Knowledge and expertise

For more than 100 years the Royal Swedish Academy of Engineering Sciences (IVA) has been a meeting place for Sweden’s future. IVA builds bridges between the business community, academia and policy makers. We bring together the expertise and experience of about 1.300 Academy Fellows and 250 member companies.

IVA is an easily accessible expert body, independent of individual interests, ideologies and party politics. The Academy is financed through grants from the business community, foundation funds and direct government funding.

Vision

IVA’s vision is “Technology in the service of humanity”. We believe in and work for the ability to make a positive contribution to society through technical and economic science.

The more than 1.000 Swedish Fellows, are divided into twelve divisions with different focusing in various fields within engineering and economics: Mechanical Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Building and Construction, Mining and Materials, Management, Basic and Interdisciplinary Engineering Sciences, Forest Technology, Economics, Biotechnology, Education and Research Policy, and Information Technology. 

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Mission

IVA’s mission and ambition is to contribute to the development of society through knowledge and common sense, and through fact-based and rational reasoning.

IVA runs projects and also arranges seminars throughout the country that are free-of-charge and open to all. IVA assembles prominent engineers, economists, researchers and entrepreneurs, as well as private and public sector leaders who generously share their intellectual capital and whose involvement rests on a foundation experience and expertise. IVA is an enriching and inspiring meetingplace for its members; a platform where people can get involved in social issues, applying a scientific and fact-based approach.

IVA adopted a new strategy in connection with the Academy’s 100th anniversary in 2019. It describes the Academy’s common vision for how we can and want to work together to promote a sustainable and competitive society, and how we can help to build a better world.

Four focus areas

IVA’s projects and programmes are run within the Academy’s various divisions and are based on four interdisciplinary and complementary focus areas to meet the future challenges in society. These themes have been chosen because, from IVA’s perspective, they are linchpins for Sweden’s development and are areas in which IVA has a role to play. The four focus areas are: World-Class Knowledge; Industry and Enterprise of the Future; Climate–Resources–Energy; and People–Technology–Society.

The Industry and Enterprise of the Future focus area explores the conditions and opportunities for enterprise, leadership and industrial development. Projects within this area are: The Entrepreneurship Academy; Research2business; IVA’s Smart Industry; and Prince Daniel’s Fellowship.

Director: Johan Carlstedt, Focus Area Chair: Carola Lemne

Climate–Resources–Energy is a focus area exploring resource effectiveness, the circular economy, the energy supply and climate issues. Projects within this area are: Climate Crossroads; Sustainable New Start for Sweden; and Resource Effectiveness and the Circular Economy.

Director: Karin Byman, Focus Area Chair: Karl Bergman

Within the World-Class Knowledge focus area IVA is exploring the conditions in the Swedish education system, attitudes to knowledge and learning, and the conditions for research, higher education and life-long learning. Projects within this area are: Knowledge Society of the Future; Junior Academy; NTA Digital; and Private Sector R&D Investments.

Director: Martin Wikström, Focus Area Chair: Maria Anvret

The People–Technology–Society focus area is a meetingplace for systems thinking and a holistic perspective – shedding light on how people, technology and society can interact for a better future. Projects within this area are: Digitalisation for Increased Competitiveness; Digitalisation – facilitator of future prosperity; and Sustainable Water Supply.

Director: Staffan Eriksson, Focus Area Chair: Åsa Söderström Winberg

Foothold in the business community

The Business Executives Council ensures that IVA has a foothold in the business community. The Council’s members – private and public sector companies and organisations – are an important part of IVA.

The Business Executives Council has about 250 member companies and organisations from both the industrial and service sector. Both private enterprise and public sector organisations are involved.

A strong foothold in the business community is essential for the work that the Academy does. The members’ expertise and experience is important to the Academy’s development. The annual membership fee is an important source of revenue to ensure IVA’s long-term funding.

IVA offers many opportunities for knowledge transfer and for members to exchange experiences outside their own company or industry. 

Global outlook

IVA is a national academy with a global perspective. The Academy has a strong international network and is an important voice in international contexts. The network consists of three main parts: the international Fellows, multilateral organisations (international academic and research organisations) and other academies of engineering sciences.

Having a global outlook and the ability to build long-term international relationships is crucial for Sweden’s future competitiveness, while international cooperation also provides opportunities to solve our significant global challenges. IVA considers it important to offer Swedish expertise in international contexts and to make good use of IVA’s international network as an expert body. It is also important for IVA to be an arena for scientific diplomacy and international cooperation.

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Building bridges

The Academy is an open and transboundary forum; an independent academy that builds bridges between the research, business and political spheres.

IVA creates interfaces between different areas of expertise, between regions and across national borders. We believe it is in meetings between people that new ideas and knowledge are born.

Over the course of a year, the Academy arranges over 100 meetings, seminars, workshops, hearings and field trips around Sweden and abroad.

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