Stockholm Explorative Talks

Stockholm Explorative Talks On-stage

Theme: ChallengesI want to attend!
23 September 2021 | 09.30-15.45
Where: KMH, Royal College of Music in Stockholm

About the event

Let’s move beyond the usual patterns and methods of academic inquiry and discourse! Stockholm Explorative Talks On-stage is an event that brings together scholars from different disciplines, representing all the 18 universities of Stockholm.

The 18 scholars – who we call The Explorers – will engage each other in an interaction that will see them exchange interdisciplinary perspectives on present issues confronting the planet. This year’s curators, Gustav Borgefalk and Elisabeth Ericson, will steer an exploration of the theme, ‘Challenges’, which will try to locate new intersectional ideas and insights in the conversations happening on stage. To make the discussion freewheeling and encourage spontaneous ideas, The Explorers come totally unrehearsed and meet each other for the first time on stage!

Do you want to be part of The Audience?

This year’s edition of Stockholm Explorative Talks will be live-streamed. The event is divided into two separate sessions, 9.30–11.45 and 13.30–15.45. We will try to accommodate a limited number of attendees at the venue. This will be based on The Public Health Agency’s recommendations at the time, and the availability of seats.

About Stockholm Explorative Talks

Stockholm Explorative Talks is a stage for academic discussions confronting global problems with an interdisciplinary approach, by pairing unlikely academics together. Stockholm Explorative Talks welcomes experts from all over the world for a dialogue best described as dedicated, courageous and surprising. The aim is to gather the world’s brightest brains to examine current issues from new angles, and to find creative solutions to common future challenges.

Stockholm Explorative Talks is founded and run by Stockholms Akademiska Forum – 18 universities and the City of Stockholm.


Gustav Borgefalk is a technologist and entrepreneur. He is a PhD candidate at the Royal College of Art (RCA) in London and his research investigates the design, ethics and governance of persuasive systems. Gustav is a guest lecturer in behavioural design and persuasive technologies at RCA and Imperial College. He has an MSc degree in Business Administration from the Stockholm School of Economics and a diploma from Singularity University in Silicon Valley.

Gustav is also a technology entrepreneur and advisor to ventures at the Stockholm School of Entrepreneurship (SSES). He has been awarded Intel Top 50 Young Innovators of the World, been selected as a Millennium Fellow by the Atlantic Council and been named Leader of Tomorrow by St. Gallen Symposium.

Elisabeth Ericson is a communicator, educationist, writer, consultant, moderator, public speaker – all rolled into one. She has an academic background in Earth Sciences and Geography, and has been an external lecturer at Stockholm University at the Department of Geography.

Ericson has worked across both the private and public sectors in administrative and leadership roles in helping individuals, companies, and organizations to improve their communication skills. Her zeal for new ideas and passion for science, technology and education has also led to founding her own businesses.

The Explorers

The Explorers are scholars from different disciplines and academic backgrounds. Together they are a diverse group, representing all the 18 universities of Stockholm. They have been selected because of their ability to be creative, open-minded, and courageous!

Photo of Cheryl Akner-Koler

Cheryl Akner-Koler

Konstfack – University of Arts, Crafts and Design
Theoretical and Applied Aesthetics

Cheryl Akner-Koler is Professor of Theoretical and Applied Aesthetics at Konstfack – University of Arts, Crafts and Design. Her research interests pivot around how everyday aesthetic experiences in the real world drive creative processes. She also investigates the haptic aspects of movement, touch, taste and smell within the field of aesthetics.

Mark Bassin

Södertörn University
Political Geography and Geopolitics

Mark Bassin is Baltic Sea Professor in the Center for Baltic and East European Studies at Södertörn University. His academic background is in the history of ideology, political geography and geopolitics, with a regional focus on Russia-Eurasia and Central Europe.

Gunilla Björling

The Swedish Red Cross University College
Medical Technology and Nursing Science

Gunilla Björling is Associate Professor of Technology in Health at The Swedish Red Cross University College and Professor of Nursing Science at Kilimanjaro Christian Medical University College in Moshi, Tanzania. Her main research area is health in technical development and the bridge between medical technology, patient safety and nursing.

A man with rounded glasses and gray hair

Per Borin

Stockholm University of the Arts
Conducting and Musical Performance

Per Borin is Professor of Conducting and Musical Performance at the Department of Opera at Stockholm University of the Arts. He has extensive academic experiences in Germany, China and Sweden. Borin has been General Music Director for five opera houses in northern Germany and Conducting Professor in Stuttgart for several years.

Samira Bouabana

Beckmans College of Design

Graphic Design and Visual Communications

Samira Bouabana is Assistant Professor of Graphic Design and Visual Communications at Beckmans College of Design. She is the founder of Hall of Femmes, an initiative to highlight the work of women in the field of art direction and graphic design. As a teacher she has received the Educator of the Year award, given by the Foundation for the Promotion of Graphic Professions.

Vice-chancellor Robert Egnell of the Swedish Defence University portrait

Robert Egnell

Swedish Defence University

Peace and Stability Operations

Robert Egnell is Vice Chancellor of the Swedish Defence University and Professor of Leadership. His expertise is best summarized with ’the conduct and effectiveness of peace and stability operations.’ His research has spanned across civil-military relations, peace support operations, gender in military operations, women in combat, as well as the connection between security and development.

Photo: Anders G Warne

Stanley Greenstein

Stockholm University

Law and Information Technology

Stanley Greenstein is a Senior Lecturer (Assistant Professor) in Law and Information Technology (IT) at the Department of Law at Stockholm University. As a trained lawyer, he has experience of working in a mixed legal jurisdiction comprising the traditions of both civil and common law. Greenstein’s main area of research is the interaction between technology and law, and how these two disciplines relate to each other. His work has centred on the topic of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning, and its ethical and societal implications.

A portrait of the researcher Cecilia Katzeff

Cecilia Katzeff

KTH Royal Institute of Technology

Human-Computer Interaction

Cecilia Katzeff is Associate Professor of Human-Computer Interaction at the KTH Royal Institute of Technology. With a PhD in Psychology, she has a strong focus on people within the context of sustainability and ICT. Her research adopts a human-oriented approach towards the design of digital interaction between people, their environment and various artefacts and systems.

A portrait of the sports researcher Göran Kenttä

Göran Kenttä

The Swedish School of Sport and Health Sciences

Sports Psychology

Göran Kenttä is Associate Professor in Sports Psychology at The Swedish School of Sport and Health Sciences. The majority of his research is focused on elite sports with a stress-recovery perspective. He is engaged as an expert in sports psychology at the Swedish Sports Confederation, and he is also an Adjunct Professor at the University of Ottawa.

Linnea Lundgren

Ersta Sköndal Bräcke University College

Religion and Civil Society

Linnea Lundgren recently earned her PhD from Ersta Sköndal Bräcke University College. Her research interest is in the intersectionality of religion and civil society, both from a Swedish and a global perspective. Her dissertation project investigates the governmental regulation of religious communities in Sweden from the 1950s to today.

Jason Murphy

Sophiahemmet University

Emergency Nursing and Management

Jason Murphy  is a registered nurse in emergency nursing and management, and a Clinical Lecturer at Sophiahemmet University. With his extensive experience of working in nursing education and global healthcare, Murphy is presently enrolled as a doctoral student in Disaster Medicine at Karolinska Institutet. His research focuses on the evaluation of personal and institutional disaster medical preparedness, specifically in the context of Stockholm County.

Christina Neofytou

Karolinska Institutet

Molecular Neurodevelopment

Christina Neofytou is a doctoral student in Molecular Neurodevelopment at Karolinska Institutet. Her research focuses on the regulation of genes involved in brain development in health and disease, with particular interest in brain regions involved in social and cognitive processes.