The wish of Dag Wallgren is that Future Challenges in the Nordics, through interactions between researchers and experts in different fields, will help lead to new and broader insights into how our societies function. Through communication about the programme and the projects, decision-makers shall gain insight into the research that is done. Wallgren is CEO of the Society of Swedish Literature in Finland, one of the financiers of the research programme.
“Research and progress have led us to the modern world of today. The driving forces are a combination of human curiosity and laziness. We want to understand our surroundings and create better living conditions for fellow human beings. The results are not the merit of an individual researcher, research focus or research topic, but a combination of all knowledge and broad insight. Foundations aim to directly or indirectly promote wellbeing. This is accomplished by cross-border collaboration between leading experts in various fields, supported by visionary foundation funders.”
Why did you want to fund the research programme?
“When considering the challenges that our societies are facing, the meaning of knowledge, information and insight has increased and continues to increase. It has become more and more important to understand how citizens might react to changes in their surrounding world. When something goes badly wrong, reference is often made to “the human factor”. By considering the human factor at an early stage, before the effects of development become a fact, our societies can better handle great challenges.”
What are your expectations of the research programme?
“My foremost wish is that there will be interactions between researchers and experts in different fields and that these interactions will help lead to new and broader insights into how our societies function. Through communication about the programme and the projects, the decision-makers in our societies shall gain insight into the research that is done. I want the collaboration and dialogue between decision-making and research to be expanded.”
Why is it important to highlight humanities and social sciences?
“Humanists and social scientists observe and analyse phenomena in their surrounding world – they provide explanations. Researchers draw parallels and conclusions and these must be given publicity. Humanists and social scientists specialise in “the human factor”. Let us in time consider the human factor when we are dealing with challenges such as climate change, conflicts between people and groups, the polarisation of opinions or in assessing the effects of new information technology. This way we can be sure that the human factor is considered before it is too late.”