Multiple unknowns, infinite possibilities. Photo: Colourbox

An EU funded project will train a new researcher generation to cope with newness in a changing world

The 4.3 million-euro, EU-funded “Legitimation of Newness and Its Impact on EU Agenda for Change” (LNETN) project will enable 15 early stage researchers (ESRs) to innovate and contribute to European economic, social, political and technological growth.

In today’s society of rapid change with complex, large scale new challenges to economic, social and political development, there is an urgent need for new perspectives, theories, approaches and methods to address how best to interpret and respond to these changes – or ‘newness’. According to Romeo V. Turcan, Professor at Aalborg University Business School and LNETN project coordinator, ‘newness’ is on everyone’s agenda these days, nationally, regionally, internationally, and globally.

- Newness is defined, not exhaustively, as new ventures, business ideas, products, technology, industry or sector, policy, forms of organizing, categories, and organization practices. Recent trends in Europe, US, and globally have demonstrated that newness has a lot of innovate power, but in the presence of uncertainty and ignorance most of the time this innovative power is with a negative sign, with a negative social impact.  Brexit, protectionism, anti-globalism, mass migration, extremism, terrorism, nationalism and fake news are just handful examples of such potential innovating powers. The central thesis of LNETN is that the emergence of newness shall be underpinned by legitimacy building alongside other enabling factors and actions, and the overall objective is to address how to best interpret and respond to newness, says Romeo V. Turcan.

A unique research and training network

The LNETN project sets up a unique, innovative, quadruple-i - inter-disciplinary, inter-sectoral, inter-technology, and international - research and training network within social sciences and economics, with applications in science, engineering, technology, health and humanities to provide high quality quadruple-i transferable knowledge, skills and broad vision.

During this project, the researchers will examine how different industries, companies, cultures manage to adapt to rapidly changing situations.

- They will be trained in legitimation of newness and theory building focusing on interpretation and understanding of new complex phenomena within different fields. When the project is finalized, the ESRs will be leading experts in their fields at the forefront of scientific challenges. They will have gained unique skills which will increase their employability both in and outside academia, enabling them to transform effective decision making and policy implementation and contribute to economic development, says Romeo V. Turcan.


  • LNETN beneficiaries are: Aalborg University Business School, Aalborg University, Denmark; Adam Smith Business School, University of Glasgow, Scotland; Martti Ahtisaari Institute, University of Oulu, Finland; School of Business, Engineering, and Science, Halmstad University, Sweden.
  • LNETN partners are: Bittumm Wireless, Finland; FinTech Scotland, Scotland; Getinge Infection Control, Sweden; New Factory, Finland; Nokia, Finland; NOVI, Denmark; Scottish EDGE, Scotland; Softiron LTD, USA; The Shaftesbury Partnership Ltd, UK; University of Rhode Island, USA.
  • External evaluation and quality assurance is provided by two external quality auditors: Dr Andy Lowe, Grounded Theory Institute in California, USA; and Prof John E. Reilly, Higher Education Consultant, University of Kent, UK.
  • AAU is the main applicant and lead partner of the LNETN project. LNETN project coordinator is Professor Romeo V. Turcan.
  • LNETN, a four-year project with a total budget of €4,350,760, started is activities on January 1, 2020. To learn more about LNETN, please visit
  • LNETN, a research programme in legitimation of newness and theory building, is part of a quadruple-i collaborative research network, Theory Building Research Programme (TBRP). To learn more about TBRP, please visit
  • To join the official launch of the LNETN project February 24 via Zoom, please visit
  • Photo: Colourbox


Professor Romeo V. Turcan, Aalborg University Business School, Aalborg University, phone: +45 99408315,

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