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KAB Center for Governance will strengthen the bond between research, politics and social actors

October 25, 2023

In August, Jonas Törnblom assumed the role of Senior Advisor at the KAB Center for Governance. The position involves connecting researchers with societal actors to explore how they can jointly contribute to improved societal development. Already this autumn, a series of seminars will be organized with the aim of discussing how research can contribute to solving complex challenges in society.

The KAB Center for Governance is one of five research centers affiliated with the House of Governance and Public Policy (GaPP) at the Stockholm School of Economics. The center was launched last year with financial support from the K-A Bonnier Foundation.

– KAB Center for Governance differs from the other research centers within the House of GaPP. Our focus is on cross-pollinating and disseminating existing research so that it benefits society. There is relevant knowledge within the social sciences today that does not reach or serve society, and that’s what we aim to change, says Jonas.

Jonas was involved in the preparatory work that led to the needs and development of the House of GaPP.

– I have been driven by the question of how we can establish an education in Sweden that is focused on tackling the complex challenges we face in society today. This requires an interdisciplinary understanding and finding ways to lead horizontally since no single entity owns the entirety. We introduced these ideas in a report commissioned by Vinnova in 2019, which became a small contribution to the establishment of the House of GaPP, Jonas recounts.

Being able to contribute to making these ideas a reality is something Jonas finds both inspiring and important.

– I hope that by connecting various stakeholders, we can contribute to increasing knowledge about what needs to be done to create a better society. This week, we had our first seminar where we invited researchers and decision makers to discuss how research can contribute to more effective and future-oriented governance of our municipally owned companies. It provided many valuable insights, Jonas continues.

During the fall and spring, the seminar series continues, with a focus on how the Swedish school system can be enhanced through research.

– The development in our society has been moving towards increased specialization for some time. We have more and more actors with narrower roles and mandates. This makes it challenging to address overarching questions. Research can contribute to bridging these silos, but there is also a need for arenas where various stakeholders can openly and candidly discuss even complex and difficult issues. Here, the foundation plays a very important role, Jonas concludes.

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