Sylvia Schwaag Serger

Sylvia Schwaag Serger

Professor, directly appointed

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Personal profile


I have spent 20 years designing, implementing and studying research and innovation policy particularly in Europe and China but also international S&T relations. Recently, my focus has been on understanding and advising on transformative change and policymaking with a focus on Agenda 2030. My research is interdisciplinary (combining public policy, political science and economic history) and comparative, and draws upon long-standing policy experience in the Nordic countries, Germany and at EU level. In addition, I study the interaction and interface between science and policymaking.


I advise numerous governments and the European Commission on research and innovation policy, on China and on internationalization. I have worked with the OECD as external expert on the Innovation Reviews of China, Norway, Finland, Germany and South Korea. I have been involved in 4 EU expert groups of which I have chaired 2. I'm frequently invited to give lectures to policymakers.

Societal impact

I was appointed by the Swedish government to mitigate the effects of Ericsson's layoffs in Sweden in 2016. I constantly seek to interact with policymakers, companies and other stakeholders to get insights and enhance the societal impact of my work. I also study and have written about the interaction and interface between policymaking and science and how to improve the relations.


I frequently give lectures to policymakers. My university teaching has focused on China and on research and innovation policy. Among other things, I have taught courses on the Chinese economy at Lund University, on research and innovation policy at Tsinghua University and to government officials in Morocco. I have supervised PhD students and Masters students. I have taken courses on university pedagogy and meet the formal requirements for teaching at Lund University.

As Deputy Vice Chancellor at Lund University I was responsible for teaching (part. undergraduate and graduate education). In that position, I promoted interdisciplinary education (liberal arts) and educating students for handling real world complexity.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 8 - Decent Work and Economic Growth
  • SDG 9 - Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure
  • SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities
  • SDG 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities

UKÄ subject classification

  • Economic History


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Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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