Josefin Rönnbäck and Humtank will work broadly and intensively with the goal of increasing the humanities status. "We will among other things contact politicians and funding agencies",says Josefin Rönnbäck. Photo: Lars Andersson

Humtank want to give new perspective

Published: 9 May 2014

Researchers from 12 different universities in Sweden have joined forces and launched the think tank Humtank. The purpose is to promote the humanities both in academia and in public debate.

- Unfortunatly the humanities are too often the exception, says Josefin Rönnbäck, Senior Lecturer at Luleå University of Technology and one of the researchers in the organization.

Initiative of the humanities faculties

The idea for the think tank was born a little over a year ago at the initiative of the management teams in the humanities faculties at Swedish universities.

- We have long felt that the humanist perspective is missing in the public debate and that the humanities are not a priority in academia. We see this especially when we look at how research grants is awarded, says Josefin Rönnbäck hoping that Humtank can be a tool to change the image.

Launched in April

Humtank was officially launched on April 3 at the Medelhavsmuseet in Stockholm, and interest in the group has been great from the start.

- We have received a number of inquiries from several different directions. There is everything from non-profit organizations and museums to government agencies like the Department of Agriculture who announced that they would like to cooperate with us, says Josefin Rönnbäck which has a series of questions she wants to pursue in the think tank.

- First and foremost, I want to reduce the gap between the academic and the outside world. I want to popularize the humanities and make visible what is humanistic skills and how a humanist approach benefits the entire community.

The University is investing in Humtank

Luleå University enters with SEK 100 000 per year in the think tank, and 10 percent of Josefin Rönnbäcks working hours are now  dedicated to Humtank.

- It's great that I got confidence from the university to represent us in Humtank aldo it feels natural in that I am a historian, she says. Josefin Rönnbäck is convinced thar Humtank has an important role to play in future public debate.

- Any issue in society has a humanistic dimension and it is through our research we can identify and rectify the unjust structures that still exists. The humanities are basically all about working for a better world

Contact information

Josefin Rönnbäck

Rönnbäck, Josefin - Senior Lecturer

Organisation: History, Social Sciences, Department of Business Administration, Technology and Social Sciences
Phone: +46 (0)920 491406
Room: A319 - Luleå»