The Stockholm Science City Foundation is an outstanding organization with a mission very much in alignment with ours at Research Triangle Park. I had the privilege of spending the morning with the Chief Executive, Ylva Williams, to learn more about their organization and efforts to bring together the four major academic institutions in Stockholm to collaborate around a shared vision ( Vision 2025 ) which was created by the institutions, municipalities, counties and private sector with an interest in the ongoing success of the region.
But first, a little history as the background from which the Stockholm Science City Foundation operates. There are four main academic institutions located in Stockholm:
- Karolinska Institute
- Stockholm University
- KTH Royal Institute of Technology
- Stockholm School of Economics
Each one is quite different from the other and brings something of value (time, talent, resources, networks) to the collaboration. Up until the mid-1900s these institutions were located in the central part of Stockholm. However, over the years of development and growth within the city and further urbanization each institution (with the exception of the economic school) was moved to the edge of the city limits. This is a common theme in the history of research parks and universities which often require a fairly significant piece of real estate from which to operate. There is also shared interest from each of these institutions to remain engaged with city life and each other while geographically separate.
Stockholm Science City Foundation was created for the purpose of convening these four institutions along with the hospital and healthcare system, national government, counties and municipalities in order to move forward a bold vision where each leverages its resources, physical assets and talent to bring about a brighter future for Stockholm.
In many ways, Ylva and her team are relationship brokers. They serve with the primary objective of building trust and consensus that will ultimately bring the Vision 2025 to life (StockholmLife).
The Stockholm Science City has also launched the H2 Health Hub, which is a co-working space for entrepreneurs within health-tech that strengthens the development of the participating companies and positions Stockholm as a leading region for health tech… and the Digital Health Days conference, which is an international event focused on the reimagination of healthcare through the convergence of technology, patient care, design, and innovation. Both of these initiatives are excellent examples of what the world can look like when diverse areas of our economies and institutions collide!