Stockholm Urban Forum: How co-creation can support collaboration for the implementation of the Agenda 2030 


Mistra Urban Futures Stockholm hosted at the end of May the Stockholm Urban Forum - Co-creation for Agenda 2030 in the Stockholm region, at Subtopia in Alby in Botkyrka municipality. Stockholm Urban Forum gathered 150 participants and 30 speakers from politics, public sector, research, private sector and civil society. The forum focused on co-creation to realize the global goals of the 2030 Agenda 2030, in particular SDG 11 on sustainable cities.

The conference was designed to facilitate collaboration and exchange of experience on concepts, methods and tools related to co-creation. Co-creation can be seen as a way to facilitate and help sustainability work to move forward and go even further. This means that the focus must be on understanding the needs of citizens and citizens. What do they want us to prioritize? How do they want to be included? How can the region and the city's various actors work together to realize the global goals, at global, national, regional and local levels?

Some thirty speakers participated from authorities, municipalities, regions, companies and organizations that work with sustainability and Agenda 2030: Among others Åsa Romson, expert on environmental law and politics IVL Swedish Environmental Research Institute, and Christer Larsson, city planning director in Malmö and Katarina Luhr, deputy Mayor of Stockholm. 

Panel discussions and side-events
Participants at the conference also participated actively in panels and side event s on Urban Girls Movement, test beds, mobility, building communities, Smart Creative City, AI-streaming data, counteracting segregation and inequality, sustainable play environments and much more.

One of the challenges raised in the panel discussions was transport and infrastructure that has to be developed and improved in our three major cities. "Collaboration between research, politics and the public is needed for us to move forward in these issues," said Åsa Romson, expert on environmental law and politics, IVL Swedish Environmental Research Institute. "The sustainability goals and the climate issue are not solved by a single actor, everyone needs to hook arms”, said Katarina Luhr, City of   Stockholm. 

Mapping of various co-creation processes
Johan Larsson Lindahl, from Mistra Urban Futures Stockholm, presented the mapping of various co-creation processes and initiatives for sustainable development in the Stockholm region. The entire report from the survey will be presented in its entirety in autumn 2019, but some of the good examples can already be seen under "Stockholm co-creation" on Global Challenge's website.

One of the conclusions of the conference, in order to move forward in the work on sustainability and urban development, is to really understand that we are dealing with complex problems. In order to realize sustainable urban development, we need to "switch up" in terms of knowledge and understanding of co-creation processes and how they can help. Above all, we need to gather the knowledge that already exists so that these experiences become a support for implementing actors locally. The results of the conference are now compiled in collaboration with a number of actors and will pave the way for future work.
Behind the Stockholm Urban Forum is Mistra Urban Futures Stockholm Node, which consists of Openlab, KTH (Royal Institute of Technology), Stockholm University, Stockholm Resilience Center, IVL Swedish Environmental Institute, Quantified Planet and Global Challenge.


Photo by: Annika Källvik and Joel Ahlgren