Factors determining our future competitiveness

The election and Almedalen Week are approaching Almedalen is a unique meetingplace for debate on important issues for Swedish society which Sweden’s next government will have to address. IVA is focusing on a number of issues that are crucial for our future competitiveness and welfare: digitalisation, sustainability and knowledge. In Almedalen we will present research-based analysis as a basis for policy proposals and solutions.

Digitalisation is washing over us. More and more services require efficient digital infrastructure. Is Sweden investing enough and in the right way to ensure sufficient capacity for increasing volumes and operational reliability?

IVA’s intense focus on digitalisation indicates that the incentives for various actors to invest in digital infrastructure are too weak. New cooperation is also needed to ensure that effective decisions are made by the Ministries and authorities. We intend to present proposals in the autumn, but will start in Almedalen by asking a series of questions about how digitalisation is changing talent supply requirements and about brand new, emerging personal integrity issues.

Good societies of the future will be sustainable. That requires climate neutrality, increased resource efficiency and definite steps towards a circular economy. IVA’s activities clearly reveal how eager the private sector is to seize new opportunities for profitable, sustainable business. But businesses want ground rules for the new market conditions. Are the politicians who will make the decisions keeping up? We will provide some answers in Almedalen.

One important aspect of IVA’s centennial programme is to provide proposals on how best to address the current challenges in Swedish education. In Almedalen we will be asking a number of questions: How is our view of knowledge impacting schools and attitudes to learning? What knowledge do pupils really need when they leave school? We are looking for answers in research results and international comparisons. After a number of years in Finland it is clear to me how efficient the fact-based international comparisons are in informing discussions on Sweden’s challenges.

Integration is already one of the main election issues. The parties jostling to show who has the toughest migration policy. From an IVA perspective, it is clear the debate is missing an important point. While it is true that the large inflow of refugees is a strain on our society because groups of unqualified people are finding it very hard to enter the job market, this if far from the whole story.

Sweden has been a country of immigrants for a very long time. Workers from other countries are still essential for our job market to function – especially those with special skills. In our Jobbsprånget project, IVA has shown what an asset newcomers with a degree are for Sweden. Many of them arrived in the big refugee wave in 2015–2016. Don’t miss our seminar in Almedalen where we will provide concrete examples of an efficient way to get them into the job market, to benefit both the individual and society.

Contact information

Tuula Teeri
Phone +46 8-791 29 71