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Great interest in conference on social innovations

Published: 25 April 2019

How can we create sustainable innovations that solve societal challenges? It was the focus when 140 participants met at Luleå University of Technology during the conference Social Innovation in North on April 25.

– We are happy to offer a program with topics that concern all interest groups, and also that we attracted participants from civil society, authorities, academy and business, says Marita Holst, project manager at Luleå University of Technology.

The participants were given the opportunity to exchange experiences and learn more about innovative activities, methods and services that contribute to a social and sustainable society. Malin Lindberg, professor of industrial design at Luleå University of Technology, talked about a project which aims to support the establishment and upscaling of social innovations. One of those who participated in the project and also visited the conference was Fredrika Johansson from Ebeneser Cultural Center in Luleå. She says that the method that was developed quickly became useful for them.

– We realized that we are actually a social innovation as we are a non-profit organization and cultural center work with social community, co-operative cultural activities and also have an organizational structure that invites for co-creation.

Four other researchers presented their perspective on social innovation. From Luleå Unversity of Technology: Anna Ståhlbröst, Thomas Zobel, Jeaneth Johansson. From Umeå University: Lucas Haskell. 

The university is part of a major venture

Luleå University of Technology are working on the establishement of a regional node for social innovation, as part of the national knowledge platform funded by Vinnova with more than SEK 20 million. 

– This is a huge investment and the conference today is a good meeting place for networking with actors in the region, which is necessary to create long-term collaborations, says Marita Holst.

This is the third consecutive year that the conference is organized by Luleå University of Technology, Umeå University, Coompanion.