Apps & Os project studied the possibilities of integrating service and application innovations that spring up as part of campus activities (e.g. via courses and study projects) with the resources and ideas of the wider campus community; students in the different campuses, local community, Staff, startups, etc.


University  campus areas and study activities are natural places for ideas to be born and tested, but at the moment these activities are not well connected (At least this is the case in our own University) and it is difficult to build on the work of others or even find collaborators. Apps & Os  focused on grass-root level by supporting teaching and learning activities that supported mobile development efforts across Aalto. Doing this work allowed us the opportunity to study the dynamics of open, collaborative, experimental distributed design and development projects. The main aim was to support those who have cool “Apps” and are motivated by starting an own business (start up), but also those who are doing “Other stuff” (Os). By “other stuff”  we mean work that is more experimental in character, or that aims at supporting marginal or community oriented services (e.g. third sector, NGOs, etc).


  • Kimmo Karhu, Department of Computer Science and Engineering (SCI)
  • Andrea Botero, Department of Media (ARTS)
  • Sami Vihavainen, Helsinki Institute for Information Technology (HIIT)

In all project related matters, the main contact is researcher Kimmo Karhu (kimmo.karhu@aalto.fi).

Apps & Os was partly funded by Aalto Service Factory (ASF) and Aalto Multidisciplinary Institute of Digitalisation and Energy (MIDE) we thank them for their support

Publications / Results

Aalto University Mobile App Guide: A collection of resources for alto specific mobile development initiatives (available here). Done in cooperation with Aalto IT services and Aalto Communications

Seppälä, Karhu (2013) Jollan, Nokian ja Suomen strategiat mobiilitoimialan nykymurroksessa” published at a quarterly review “Talous & Yhteiskunta,4/2013” by The Labour Institute for Economic Research

Karhu, Botero, Vihavainen (27.10.13) “Apps & Os – identifying the challenges and opportunities of open innovation ecosystems” Poster at Aalto Research-Day.

Karhu, K., Tang, T., & Hämäläinen, M. (2013). Analyzing competitive and collaborative differences among mobile ecosystems using abstracted strategy networks. Telematics and Informatics. Available: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.tele.2013.09.003.

Mannonen, P., Karhu, K., Heiskala, M. An Approach for Understanding Personal Mobile Ecosystem in Everyday Context. In: Effective, Agile and Trusted eServices Co-Creation. Proceedings of the 15th International Conference on Electronic Commerce ICEC 2013.

Vihavainen, S., Karhu, K., Botero, A. Connecting stakeholders through context logging. In: Proceedings of the 15th International Conference on Human-computer Interaction with Mobile Devices and Services. pp. 504–509. 2013.

Marttila, S., & Botero, A. (2013). The “Openness.Turn” in Co-Design…From Usability, Sociability and Designability Towards.Openness. In Co-create 2013, the boundary-crosing conference and Co-design in Innovation (pp. 99–110). Espoo, Finland: Aalto University.

In Addition 2 related doctoral dissertation were completed:

  • Expanding Design Space(s) Design in communal endeavours. Andrea Botero (20.09.2013)
  •  Field Studies on User Experience of Automation in Context-Aware Social Media. Sami Vihavainen (4.10.2013)

Previous related work by members of the team

Karhu, K., Botero, A., Vihavainen, S., Tang, T., Hämäläinen, M. A Digital Ecosystem for Co-Creating Business with PeopleJournal of Service Science and Management. Scientific Research Publishing, Inc. USA. 2011.

Botero A., Karhu K., & Vihavainen S., Exploring the Ecosystems and Principles of Community Innovation. Media in the Ubiquitous Era: Ambient, Social, and Gaming Media. IGI Global. 2011.

Karhu, K., Botero, A., Vihavainen, S., Tang, T., Hämäläinen, M., A Digital Ecosystem for Boosting User Driven Service BusinessProc. of MEDES 2009, ACM Press.

Botero, A., Vihavainen, S., Karhu, K. From closed to open to what? An exploration on community innovation principles.Proc. of MindTrek 2009, ACM Press.

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  1. Pingback: Aalto Mobile App Guide – Editathon (October 18, 2013) « Service Factory

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