The workshop titled “Unity in Diversity! Cultivating Inclusive Excellence” was sponsored by the Media, Management, and Transformation Center (MMTC), with Dr. Sumaya Hashim, Prof. Leona Achtenhagen, and Katarina Blåman leading the charge. Greta was also involved in the workshop’s planning and witnessed the behind-the-scenes process of this event coming together. It was a great experience to witness a community of engaged colleagues working together with warmth and laughter to make a truly unique event come together.

Dr. Gober presented the project on behalf of herself and Prof. Anna Jupowicz-Ginalska. The talk, titled “From Polyphony to Epistemology: Rethinking Newsroom Diversity,” argued that while including diverse voices (polyphony) enriches newsrooms, a deeper challenge remains: leveraging this diversity to enhance the knowledge base of journalism itself (epistemology).

The talk was delivered during the first session, which besides Greta featured Anna Mårtensson, a public prosecutor and educator from Jönköping, and Anna Edstedt, Head of Q By Consid, and a very patient and wise facilitator, Dr. Joaquín Cestino from MMTC. The time the team took to prepare for the session — patiently learning about each other’s work, to understand how their contributions aligned — was a true showcase of the session’s title “Innovation Unleashed: The Power of Inclusive Organizing.” We all loved the experience, as it truly exemplified the collaborative spirit and innovation that can be achieved through inclusive organizing!

In the second session on “The New Workforce Paradigm in the Nordics: Navigating Diversity for Success,” Rosa A. Indenbaum generously shared her wisdom, experience, and very concrete tools she uses to manage a truly diverse team at Trase – Intelligence for sustainable trade (without a dedicated budget – she stressed). Rosa reminded everyone that diversity and inclusion start with self-awareness and unlearning. Sandra Subel, who came to Jönköping all the way from Berlin, shared her experience and successes from the large-scale DEIB work she has been involved with as Global Head of D&I Strategy with Axel Springer. The session was moderated by Prof. Timur Uman from MMTC.

The third session on “Investing in Diversity: A Blueprint for an Inclusive Economy” featured two powerful presenters: Nora Bavey, a General Partner and Co-founder of Unconventional Ventures (UV) Accelerator – First digital accelerator for diverse founders, and Evelina Anttila, Founder & Investor Wellstreet, VC firm dedication to their partners, and commitment to sustainability. A very illuminating session, where the speakers argued why we need financial ecosystems that support diverse founders. The session was moderated by Dr. Anna Nordén from JIBS.

The day started with a pre-recorded talk from Paulina Brandberg, Minister for Gender Equality and Working Life. The talk was titled: “Women’s Wallets: A Speech on Economic Equality and Action.” All three main assumptions made by the Minister were challenged by the discussant, Prof. Helene Ahl from the School of Education and Communication, Jönköping University, who argued with the support of data why the debate on gender and entrepreneurship needs innovation to escape the dead end it currently finds itself in. Dr. Emilia Florin Samuelsson from MMTC moderated the session.

The Keynote session featured Petter Björkebäck from The Village, JIBS Practitioner in Residence, who building on his years of work for IKEA as Senior People & Culture Leader delivered a talk on “Inclusive design – Nothing is Neutral.” The session also featured Dr. Marcela Ramirez Pasillas and was moderated by Dr. Thomas Cyron, both from MMTC.

The key takeaway from the event: while most of us agree that in order to thrive and grow as individuals, companies, or societies, we need people who are different from us to challenge us and reveal the world’s complexity and beauty, we must now understand what inclusion truly entails. The workshop provided that much needed platform to start insightful discussions, share practical tools, and new perspectives on fostering diversity, inclusion, and innovation across various industries, emphasizing the transformative power of collaborative and inclusive approaches in navigating today’s complex societal and organizational landscapes.

Pictures below and a short video from the event, prepared by Oskar Elvin, can be seen here.