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In the past the ultimate goal of Nordic startups was to move to Silicon Valley. But today the trend seems to be reversing: more and more they decide to stay or move back, as the environment for innovation supported by world class design has become attractive. They have produced horizontal networks, creative brain-clusters, environments where risks are taken. Leading experts on innovation and design ask the question, whether the Nordics that for long have been among the leading nations in statistics that measure capabilities to innovate, still have to answers to what drives innovation? As disruptive economies and new technologies change the landscape of entrepreneurship, do the Nordics manage to adapt and compete? And they hold answers for you!

This event is part of the Nordic Ways book project, which is published by the Center for Transatlantic Relations at SAIS, Johns Hopkins University.

Opening remarks by Dagfinn Høybråten, Secretary General, Nordic Council of Ministers


Christian Bason, CEO Danish Design Center

Pekka Sauri, Deputy Mayor of Helsinki

Shomit Ghose, Managing Director Onset Ventures

Nicklas Bergman, Entrepeneur and Techonology Investor (TBC)

Torsten Kolind, CEO and co-founder YouNoodle

Mette Søs Lassesen, Market Director, Synergies and Liveable Cities Ramboll Environ

The sessions will be chaired by Andras Simonyi and Ulla Rønberg, Senior Visiting Scholar SAIS, member of the project team. The panels will be introduced by the speakers, followed by Q and A.

Event program:

 3:00 p.m. Opening remarks Dagfinn Hoybråten, Secretary General, Nordic Council of Ministers

3:20 – 4:20 p.m.  Nordic DNA: design-led innovation and why the Nordics have to shape up! Nordic DNA, organizational design, design-led innovation 

Keynote and debate

4:20-4:30 p.m. Coffee break

 4:30-5:30 p.m.   How is the Nordic  entrepreneur succeeding in a global environment? Has the flow to Silicon Valley been reversed? What is the added value of Nordic cooperation?

5:30-6:00 p.m.  Drink