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Snow Management

Published: 20 April 2011

Research area

Innovation management and knowledge transfer from traditional industries to the tourism and hospitality industry. A particular focus is on transferring methods and technology from the building and construction industry to increase profitability in snow tourism companies.

Project

Tourism industry in general and the snow and ski industry in particular are facing big challenges due to the changing climate. An increasingly warmer climate makes it difficult to ensure a predictable start and maintenance of the snow season. Despite climate changes, the market needs and customers' willingness to pay are still very high and a huge opportunity is wide open for those who, although warmer winters, can deliver quality assured snow products.

By considering the ski industry from an industrial perspective and snow as a precious and rare commodity, the field opens up for new ways of thinking. Innovation means to "go to into something new." But something that is new in one business can be old and proven in another. In particular, the building and construction industry is similar to the snow industry in many ways. For example, both sectors use large amount of machines to process and move masses to a certain level of quality. Building with concrete has some similarities to constructions of snow. The logistics at a construction plant is close to similar to that of a ski area.

With a focus on innovation management and knowledge transfer, the building and construction industry is examined for technology and thinking that can be applied to the ski industry. Most likely, the methods of survival for the snow industry are to be found in already existing thinking and technology in other branches.

About Stefan

Stefan began as a doctoral student at the fall of 2010. He has a background as a manager and consultant in the tourism and hospitality industry. Stefan has a M.Sc. in industrial engineering and management, supplemented by further studies in organization and leadership. After some years as a management consultant, Stefan worked over 10 years with tourism in various management positions, including as project, marketing, production and plant manager.

During his successful years as a practitioner in the tourism industry, Stefan deliberately used methods and tools from the traditional core industries to increase competitiveness and profitability. Now in academic, his research is trying to refine and develop more methods for increased knowledge transfer and innovation. In addition to his research, Stefan is working as teaching assistant in snow related courses. Part of his time, he also works in projects with various aspects of avalanche safety.

PhD student: Stefan Mårtensson
Supervisor Sven Knutsson, Tommy Edeskär