SLU news

Meet one of our partners – interview with Ida Wiking, Uppsala municipality

Published: 15 April 2021
Portrait of woman. Photo

Ida Wiking works as a development leader at Uppsala municipality. She collaborate with city planning in Uppsala within work package 1 Dialogues in governance for sustainability.

What do you work with?

I belong to the sustainability department at the municipal management office. As a development leader I work with issues such as segregation. I have also worked with the coordination of the municipality's area work in Gottsunda/Valsätra, through what is called the Action Plan Gottsunda/Valsätra.

How did you get in contact with Mistra Environmental Communication?  

In the work in Gottsunda/Valsätra, participation is an important target area and something that is under development. My colleague was looking for knowledge in this area and thus found Martin Westin who leads the work package that is about power and dialogues.

What does the collaboration with Mistra Environmental Communication mean in practice? 

The collaboration has involved mutual knowledge creation where we have met on a number of occasions and exchanged experiences with each other. We at the municipality have shared how we work with dialogues and participation and selected examples of how this has been implemented. The researchers have collected this information for their studies and at the same time shared their scientific knowledge about dialogues and power.

We have also through workshops discussed and reflected on dialogues and explored different ways to structure that conversation. Through this, we contribute to the research but also get to see the results. This collaboration means that there is a close relationship between research and practice and it is very exciting to have the opportunity to work in that way. Our collaboration has been going on for just over a year. I feel that this collaboration has grown out of mutual interest and based on the needs that exist. We participate in each other's events and workshops and it feels like there is a natural dialogue.

How do you look at the future collaboration with Mistra Environmental Communication? 

I believe that we will not only continue our collaboration but also develop it. We want to be involved in creating new knowledge about dialogue and participation and contribute to making analyzes of the existing knowledge.

We are doing development work on participation and dialogue where we want to work more strategically and knowledge-based. In my area, other actors like the civil society also wants to create dialogue with the citizens. What do these different forums look like? How do they relate to each other? How do people become involved in different phases? The goal is to increase knowledge of how participation and dialogues are carried out in different ways and to have a more stable and unified foundation to stand on.

I hope that this collaboration will continue in the longer term.

How do you think about the concept environmental communication?

I think that communication in a broader sense is about participation and talking to people. To have conversations about how the world develops and should develop.


Portrait photo of a man, photo.Martin Westin

Researcher at SLU