by Laura M. Pana, Founder & Director Migrationlab
I spent the last 10 days in Stockholm; Alby – a suburb in Botkyrka Municipality within Stockholm with 80 000 residents of 180 nationalities- and Falun, a city 3 hours away from Stockholm, best known for its copper mining. For the 2nd time in Sweden, this particular trip was all about a Business in Residence programme, enabled by the European Cultural Foundation (ECF) and organized by KLUMP Subtopia, an incubator for cultural and social initiatives.
The goal of the BiR programme was to help us further develop our projects Welcome to The Living Room and The Ageless City; learn about similar projects in Sweden and share our work and practices with other social entrepreneurs in Stockholm.
Here's what I learned:
-> How urban gardening, art & design can bring closer communities in Botkyrka. Boodla builds ecological (school) gardens as a way to create a sustainable future, both socially and environmentally. Their aim is to promote the human ability to co-create their surroundings and get to know each other while they grow their own vegetables.
-> Got to know more about and exchange practices with The Good Tribe, a creativity and sustainability agency that helps organisations to solve social and/or environmental challenges. And Beteendelabbet, the Behavioural Lab, which uses insights from economic and behavioral research to create better functioning instruments in environmental policy, and to encourage sustainable consumption.
-> Got to work on our projects and have our concepts challenged. Great workshops with Ida, Sandra, and Anders.
-> Had the opportunity to visit and work in 2 of the coolest co-working spaces for entrepreneurs in Stockholm: The Castle Slottet, located in one of the wings of Sweden's Royal Palace. And The Large Knackeriet, located right near the Nobel Museum, which connects to the Cepheusgården, the largest and greenest courtyard in the Old Town.
-> Disconnection time took place 3 hours away from Stockholm at Lindsberg House in Falun. Initially a house to 'educate' the poor in the first half of the 20th century, Lindsberg is now a venue based on community living and perfect place to have some rest or develop your creative thinking.
-> Discovered Falun Copper Mine, which is under UNESCO Heritage, and had a lovely afternoon walk in the gardens of Sweden’s famous painter, Carl Larsson.
-> Met inspiring social entrepreneurs who shared their wisdom and perspectives with us.
-> Visited 'The New Human' exhibition at the Moderna Museet in Stockholm. The condition & possible future of the mankind are challenged through powerful audio-video installations with insights into a global warzone of religious fanaticism and political extremism, but also with examples of solidarity & compassion. Highly recommended! There is plenty of time until March 5, 2017.
-> And of course I got to make new friends
-> To sum it up, Ana's words are the best: "It is important to constantly remind ourselves that instead of having our shadows as our sole companions, we don't walk alone and it is through collaborative work and reflection that inspiring ideas flourish."
A Big Thank You for making all this possible to:
European Cultural Foundation
Anders Lindgren, KLUMP Subtopia
Ida Lemoine, Beteendelabbet
Sandra Kinnaman Nordström, The Good Tribe
The Lindsberg Community
And all the people we met and got to share experiences, practices and wisdom. It has been one of the most inspiring trips this year and a lot to process and to work on in regards to our projects!
Photos by Laura M. Pana @migrationlab & Ana Gonçalves @theagelesscity