Judith Mühlenhoff studied Sociology, Cultural Studies and Communication Studies at Free University Berlin, Humboldt University Berlin and the University of Glasgow. She worked for a trend agency and at the research and innovation division of the Deutsche Telekom. Her main focus is user needs analysis and positioning in early product and service development, using qualitative and creative methods. She is running the "User Research Lab“ for which she is, in cooperation with the BBC, analyzing media usage needs in the context of news. For her PhD at the University of Potsdam, Judith Mühlenhoff is exploring the role of culture as a resource of socio-cultural developments and trends that drive innovation.
Culture is playing an increasing role in the development of innovation. It is a breeding ground for trends and progress, which often emerge from certain communities, subcultures, or (avant-garde) art circles. Innovation is able to thrive if new connections are growing out of such networks. Therefore, this dissertation project analyzes cases that inhabit such overlaps. One example are medium-sized enterprises from the field of interior fittings, which spark innovation in their organizations by the help of artists. And the other case demonstrates overlaps between different networks within Berlin’s start-up scene.