documentation from the research groups. Further documentation from the government, certain research funding agencies and authorities as well as universities and polytechnics has been used. Based on this analysis some requirements and policy-related issues for future Swedish research policy with regard to internationalisation of research have been discussed.

The project has been reported in a Swedish monograph (Olle Edqvist, Gränslös forskning, Stockholm: Nya Doxa, 2009) and in a couple of reports on different parts of the study.