Main authors: Sara Brogaard, Christa Törn-Lindhe, Torsten Krause, Iris Maria Hertog
Edited by: Ewert Aukes, Peter Stegmaier
List of Figures
List of Tables
||Chief Executive Officer
||Constructive Innovation Assessment
||Corporate Social Responsibility
||Forest Ecosystem Services
||Lund University Centre for Sustainability Studies
1.1 Overall case description
“Love the Forest” (Älska Skog in Swedish) is a multi-stakeholder partnership project about the Swedish forests. The main activity of “Love the Forest” is a contest for elementary school students and teachers, organized by the Nordic region’s largest science center: Universeum in Gothenburg. The contest and its mission is defined in conjunction with the “Love the Forest” partners from academia, business representatives from the Swedish forestry industry, local politicians and people who work for various organizations. The partners support the project with financial and human resources, knowledge and continuous advice.
Love the Forest is based on the working model “Young people speculate” where elementary school students meet the “Love the Forest” partners. During these meetings, the students can express their visions and ideas about the Swedish forests and showcase how they see forest resource use in the future. This way they have the opportunity to influence their surrounding environment and its future. The main activity is a competition in which the classes develop a project idea around innovative and new uses of forest resources and the forest itself, which they then present to the different representatives from industry, academia and the public.
The Love the Forest project aims to disseminate facts and fascination about the Swedish forests and to encourage students to visit the forest more often. Furthermore, the project aims to give them the opportunity to reflect on how the Swedish forests are currently used and how they can be used differently in the future to achieve a more sustainable world. This sustainability perspective should be explicit in the pedagogical content of “Love the Forest”. For example, we stimulate participating students to acknowledge a breadth of ecosystem services, to take into account the social and ecological consequences of proposed solutions/innovations at different time scales. Furthermore, Love the Forest should touch upon the complexities that surround forestry (e.g. multiple interactions between forests and climate) in a way that fits with the age of the participants.
For Universeum, the competition is an appreciated part of its business as it contributes both financially and pedagogically to the science centre’s core mission of education. In addition, it also increases the visibility of Universeum among schools and schoolchildren and strengthens networks with partners from the Swedish forest industry as well as academia beyond Gothenburg University and Chalmers University (both of which are founding members of Universeum).
InnoForESt first of all provides an opportunity to systematically study and analyze the “Love the Forest” multi-stakeholder educational initiative in order to gain a better understanding on how it potentially contributes to a transformation of the Swedish or European forest sector. The project gives a unique opportunity to identify factors of importance for up-scaling and transfer of this niche model to widely different biophysical and institutional forest contexts in Europe.
1.2 Problem background
The Swedish forest has played a key role in Sweden’s economy for centuries. Sweden’s forest cover is one of the highest in Europe with 70 percent, making the forest our greatest natural resource. About 57 percent of Sweden’s land area is covered by productive forest land . It is essential for the Swedish economy that the forestry sector continues to drive the economy forward. However, the demand for forest products is changing and the Swedish forests sector needs to accommodate a range of pressures. Sweden is the third largest exporter of wood products after Canada and the United States . On the one hand, the forest industry must supply timber that is used to produce sawn wood, pulp and paper, as well as raw materials for energy production. On the other hand, forests are increasingly seen as providing a range of important non-provisioning ecosystem services, such as carbon sequestration, biodiversity habitat, water regulation and space for recreation, hunting, indigenous Sami reindeer herding and tourism. Combining these multiple uses is a challenge. The Swedish forest sector must find a balance between respecting different values people hold and products and services supplied by the Swedish forests, in order to transition towards a more sustainable society via a more sustainable use of the forests and forest resources. “Love the forest” was developed in response to these challenges, recognizing the significance of getting more people to visit and enjoy the Swedish forest and to learn about its ecological functions and understand the importance for society. Ultimately, the goal is that young schoolchildren can reflect on all the values and products of the forest and understand its significance for our common sustainable development. This in turn should increase the interest for the forestry sector.
2 Case overview
2.1 Case history
The project “Love the Forest” started in 2016 as a joint initiative of the Universeum Science Centre (which was founded by the University of Gothenburg and Chalmers University, Gothenburg Municipality and the West-Swedish Chamber of Commerce) and a number of Swedish forest enterprises and forest associations. Love the Forest started as an educational initiative with the aim to teach children more about the importance of forests in the Swedish context (Figure 1).
The idea for Love the Forest emerged in 2015 when Universeum began to work on its forest theme as part of a grand re-design of its tropical forest exhibition and education program geared towards bringing issues related to the world’s forests closer to the audience.
Figure 1: Gantt chart of Innoforest project duration.
During the fundraising process of this development, potential and actual partners showed a great interest to support the Älska Skog initiative primarily economically. Subsequently, a dialogue was started on what kind of initiative would give the greatest impact.
Through several workshops with Swedish forest actors, their main purposes for participation could be formulated, which then defined the core purpose of the idea. Universeum then developed the idea and presented Love the Forest’s plans, timetable and costs for the actors. In this planning process special consideration was given to partners who can be regarded particularly valuable for the project and the perspectives dealt with, and hence can participate without needing to contribute equally financially.
As in all business models, there were actors who did not have sufficient resources (human and/or economic) allocated in their budgets in order to participate. In addition to financial support for the project, there is also a need for partners to have an interest in the content of the competition, which for some companies in the Swedish forest industry can be difficult to find time for. And also, since there were a wide range of different forestry interests among the actors, some of them felt that the proposal did not match their interests and terminated the collaboration.
Agreements were signed between Universeum and those actors who wanted to become partners in ÄS. The partners signed up for a 3-year commitment (2016-2018) and the first steering committee meeting was held in November 2016. In 2017, the Love the Forest initiative was run for the first time and then again in 2018. The Love the forest initiative was first designed to be run for two consecutive years. Due to the positive response of the involved partners, schools and pupils, we are now working to re-design the project into “Love the forest 2.0”. The aim is to develop the project into a long-running yearly initiative where students can take part, visit Universeum, and learn more about the importance of forests from different perspectives.
2.2 Brief stakeholder constellation
On a general level, partners in Love the Forest have an overriding common agenda to increase awareness on forestry and forests in Sweden, making people spend more time in the forests, and to attract future potential employees. Today fewer young people are growing up with direct experience of forestry and there is a concern that this will mean a loss of interest in the sector compared to other areas. For the project´s partners the initiative means a wide range of benefits, for instance in gaining an understanding of what values young people hold in regard to the Swedish forests. Moreover, the project partners come in contact with the younger generation – an important stakeholder in the long-term run, either as consumer and beneficiaries of the Swedish forest, or potentially even in the form of new employees or forest managers. The partners are given the opportunity to describe their work, their mission and the importance of the forest in a different and more easily accessible way, that is by reaching out to the broad public (students, teachers and potentially even the families of the students). Through Sweden’s largest science centre, Universeum, a communication channel is established that plays an important role for future sustainable forest development.
The initiative requires a high level of commitment and resources from the partners who run the project together with Universeum. The forest companies and associations involved have to devote considerable time in order to design the project’s assignment in a way that reflects society´s challenges. They also have to choose, and understand, the right target group, in this case schoolchildren and teachers. Therefore, the collaboration with Universeum is an important element, since their staff knows how to use educational methodologies to convey knowledge, provide inspiration about a range of topics and spark creativity among the visitors and the target audience. The competition also requires teachers who are willing and have the time and opportunity to introduce new ways of working in the classrooms and to free up the resources needed for a successful outcome for the pupils.
The partners involved sometimes have different interests and motivations to partake in an initiative such as Love the Forest. Either they want to support broad public education and get young people to become interested in Swedish forest topics again, or they see these types of initiatives as a way to build consumer trust and a favourable public image. In order to prevent and mediate potential conflicts that may arise when groups with different and sometimes opposite views meet, it is important that the scientific perspective is clearly present in the Steering Group. In this way, representatives from the research community are able to provide the scientific basis needed to make informed and balanced decisions and to provide a counterweight to politized or even polemic debates around forestry. Table 1 below lists some key stakeholders in the original Love the Forest project (2017-2018). As we are still in the process of developing Love the Forest 2.0, it is not yet clear which partners/sponsors will be involved there. However, in the first two CINA workshops some new stakeholders (additional to the ones listed in table 1) included representatives from regional and local administrations (e.g. county administrative board of Västra Götaland, Region of Västra Götaland, city of Gothenburg).
Table 1: Stakeholders that were involved in Love the Forest 2017-2018.
2.3 Reflection: overall governance situation before workshop
Sweden has a strong forestry sector including several large forest owners and forest-related industries. In the case of Sweden’s largest forest-owner association as well as Sweden’s state-owned forest-owning company, timber extraction and timber processing into sawn timber, paper, and pulp go hand in hand. However, the latter is also engaged in seedlings production, the development of forests as venues for hunting, fishing, and other nature-based experiences, and promoting growing forests as a substantial contribution to climate regulation. The Swedish Forest Agency aims to balance objectives of production and environmental/nature protection. Yet, large volumes of timber production in Sweden tend to dominate environmental values related to forests. Timber extraction in large volumes raises problems due to neglected environmental values. Nevertheless, the Swedish forest-owner association highlights that “it is crucial to find the balance between the environment and increased production”. Subsequently, the most recurring debates among Swedish stakeholders are referring to the balancing of preserving FES and the extractive use of resources. One such debate is around forestry management practices using clear-cutting or selective logging methods, as the latter is still practiced on a very limited scale in Sweden where clearcutting is the norm. Another debate, and related, is on whether all growth volumes should be used as a renewable resource, or if the forest should be left for improved carbon sequestration.
The large ability for carbon sequestration by Swedish forests, in combination with the increasing need for forest biomass for the growing bioeconomy, has fuelled interest in intensification of forest management. Important management changes brought forward by the Swedish forest agency includes the reduction of wildlife populations (manly cloven-hoofed game) and the need to increasingly make use of improved varieties for achieving the increase in productivity. However the need, means and broader consequences regarding such intensification practices has been challenged by a range of actors. These actors argue for the need for increased diversity and a less intensified Swedish forestry that is more robust to withstand climate impact and other calamities, and to encourage a much broader range of ecosystem services. Finally a larger debate has been ongoing since some years regarding ownership rights versus protection of diversity. Central in this discussion is the registration of key biotopes (indicating a biodiverse forest). The industry argues that registration of key biotopes in productive land in itself means no formal protection of the land and does not give any right to compensation, while in practice the wood resources in a key biotope becomes useless because there are few buyers of none-certified forests (these areas cannot be certified). It is then argued that the inventories of key biotope areas in practices hiders the right to decide the right to use (harvest) timber on your own land.
Following these and other discussions a situation of fundamental goal conflicts regarding the best use and management of Swedish forest resources exists. These also came forward very clearly in the stakeholder meetings during the Love the forest 1.0 preparations. In the development of the innovation we tried to manage these different perspectives in two ways. In the development of theme one, forests as a platform for integration, we did essentially not see any prevailing conflicts but rather a uniform support for a better introduction of new Swedes to our nature and to learn about forestry, the right to public access, and to appreciate and benefit from our forests. In the development of theme two we experienced that the issues of the best use of Swedish forests in a changing climate is surrounded by highly diverging views and also an urgent need for more knowledge sharing about the complex interrelations between climate and forests. Here we instead based the theme of “the climate challenge” on the need for stakeholders to continue their learning processes through increased dialogues in-between potential stakeholders which would be required to realise the “climate challenge”. Even if this could cause extended discussions continuing (or even in some cases starting) the dialogue around these issues is important for the resilience of Swedish forests. The continuation of Love the Forest could contribute here in offering one platform that can enable further collaboration between actors and potentially towards more robust decision making in the forestry sector, and also prepare the next generations in identifying synergies and trade-offs that have a long term impact.
3 Overall approach
3.1 Innovation strategy of the case study
The strategy for the innovation of Love the Forest 2.0 has essentially been to follow the plan for the CINA workshops steps in order to developed elaborated, pedagogically enhanced version of Love the forest that could start running in the year 2021. This is in turn driven by an overriding aim to develop the goal of enhancing knowledge and curiosity regarding the multiple values and services of Swedish forests together with relevant stakeholders. The carried out and planned workshops follow the CINA core development steps; innovation analysis and visioning, innovation assessment and conceptualisation and innovation road mapping, further described below. In the development process, several important pedagogical, collaborative and economical challenges of the innovation need to be taken into consideration and discussed, some of which also have an important impact on the innovation strategy:
One of the project’s greatest challenges is to find space in the educational curriculum. Teachers and students must meet the performance objectives and therefore it can be a challenge to find space for the project. Another challenge is to create a broader target group, i.e. a diverse group of students. Project participants shall represent Swedish diversity in many respects, which must lead to an active and conscious selection process carried out by the project coordinator. The final challenge involves project partner commitment. In addition to financial support for the project there must be an active interest in the competition’s content, and for large companies in the Swedish forest industry, it can be difficult to find or commit the necessary resources for participation in the multi-stakeholder educational initiatives. To meet these challenges strategically, different types of actions are required. Most of all, on the part of Universeum, a methodical and structured relationship with the Gothenburg City School Board is beginning to appear. In order for the city’s teachers to be given space in their curricula, their principals need to be instructed by the board. Therefor, the Universeum CEO and Head of Education meets annually with representatives from the city’s school board. From an innovation perspective, it is also strategically important to involve the city’s principals in the development work. The more involved they are and feel, the more likely they are to engage their schools and students in the project. For our last workshop, the Innovation team invites both teachers and principals to participate.
To meet the challenge of increased diversity among participating students, several different strategies are planned. Here too, teacher participation in development is an important aspect – it is they who know best what is needed to attract the interest of non-Swedish-speaking students and their families. Universeums innovation team is networking with teachers from socioeconomically vulnerable areas on a weekly basis in its mission as a supplementary classroom.
The last challenge is the most strategically difficult, since participating companies do not openly acknowledge their commitment to brand boosting (greenwashing). But by being clear about Universeums mission and the project’s purpose and goals in every business contact, Universeum hopes to be able to engage partners with genuine interest in the sustainability of the future.
3.2 Platform and network process
Before the 2.0 version of Love the Forest was developed, we had several occasions to meet and interact with various stakeholders involved in Love the Forest 1.0. In this way, we could observe stakeholders and the Love the Forest 1.0 project steps in action. Also, we got better informed of the views of key stakeholders (students and teachers) regarding forest ecosystem services in general and Love the Forest in particular (Goodwin, Brogaard, Krause 2019). These occasions were mainly part of Love the Forest 1.0, but also after the finish of the project some networking and data collection in the Västra Götaland Region and beyond has been taking place.
Examples of networking occasions
- Teachers Inspiration Day – teachers from participating schools are given inspirational lecturers.
- Final Event at Universeum – practical exercises on forestry and the winners of the contest.
- Focus group sessions with school classes who had participated in Love the Forest.
- Interviews with key stakeholders of Älska Skog 1.0.
As part of a master thesis project at LUCSUS, a workshop about the regional implementation of Sweden’s new National Forest Program was attended in the region of Västra Götaland in spring 2019. In this way, ongoing debates and challenges as well as different stakeholder’s positions in those discussions in the region were captured. He0072e, also interviews with the Steering group members of the Regional dialogue process in Västra Götaland were conducted, focusing on the design of the regional dialogue processes.
In the initial contact with stakeholders, a platform specific area available on the InnoForESt portal would have been useful for storage of preparation material and results to be used for the workshops. This would also have made stakeholders more aware of the InnnoForESt project and the other cases studies in the project, in an early phase. Several of the participants in our workshop asked about the other experiences from the other case studies in the project. In October 2019, we had a pre-CINA3 meeting at Universeum, where we further consolidated and concretized our final prototype (a school project for high school students about the interactions between climate and forests) with Universeum staff members. This was a creative and productive meeting in which we, amongst others, decided to direct Love the Forest 2.0 towards high school students writing their mini-thesis (gymnasiearbete).
3.3 Overall CINA workshop strategy
The aim of this first workshop was to carve out the first set of scenarios towards Love the forest 2.0. The starting ideas were based on reflections and lessons learned from Love the forest 1.0 carried out with the previous partners through interviews and from findings from questionnaires and focus groups with teachers and students done by the case study team in spring 2018. Background information was brought together in a text of 11 pages that was compiled by Christa from our research and deliverable material and sent out before the workshop.
The workshop was facilitated and moderated by the organization Realize (Mr. Thomas Hagbard). Realize supports companies and organizations to work concretely with the creation and implantation of innovations. The involvement of the external facilitator was suggested by Universeum, as they are used to work with external facilitators in the development of new projects. Furthermore, we judged that a professional facilitation was needed when participants’ time is limited and time should be used very efficiently to reach the workshop goals. It also made it possible to have us as innovation area teams as participants in the workshop besides of that we had been part of the planning process amongst others through three meetings with Realize facilitator Thomas.
Along the lines of the CINA approach, the second workshop was dedicated to prototype assessment, with the aim to further conceptualise the three main scenarios that emerged out of the exercises in workshop 1. Due to the number of stakeholders that in the end could participate, two of these scenarios were selected for the conceptualisation. The same external professional moderator we used in the first workshop (Realize, Mr. Thomas Hagbard) facilitated the second workshop. This approach worked really well and contributed to an open and relaxed atmosphere. Furthermore, we were able to connect with the invited participants with who we plan to work in the future.
Following the CINA approach, our third and final workshop was a roadmapping workshop, with the aim to test and get feedback on our prototype and two scenarios from high school teachers. The two scenarios were outlining different options for the part of our prototype that was still the most unclear. This was with regard to how to organize the relationships between the involved actors in the school project (students, teachers, scientists, case study partners and Universeum). We also included a number of questions to get feedback on the prototype more broadly. A Universeum staff member moderated the workshop, and the IR team members that were present took the role of observers and note-takers. The workshop was very productive and led to a number of important new insights for the innovation.
In summary, the sequence of workshops that we had in the Swedish team started with a visioning workshop where two of the innovation themes were elaborated into several scenario-embryo. The 2nd workshop then assessed two further developed scenarios emerging out of workshop 1. After workshop 2 the team had two elaborated scenarios that were then discussed together with Universeum staff at several occasions, including one meeting with the full IR-team. Out of this meeting our prototype then emerged. This prototype, the climate challenge targeting high school students, was then assessed in a third workshop, the roadmapping workshop, where different conditions and options to make the prototype more viable was discussed.
4 Type 1 workshop(s): Innovation analysis and visioning
4.1 Visioning workshop 1
4.1.1 Scenarios used
The preconditions for the workshop were:
- Love the Forest 2.0 wants to take advantage of all the accumulated knowledge and experience from previous projects at Universeum. Love the Forest 2.0 wants to attract the parts of our target group that was previously difficult to engage with. Love the Forest 2.0 has the ambition to attract a broad field of partners/financers.
- Love the Forest 2.0 ambition is to be the most attractive school project in terms of attracting students.
Figure 2: Two scenarios as presented to the WS 1 participants.
In our first CINA
workshop, we started off with the two main themes that had come up as desirable directions from the interviews with the partners of Love the Forest 1.0. These were:
- The interactions between forests and climate (including climate change impacts on forests as well as forests’ and forestry’s role in climate mitigation and in climate adaptation), and
- The use of forests as a platform for improved integration of migrants according to a model of nature-based integration.
The workshop was held in Universeum’s conference room (Gothenburg), from 10am to 3pm that is located in the staff area of the large building in central Göteborg. Hence the setting was very familiar for the Universeum staff while new to the outside participants. Lunch was catered by Universeum to eat in the lunchroom where also other staff were eating while we were there. One large roundtable, PowerPoint presentation by Moderator who presented objectives and aims of the workshop, breakout groups for discussions in smaller constellations (two groups) with mixed groups of stakeholders. For the 2nd part of the workshop and the creation of new scenarios the groups were again split and 3-4 persons were intensively working together for the part.
Besides the Swedish innovation area team and Universeum staff (those that took active part developing and running Älska Skog 1.0, as well as staff with key roles in past school project) two external experts were invited related to two main tracks suggested by the partners for Älska Skog 2.0. Those were a) forests and climate change as well as b) the forests as a platform to learn about Swedish forests for newly arrived Swedes. LUCSUS staff took part as well.
WS1 participants: roles and organisations:
- Project manager / content developer // Universeum
- Head Fundraiser // Universeum
- Project manager // Universeum
- Pedagogue / content developer // Universeum
- Pedagogue / content developer // Universeum
- Senior guide / content developer // Universeum
- Pedagogue / project planner // Universeum
- Head of Programme // Universeum
- Recreation Coordinator // County Administrative Board of Västra Götaland
- Program officer // Focali (Forest, Climate, and Livelihood research network)
- Researcher in Swedish IR // LUCSUS
- Researcher in Swedish IR // LUCSUS
Invited stakeholder who notified absence:
- Business director // Universeum
- Pedagogue / content developer // Universeum
4.1.4 Key thematic findings
The key findings from this first visioning workshop were of two types: lessons learnt from previous and similar projects and input from previous project partners.
- Practical work works best: if we work on forests – be in the forest. Not just talk. An important and difficult note for schools/classrooms/science center.
- Applicable to all students despite age: concrete assignments works best. We can’t be theoretical / hypothetical. When working on actual problem based cases the participants get more engaged.
- Partners who engage with real problem cases and not only financial means are more satisfied with the project and cooperation.
- Since the teacher is the one planning the semesters and assignments in relation to the curriculum, the teacher has to be the one seeing the pros with participating in the project. If the teacher’s work will be eased when participating, the chances that they’ll join increases significantly.
4.1.5 Detailed thematic findings
The setup of the workshop consisted of the following main working steps as below. Some findings and reflections are presented under each of those, while the emphasis is put on the final exercise developing concrete future scenarios for Love the Forest.
- Ecosystem services from forests – brainstorming
In this exercise, the two groups were identifying a range of services from the forest. Those were written down on post-its and then grouped according to type of service. In addition to the services described in the traditional ecosystem services framework as well as the services integrated into developed concepts in the next exercises, the following main values and dimensions in relation to forests were brought forward by the working groups:
- to see animals in their natural environment (experience, curiosity)
- all people have a connection to nature and in the forest we can connect to our origins
- spending time in forests creates security and confidence for oneself by testing boundaries in controlled forms
- learning more about the right of public access is important
- cultural inspiration (developing art, design, music etc. )
- Problem formulation in relation to the two main tracks
- problems of integration:
- Ignorance, reluctance, fear, language issues
- Sweden’s has complex social codes and a special culture that is difficult to quickly overview/understand. For example, one is supposed to be quiet, just right/just enough. The “Jante law” means that, in Sweden, doing things out of the ordinary, or being overtly personally ambitious is viewed as unworthy and inappropriate. Also the saying “one oneself is the better farmhand” is telling: if you want to be certain something gets done, do it yourself.
- problems related to climate change understanding
- Difficult to connect local and global dimensions
- Lacking basic knowledge of ecosystem services
- Poor knowledge of what can be done on individual, national and global level
- Difficult to link with their lifestyle (consumption and health)
- Lack of commitment, climate deniers
- Important to get to know about simple solutions in everyday life, difficult to see their own direct influence in everyday life
- Difficult to see/understand that a small change (positive or negative) can have important influence
- Matching problems/needs with different forest ecosystem services
Here identified problems were matched up with ecosystem services. This part was the least inspiring and least useful exercise as to some degree everything could be matched together.
- Developing ideas/concepts (scenarios) for Love the Forest 2.0
Figure 3: Examples of output from ideas development in track one – The forest as a platform for integration.
Figure 4: Examples of output from ideas development in track two – Forest and climate change.
The final part of the workshop was dedicated to scenario development and resulted in six different potential directions forward. This was the main exercise in terms of concrete outcomes for continued work. This part went very well and groups advanced generally very quickly. Participants came up with three different scenarios for the climate change track and three for the integration track. Here, we present two from each track. The visualisations on the sheets below (Figure 7 and 8) resemble as closely as possible the formulations used in the workshop. The scenarios were developed based on the problem formulations (related to integration and climate change respectively) and discussions about the values and services that forests provide. The time for the exercise was well used and all groups worked in a focused way in order to make the scenarios concrete in the relative short time. In the climate track there were no specific discussions in the groups that pointed to tension in how the “issues” were viewed or could be tackled. However, we repeatedly came to a divide on how central forest resources and the role of forests had to be in the scenarios. This breadth is reflected in the different scenarios. These range from scenario’s were trees are central (e.g. what happens in the absence of trees) to more lifestyle oriented scenario’s (e.g. focusing on consumption and its environmental and climate impacts).
The setup worked overall well and participants very soon engaged in the different group tasks divided into the two main tracks. One of the exercises came out less well: that was the matching the problems/needs with forest ecosystem services. The problems designed were in some cases not directly met by forest ecosystem challenges, but rather related to other more overriding societal level challenges regarding for example processes of integration of immigrants as this was one of the overriding themes.
The Universeum staff expressed that they really appreciated working in this way where their creativity and experiences were used as input to developing new potential projects (scenarios). This in contrast to the normal work procedure at Universeum where staff are asked to react to industry or other partners’ needs and vision when initiating a school project. I (Sara) personally found it difficult to both participate and be an observer. In the end, I participated more than observed. We had discussed before that to be only observer may be inhibiting to the process. Furthermore, we were not supposed to take a lead in the discussions but rather ask questions and bring up ideas as “from within” the workshop participants.
Time was too short towards the end of the day but this was the time limit as given by the managers at Universeum as this was the time they could spare for this activity. We also used the project funding for the staff according to the number of hours they devoted to this, as the organization is a profit organization. We ended up using more time for the final exercises than planned, so we didn’t have the opportunity to report back on our scenarios and really round off for the next step. This was unfortunate, but instead the scenarios were brought rather far and became more numerous.
4.1.7 Stakeholder interactions
During the first workshop, facilitated by an external moderator, we tried to include a variety of stakeholders from different sectors, e.g. , local and regional government, industry, academia and NGO’s. The setting of the workshop at Universeum allowed for a relaxed atmosphere and open discussions among the participants, guided by the moderator who also proposed specific questions for the groups to focus on during the discussions. The discussion setting allowed for direct interactions among the different workshop participants in the smaller groups and created an open and interactive exchange of ideas and thoughts on the scenarios and ways forward to the ‘Love the Forest 2.0’ initiative.
4.1.8 Lessons learnt
This was an important event towards Love the Forest 2.0 and the choice to focus on developing ideas further based on Universeum staff and innovation area teams and external key experts worked out well. This is furthermore a way of minimizing stakeholder fatigue (involving too many stakeholders too often) as the partners in this case are also the ones that are the actual “buyers” of the new project to be developed. They are the one who will need to fund the project in the end.
The workshop significantly moved the Love the Forest’s two tracks into more concrete scenarios that we perceive are corresponding to the original interests and demands from the interviewed stakeholders from Love the Forest 1.0 (the interviews were done prior to WS 1 in order to inform the workshop content and the development of the scenarios used for Love the Forest 2.0). This workshop foremost moved the project forward in terms of thematically defining ideas of content in the two tracks, concretising the various problem descriptions and scenarios related to them. Furthermore, pedagogical enhancement for improving the learning outcomes were developed and integrated into the resulting scenarios as input for workshop 2.
The following three factors that were identified prior to the first workshop were considered fundamental for the development of Love the Forest 2.0 Throughout the process they have remained the basis for being able to successfully work towards developing the idea of our Love the Forest 2.0.
- to contribute to the education of school children on forest topics (role of forests for climate change, biodiversity, society and economy), elevate their knowledge on the importance of forest ecosystem functions and services and critically analyse current forest management and uses.
- to capture the aspirations and needs of the different forest partners, and balance their different interests and views on forests with the overriding sustainability perspective that Universeum holds.
- to maintain economic viability for Universeum as the initiator and coordinator of Love the Forest 2.0. This means that the initiative can be financed by the partners which also take an active role in participating in the development of various phases of the innovation.
The scenarios created in the workshop aimed to find synergies between these three factors.
During WS1, the main focus was on the content of our innovation in the light of the collective experiences that participants in the workshop had from Love the forest one and other school projects that they had been driving or taking part in. The workshop concluded that the governance of Älska Skog 2.0 would be similar to that of Älska Skog 1.0: a project driven by Universeum, directed towards students and teachers, and funded by partners from the Swedish forest industry / private sector, municipality and governmental agencies.
5 Type 2 workshop(s): Prototype assessment
5.1 Prototype workshop 1
5.1.1 Scenarios used
During WS1, in particular three clear requirements were set for the innovation to be implemented:
- Students must work with real cases to achieve motivation.
- Since the project is about forest, many tasks must also take place in the forest (not just in classroom).
- The way to the students’ hearts goes through the teachers – so there must be a carrot to make the teachers want to join the project.
So, regardless of whether the groups at the workshop were working on an innovation with a climate or integration focus, the above three aspects would be taken into account. Therefore, the following three scenarios were designed through merging of the six sketches (related to climate and integration) that were developed during WS1 – and used as input to WS2. The two first scenarios are linked directly to the integration theme from WS1 (directed towards children with disabilities and new Swedes), whereas the third scenario is linked to the climate theme from WS1.
Scenario 1 – Wild Kids
Love the Forest 2.0 will be a school project in form of a competition for students in grade 4-6. It is free to all teachers/schools in the region to sign up, which in practices is likely to result that most of the participants are from schools in the Göteborg City Centre. This project is the option that most closely resembles previous years’ editions of the Love the Forest.
Students’ mission is to design a day trip in the woods for a specific target group. The target groups are defined by our partners and are real “cases”, that is, it are audiences who cannot, or do not want to, spend time in the forest. Some examples: GDF (Gothenburg Young Deaf Association)/US Gothenburg (young people with Visual impairment)/Autism and Asperger Gothenburg/RBU (Children and young people with disabilities).
The work is carried out with support from coaches/mentors from the various target groups and partners with specific competencies. Forest excursions should cater to the different needs of the target groups while providing a holistic forest experience. The price is a real Wild kids-overnight stay in a forest for the whole class!
Figure 5: Flyer for Scenario 1 as sent on the invitation.
Scenario 2 – Certified Outdoor Guide
Love the Forest 2.0 will be a school project where students in grades 7 and 8 develop into outdoor guides in their various nearby forest areas. The mission is to plan and implement an outdoor activity for students in SFI (Swedish language course For Immigrants).
Classes are working in groups and are assigned to an outdoor coach (for example, volunteers from partners, the Scouts, outdoor activities, outdoor life and others). During the working period (March-June), students will visit different locations in the forest, map out a path, determine stops and decide what to talk about at the various stops. By guiding each other, they practice how to capture a groups interest and exert clear leadership.
In order for all guided tours to hold a similar set-up (so that they can be assessed in a similar way), students will be asked to address some supporting questions: What’s interesting about the site from a biological perspective? What activities can be carried out here? What happens to the site if one violates the right of public access? How will the site look in 20 years?
After all these preparations, participating student groups will conduct their guided tour for SFI-students, for max 1 hour. All participants will evaluate their experiences (via Google form), and assess the structure, content, and how well the guidance groups have conducted the tour. The participating students, after completing the final guided tour, become certified outdoor guided with stylish diplomas and prizes. A jury, consisting of partners and special education experts, will chose the contribution that best demonstrated understanding of the target group and offered a relevant content that both enriches and challenges.
Figure 6: Flyer for Scenario 2 as sent on the invitation.
Scenario 3 – Climate Challenge
This scenario presents a more classical school project for students attending class 7-8 (in the Swedish system, 12-14 years of age), designed to inspire students, continuing education for teachers, and developing student’s independence through work on own projects. The mission is to identify a climate problem in one’s neighbourhood, to investigate it, and to propose a solution with the help of the forest. Proposed activities on student inspiration: imagine your world without trees (places in the woods or in town): What happens if all the trees would disappear (photosynthesis, pollination, build houses, etc)?
- The pupils find out facts about the problem and are looking out for a solution
- The students determine who they must influence to implement their solution/pay attention to the problem
- Students make contact with managers they identified
- On a separate occasion in the middle of the work and before the final day: students have collected questions and there is an opportunity to ask the expert.
Study visits can include forests affected by climate change (e.g. fire, storm, and other environmental impacts). Here, it would also be interesting to compare forests with different management regimes. How the final day should be designed is not yet developed, nor how the winners are chosen. The price will be climate offsets and planting trees in the schoolyard or nearby, possibly even prize money for class travel (which is a good carrot).
Figure 7: Flyer for Scenario 3 as sent on the invitation.
The 2nd workshop was held at the World Cultural Museum (Gothenburg) a major building just behind Universeum in one of their conference rooms, with a view over the city. The workshop started with a joint lunch at 11:30am and then lasted from 12:30-16:00pm. Set-up in pre-divided groups according to expressed interest and preferences for one of the scenarios we sent out together with the invitation to the workshop several weeks before. Two tables were used for the two scenarios.
Since the purpose of the second workshop was to develop a scenario according to the world’s demand and needs, a wide group of partners were invited – both established and potential. The representation of both teachers, businesses / financiers, important ambassadors for the project and experts in forest related pedagogy was important. Unfortunately, the representatives for the financers (Sveaskog) and the experts (Swedish Society for Nature Conservation) cancelled on short notice.
WS2 participants: Roles and organisations:
- Project manager / content developer // Universeum
- Senior guide / content developer // Universeum
- Pedagogue // Universeum
- Forest manager // City of Gothenburg – Real estate office
- Forest technician // City of Gothenburg – Real estate office
- Head of Nature pedagogics // City of Gothenburg – Park & nature management
- Forest consultant // Swedish Forest Agency
- Competence Manager // Region of Västra Götaland – Natural Resource Management office (organisation responsible for education on Natural Resource Management in the region)
- Researcher in Swedish IR // LUCSUS
- Researcher in Swedish IR // LUCSUS
- Researcher / Deputy director // LUCSUS
Invited stakeholders who notified absence:
- Head Fundraiser // Universeum
- Nature-pedagogue & teacher // Mölndal city
- Head of Communications // Sveaskog
- Climate and land use strategist // Sveaskog
- Expert forest social values // Swedish Society for Nature Conservation
- Nature guide & pedagogue // Swedish Society for Nature Conservation
5.1.4 Key thematic findings
In this workshop, we focused on the design of the school project rather than on the content. A number of proposals and ideas came up to further develop the “young people speculate” model that the Love the Forest project is based on:
- Changing the application procedure by having participating schools designing a project that they aim to work with during the project time. This makes participants more prepared and there is a feeling of “award” of having being selected for the project. This is also expected to attract more participant classes for the project.
- Making sure that students spend more time in the actual forest during the project time. This may be through study visits that are compulsory or by promoting experiments in their own out-door environment. In the end, this has to be balanced with maintaining having time to visit Universeum at this is one of the important reasons for students and teachers to participate in the “young people speculate”-projects.
- Closer integrating the project partners to the project and to the participating classes by assigning a mentor from the participating/funding organisations that is available for feedback and guidance over the project period. This makes better use of the in-kind inputs of the organisations.
- More clearly making visible the results from the projects by for example using advertising space in local busses or on a specific billboard in the city for displaying results and increase dissemination.
5.1.5 Detailed thematic findings
The results gave a wealth of information from the different group discussions. Below we exemplify important output from the group working on the scenario climate challenge and wild kids respectively. Firstly, participants were asked to provide spontaneous reflections on the provided scenarios in terms of “pros” and “cons”. The Wild Kids scenario was appreciated because it is concrete and local and gets students to be outside. Climate change was seen as a more abstract, but also very urgent and important, topic.
In a next step, participants were asked to specify five steps of which the school project for each scenario should consist. In this way the possible structure for the Love the Forest school project was outlined, for example consisting of application, kick-off, systematic work, creative work and reward.
Then, participants zoomed in on each of the five steps they identified, and wrote down the planned activities, necessary resources, unclarities and the possible contribution of their organization to the school project in this step. Some results can be seen below.
Figure 8: Results from spontaneous reflections on the provided scenarios in “plus and minus” or “pros and cons”.
Figure 11: Overview of workshop outcomes. Top: Results from the exercise on the five main steps of Love the Forest 2.0 and associated headings. Mid: Results from the detailed discussion on the different identified steps. Bottom: Film clips produced by the final groups presenting the two entrance scenarios for the “wild kids” and the ”climate challenge” – now analysed and reconceptualised.
Finally, the workshop ended with a creative component, in which participants were asked to visualize their reworked and further specified scenarios using LEGO. Participants then filmed the LEGO scene while narrating the different steps of the school project as they imagined it.
The workshop was set up with the following steps:
- Spontaneous reflections on the provided scenarios – discussions in the 2 groups according to the 2 scenarios and 10 clear reflections to be listed in terms of Plus and Minus of the scenarios.
- How and why should your organization contribute to the development of Älska Skog 2.0.
- Based on the description, how do you think the concepts should be designed? What are the 5 main steps? What is the “HEADLINE” for each step? (Within this activity, at a moment when we stated to lose focus, we were interrupted in the work by the workshop facilitator and all were included in an energising dance session around the venue!).
- Build and describe your proposal. Use LEGO + post-its. Film your story + tell us about your suggestion. Summary and reflection on the proposals and the day.
The results of WS2 were gained through recordings of the discussions, notes taken during the workshop and two films recorded from each of the two scenarios of a built-up LEGO visualisation of the scenario.
Very engaged discussions in the groups – made us reflect that the participating people rather than the number of people has been very important in this step. The venue was inspiring and well positioned for the participants. The Swedish Innovation area team could participate in the exercises, as they did not have to facilitate the workshop. This enabled the team to feed their knowledge into the process as stakeholders. A warming up exercise using a simple Lego set was very creative and useful as an icebreaker and for introducing oneself to the workshop group in a personal way. The slot on the workshop agenda on how and why participants organizations’ could contribute to the development of this version of Love the forest 2.0 (part 2) was in the end not devoted time to in the workshop as the main funding organizations were not present in the workshop. However, this was also partly included in the “5 main steps sheet”. This aspect in the end needs to be carefully sorted out when the new partners are to be signed up. Another dimension to further work with and constructively move forward on are the different stakeholders’ position regarding the preferable forest management and use of forests in relation to climate impact on forest ecosystems, and how to best use forest resources for climate change mitigation purposes. As this is an area where the views are rather polarised presently in the debate a new Love the forest project could provide a platform for constructive discussion on the themes. When groups were reflecting on the five main steps of the agenda and how the concept should be designed (part 3) the results were similar to each other across the groups. Further breaking each step down into tangible dimensions for each of those steps was difficult to manage for all the five steps and results became more elaborated for the first part.
5.1.7 Stakeholder interactions
During the workshop, all stakeholders who participated were able to get to know each other and could discuss their views and opinions related to the proposed scenarios in small groups. The discussion was open and friendly and facilitated by the moderator who also structured the workshop and the specific tasks. The participants were to document their discussion and thoughts on notes and had to fill out A3 sheets specifying the different ideas and necessary tasks in order to attain the objectives of the proposed scenarios. Lastly, the small groups were asked to visualize the order and ideal steps for the fulfilment of the scenario using Lego.
5.1.8 Lessons learnt
Getting a variety of external stakeholders to attend and be engaged in the workshop requires careful planning. In the light of the delicate political context on forest governance in the Swedish IR, this could potentially include avoiding bringing stakeholders who hold conflicting views together in the same room. We can only speculate about why the two (for the workshop) most important external stakeholders withdrew their participation the day prior to the workshop, but it might be that the presence of the respective other stakeholder was a reason, or that it was just an unfortunate coincidence. Using the external moderator was very helpful as it allowed us to be more present in the workshop and actively participate in the discussion and development of the prototypes. However, finding the right balance between a) time of participants spent, i.e. , not having workshops spread over the entire day which would potentially reduce the attendance and willingness to sign up, and b) fostering a creative process while reaching more concrete and tangible outcomes is challenging. Nonetheless, we believe that the workshop helped us to develop the scenario that will become the input for the third and final workshop and was an important stepping stone to create Love the Forest 2.0.
By focusing on the design of the school project rather than the content in WS2, some new factors came up that need to be taken into account in the development of our innovation. For example, the school project we propose has to be attractive for schools/teachers since they are the ones who will participate in it. One prerequisite for this is that the project should be free of charge for participating schools. Another is to work with real cases and to focus on practical work that teachers would not be able to offer to students otherwise (due to time restrictions etc.).
A major challenge is to find time in the curriculum and/or to link the school project to specific subjects and learning outcomes. This might be easier to do with younger children, as their curriculum is a bit more flexible. On the other hand, working with older children offers more opportunities to capture some of the interesting and important complexities related to forest ecosystem functions and services. Furthermore, participants in WS2 were concerned about how to ensure that a wide range of different schools are included, i.e. from different areas in Gothenburg and with diverse socio-economic profiles. This might need some active interventions from Universeum’s side to attract schools that usually do not participate in Universeum’s school projects.
Apart from attracting schools/teachers, the school project should also be attractive for students/classes. This becomes more important when higher grades are targeted, as more of the initiative and decision-power then lies with the students. In discussing the different scenarios, the question came up multiple times whether the “carrot” included in the scenarios (e.g. competition, prizes) would be motivating enough to attract students.
At this stage we did not discuss major changes to the proposed governance mode. However, two suggestions are worth noting. First, one of our key findings from WS2 is the need to integrate funding/partner organisations more closely to the project, for example by assigning mentors to the school classes. This would change the expectations put on participating stakeholders, and it could also open up opportunities to allow for different kinds of contributions from different organisations. Secondly, in discussing the Wild Kids and Climate scenarios, it was seen that the topics of these proposed projects could allow for including a wider range of stakeholders than only forest stakeholders. This would broaden both the possibilities for funding and the range of interests to be taken into account.
6 Type 3 workshops: Roadmapping
6.1 Roadmapping internal workshop
6.1.1 Scenarios used
The third workshop was held in February 2020, but in order for WS3 to be as good as possible, i.e. get as many participants as possible that want to participate in the project, an internal workshop was held to “test print” the final scenario on Universeum’s talented educators (on 15 October 2019).
Figure 12: The two different scenarios for WS3: Year 7-9 students (left) and Highschool students (right).
The scenario that was presented ahead of the workshop was a distillation of the result from WS2, i.e. a further development of the “Climate challenge” scenario (see WS2). We chose to continue with this theme (instead of the integration-related scenarios) because of high stakeholder interest and the salience of climate change in the societal debate. It was a school project for the region’s students in grade 7-9 (age group: 13-16 years old) with the aim of increasing knowledge of what causes our climate problems, what methods we use to gather data on climate impact and the importance of trees and forests for the climate and how climate change threatens forests in Scandinavia.
During that internal “test print” workshop, the scenario was further developed. As the Universeum pedagogues thought that the complexity of the school project was too high for students in lower grades or even for grade 7-9, the prototype was developed into a high school project instead. For Universeum, this is an important development and a new challenge, since they have never implemented a project for the senior high school level previously despite the fact that it has been requested at different encounters with Gothenburg schools.
6.2 Roadmapping workshop 3
6.1.2 Scenarios used
So, the final prototype used in WS3 is a project that offers senior high school students real forest cases originating from the participating partners which they can work on for their thesis that they do in the third year of their studies. Besides that, the initiative will include learning opportunities for both teachers and students through the organisations (university and others) that participate in the project on the relationships between forestry and climate change. Finally, also more general knowledge on research methods or scientific writing skills will be developed.
The two scenarios for the prototype were outlining different options for the part of our prototype that was still the most unclear. This was with regard to how to organize the relationships between the involved actors in the school project (students, teachers, scientists, case study partners and Universeum). We also included a number of questions to get feedback on the prototype more broadly.
Table 2: Scenarios used in roadmapping workshop 3.
|Scenario 1: Teacher focus
||Knowledge transfer in the project is firstly directed to the high school teachers of participating students. Through teacher education and coaching, inspiration days or seminars, teachers get support from both scientists, Universeum pedagogues and case study partners. This can be in terms of knowledge about climate and sustainability, but also about how to supervise research processes. During the project, teachers can check in with scientists and case study partners if this is needed. In this way, teachers become well-equipped to supervise the students’ high school projects, and they also receive long term competence development within climate and sustainability.
|Scenario 2: Student focus
||Knowledge transfer in the project is firstly directed to the participating students. Through excursions and/or inspiration days, students can meet both scientists and case study partners. Students gain knowledge about climate and sustainability, but also about how to approach the research process. During the project, students get back with questions to scientists and case study partners if this is needed. The direct contact with research and working life maybe inspires students.
The third workshop was held in February 2020, from 4pm to 6pm, at Universeum’s conference room (Gothenburg). “After-work” snacks and drinks were provided by Universeum during the meeting. After the two-hour workshop, an exclusive guided tour through Universeum’s indoor rainforest was offered to the participants (after opening hours). The participants consisted of high school teachers representing two different high schools in Gothenburg. They were divided into two groups for a part of the discussion.
The purpose of the third workshop was to understand what would be needed to make our prototype attractive and realizable for students and teachers. The participants therefore consisted of high school teachers of schools in Gothenburg. Both teachers and principals were approached, from both STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) and social science spectra, and also different high schools. We ended up with representation from natural science teachers from two different schools. Note that a great deal of interest was shown through many positive response emails, but due to the teacher situation (high workload and little time for development and planning) they regretted that they could not attend.
WS3 participants / roles // organisations:
- Project manager / content developer // Universeum
- Workshop facilitator // Universeum
- Manager pedagogical development // Universeum
- Senior guide // Universeum (not present during the workshop, but came in afterwards for the guided tour)
- Researcher in Swedish IR // LUCSUS
- Research Assistant in Swedish IR // LUCSUS
- High School teacher (economics & trade) // Hvitfeldtska gymnasiet
- High School teacher (chemistry, mathematics) // Hvitfeldtska gymnasiet
- High School teacher (biology, natural science) // Hvitfeldtska gymnasiet
- High School teacher (biology, chemistry) // Hvitfeldtska gymnasiet
- High School teacher (physics, mathematics) // Hvitfeldtska gymnasiet
- High School teacher (biology, chemistry, natural science) // LM Engströms gymnasium
- High School teacher candidate
Registered participants who notified absence:
- High School teacher // Sjölins gymnasium
- High School teacher // Sjölins gymnasium
6.2.4 Key thematic findings
In this workshop, we received feedback on our prototype from high school teachers. Overall, there was a lot of interest for a school project hosted by Universeum and directed towards pupils writing their high school thesis. It was positive for Universeum to hear that there is a gap for them to fill, especially when it comes to formulating feasible real world cases and enabling contact between students and scientists. Participants expressed a clear preference for the student focused scenario, so this will form the basis for developing a final version of the new school project. Furthermore, some adjustments and clarifications need to be made to the prototype based on the outcomes of this workshop (see more about this under detailed thematic findings).
6.2.5 Detailed thematic findings
- High school theses are often written in groups of 2-3 students who are in the same study program – i.e. they will apply in groups and not 1:1.
- Teachers and students need help to find relevant and doable case studies that fit with different school subjects (beyond biology, which is nowadays the most popular subject for high school theses) – i.e. working on concrete case studies was a very good idea.
- Own data collection is an important component for a successful high school thesis. This might however only be true for natural science subjects – i.e. our suggestions and ideas work well, but we need to work with only one programme at a time.
- Interdisciplinary work is not easily done. The high school theses have to be evaluated according to ONE school subject, and should rather be done in non-mixed groups. (Different aspects of) the case studies should thus be clearly directed towards specific school subjects – i.e. if we want to promote interdisciplinary collaboration between students, we should think through carefully how to make this work.
- Students today try to contact scientists, but they often do not get a reply – i.e. the suggestion to have access to a pool with scientists to contact is one of the main components making this proposed school project attractive.
- The organization and time plan differs between schools – i.e. it is important for Universeum to be aware of this when developing a project that should fit multiple schools.
- Teachers do not feel a direct need for more knowledge on climate change / sustainability. They do not usually dive deep into the content knowledge that is relevant to the high school theses that they supervise – i.e. if teacher inspiration/education is to be included in innovation, it should be made clear what teachers can get out of it.
- Linked to the previous point, all participants shared a clear preference for the student-focused scenario.
- Evaluation (and possibly competition) should only be based on academic performance and the idea to ask students to create a visualisation of their end products was approved by the participants – i.e. they were critical to the idea of including some kind of “votes from the public” in the competition.
- Students have to be opponents for each other’s high school theses. Afterwards, teachers/scientists/stakeholders could ask additional questions or give extra feedback.
- Some practical questions to discuss include: time tables and scheduling + what happens with student groups who have applied with a proposal but are not selected to participate in Universeum’s new school project?
The workshop was set up with the following steps:
- Presentation round: name, function, memory of one’s own high school thesis
- Discussion in two groups:
- How do you work with the high school thesis today? How is it organized in your school? What are possibilities and hindering factors?
- Is the high school thesis usually written individually or in a group?
- How important is the competition element in the prototype?
- How important is it to have real cases in the prototype?
- What knowledge do teachers need about climate change / sustainability? What kind of support would you need to supervise students who participate in the proposed school project?
- Discussion in two groups of a few of the example case studies in the proposed school project
- Plenary discussion
- What should be adapted in the prototype for you to be able to evaluate the high school theses in a good way?
- Which of the scenarios is most desirable to you?
- What else should we think of / take into account to make the proposed school project (prototype) attractive and realizable?
- What are you most excited about in the proposed school project (prototype)?
Engaged discussions both plenary and in the two groups. IR team members split up in the two groups to take notes and to ask clarification questions. We gained a lot of insight in 1) how teachers usually work with the high school theses, and 2) what could and could not work in our proposed school project.
Even though one of the schools was only represented by one teacher, this person was self-confident enough to be heard. The person who was probably most quiet and observant was the high school teacher candidate (who followed their internship supervisor to the meeting). The only thing that was unfortunate, was the lack of social science teachers in the room. When discussing the proposed case studies, some social-science-oriented case studies were dismissed relatively quickly as “not fitting in the natural science program”. Despite probing whether and how the case studies could fit in other programs, participants seemed to find it hard to leave their natural science lens behind.
Overall, however, the discussions were of good quality. The discussion questions were put up on papers against the walls, which forced the two groups to move around the room. The most difficult question to answer (for both groups) was: What knowledge do teachers need about climate change / sustainability?
6.2.7 Stakeholder interactions
During the workshop, participants engaged in open and constructive discussions. Most of them knew each other already, which allowed for an open atmosphere. At the same time, participants were curious to hear about each other’s experiences and also about how the high school thesis is organized in other schools. The moderator structured the meeting around specific discussion questions, and took a time-keeping role. IR team members took notes of the discussions, thus taking the burden of documenting the discussions away from participants.
6.2.8 Lessons learnt
The event was important for Universeum to establish contact with high schools and high school teachers, as Universeum has so far directed its school projects to primary schools only.
Returning to the factors that came up in the first two workshops, some of them have shifted markedly in our final prototype. Below, we will shortly discuss them one by one.
1) to contribute to the education of school children on forest topics and elevate their knowledge on the importance of forest ecosystem functions and services.
Here, the focus has shifted from forest ecosystem functions and services to climate change mitigation and adaptation more broadly. There seems to be an interest from Universeum to embed this in a broad and more interdisciplinary understanding of sustainable development, focusing on the Swedish forestry sector.
2) to capture the aspirations and needs of the different forest partners
By shifting the focus from forests (i.e. bioeconomy and specific forest based product innovations) to climate, the need to include private forest stakeholders (and their sometimes conflicting views) was reduced. As climate change is a topic that affects all, some larger private businesses in the area of Gothenburg could now become the target for fundraising efforts. This might lead to more freedom for Universeum when it comes to the content of the school project, which can now be more critical towards present management paradigms steering Swedish forestry than under the previous Love the Forest 1.0, which was mostly financed by the Swedish Forestry Industry.
3) to maintain economic viability for Universeum
This factor remains unchanged. Universeum requires financing for all its activities and the work hours put in by its staff, thus Love the forest 2.0 needs to secure long term funds to continue and implement the innovation that was developed. It can be added that as two unexpected situations arose during the InnoForESt project time that severely impacted the number of paying visitors to Universeum (heat wave summer season 2018 and CoVid-19 virus spring 2020) the need to have strong funding for the school projects was again underscored.
4) to be attractive for schools/teachers – e.g. participation free of charge, real cases, fitting to school curriculum
By shifting the target group for our school project from primary school students to high school students writing their gymnasiearbete (high school thesis), this factor has become more well-defined. Universeum’s school project will now have to be compatible with the learning outcomes and requirements set for gymnasiearbete at the national level. It should also be compatible with the ways in which different schools work with this (e.g. time plans, organisation, etc. ). However, there is now a possibility of exploring and studying important and relevant topics around forests and climate change in Sweden, which fulfills the objective of broadening the understanding of forest issues among students.
5) to include a broad range of different schools
This factor also remains highly important. Apart from socio-economic background which, diversity of study programs could also become a goal now, i.e. having students from natural and social science programs deciding to write their high school thesis about forests and climate change.
6) to be attractive to students – e.g. offer a motivating price/competition
On the one hand, this factor has become more important compared to before, as students themselves will have to apply to the project now. On the other hand, every student has to write a gymnasiearbete anyway and this might increase their motivation to apply, as they will receive scientific mentoring and support as part of this collaboration with Universeum. Also, a different age group compared to earlier scenarios puts different demands on what can be a good “carrot”.
Even though not all details are set yet, some clear evolutions in the proposed governance mode are: 1) shifting of funding partners from forest stakeholders to a broader range of companies. In the region of Göteborg many larger companies are based including car manufacturers and other industrial businesses that increasingly need to engage in climate and sustainability issues 2) Inclusion of additional “case partners” that contribute with a range of real-world case studies and mentorship rather than funding. This also increases their opportunity to be seen as future attractive employers to this group. 3) Scientists as a more active part of the stakeholder group to be included in the project. One drive to engage researchers in participating in such projects is that this may count as outreach and popular science collaborations for scientists and universities and is important to attract future students to different programmes. More fundamentally this can enable participating university partners to understand the interests and motivations that drive the students to engage in climate issues as well as to understand knowledge gaps regarding climate adaptation and mitigation of this age group. However participation will require assigned time (funded by the project) to work on such collaborations as many researchers have an increased workload and less time for these activities.
7 Overall lessons learnt
We experienced a very high level of engagement of the participants during the workshops. People were well prepared and contributed actively in all the three workshops we organised. This results in a very creative and result-orientated atmosphere. Nonetheless, sometimes we found it difficult to get some of the stakeholders on board and partake in the workshops, in particular the forest owners and the industry, who also cancelled their participation in WS2 a day before the planned workshop date (despite long term announcement and planning). We explain this with the development phase that is rather long and there is a concrete time factor and uncertainty factor among the industry / private sector partners (will this really happen and when?). Moreover, it might be difficult for industry partners to explain the importance and make them see the added values of the scenarios we proposed. Probably, for them Love the Forest 1.0 was more of a CSR activity showcasing their outreach work than a meaningful value adding activity. Generally, there was a larger interest among public sector stakeholders, local and regional forest management organisations and universities than from the forest companies themselves. Again, we think this might be due to the perception of the lack of value added to their immediate activities.
Regarding the workshop process, in retrospect, we do think it worked out quite well given the constraints we identified in the document. As the team had to prepare, develop and redevelop scenarios for each of the workshops this helped us in concretizing, sorting and merging the ideas that that precious workshop or stakeholder interaction had given rise to. Also in the end this had to be presented in an accessible way for the next workshop.
For our IR time-constraints were a main factor when developing the actual workshops. We limited the workshops to half-day workshops or, in the case of WS3 to two hours due to the difficulty of getting people together during a full work day. Particularly in WS3 we counted on the personal interest of teachers who invested their free-time, after work, to come and participate in the workshop. In summary we think that the CINA methodology was useful to construct and guide the set-up of the workshops, while at times, and as discussed in this report, it was also somewhat restrictive in how to develop the next steps of our innovation.
As we have discussed earlier in the report, the setup of the new stakeholder constellation is still not clear as we are in the process of developing the concept of our innovation Love the forest. Our ambition to further develop our idea of a senior high school project on forest-climate interactions in CINA workshop 3 worked very well and the participating teachers gave valuable insights regarding not the least the need to focus activities directly on the participating students rather than on the teachers at the schools. Following this third workshop, there will be a discussion with potential partners regarding the participation and funding in the climate challenge. Also, a further discussion will be needed on the preconditions for participation from various stakeholders and their acceptance of key sustainability principles such as partners acknowledging the importance of a broad range of (forest) ecosystem services in the work with new groups of students. If we get partners on board for the senior high school project that we are now aiming for, Universeum will be carrying out this project in the coming years. In this way, Universeum will continue to be the main node connecting forest-related stakeholders, schools, and researchers in the innovation network after termination of the InnoForESt project.
Goodwin, S. , Brogaard, S. & Krause, T. 2019. Values held by Swedish primary school students towards forest ecosystems and the relevance for a nature’s contributions to people approach. Ecosystems and People, 15(1). https://doi.org/10.1080/26395916.2019.1687585