“Innovation is often born out of interaction” – Annie Lindmark, Vinnova

Sweden is one of the world’s most innovative nations – with a No.1 EU ranking in 2018 for the fourth consecutive year. However, it is important to keep on innovating to stay ahead in our fast moving society. At Tank Meeting #48 at Vinnova on December 3rd – 4th we will explore how we can help strengthen Sweden’s innovation capacity together. Paricipants will also learn more about the new innovation method ‘Missions’.

We’ve spoken with Annie Lindmark, Programme Manager at Vinnova with a focus on emerging technologies, open innovation and innovative SME:s. She has lead the work from Vinnova’s side together with Innovation Pioneers in preparing the upcoming Tank Meeting.

–  Innovation is needed throughout the whole of society to contend with social challenges and to strengthen Sweden’s competitiveness, explains Annie Lindmark when asked about the importance of innovation.

It often takes many years before investments in research and innovation have an impact on the economy and society as a whole, according to Lindmark. This is because it takes time for new knowledge and new ideas to be translated into finished products, services or production methods.

– It also takes time before they reach a market or are disseminated and have positive impacts. What we do today lays the foundation on which Sweden’s future prosperity and societal development depend on and that is also why it is so important to continuously work with strengthen Sweden’s innovation capacity in different aspects.


Vinnova helps to build Sweden’s innovation capacity. They do this mainly by funding research and innovation projects, but also by coordinating strategic initiatives, collaborating with actors across all sectors and shining a light on inspiring solutions and ideas. In short, Vinnova helps to prepare Sweden for the future.

– We identify areas where our efforts can make a difference, and we create opportunities and incentives for organisations to work together to meet important societal challenges. Our support gives companies and organisations the opportunity to experiment and test new ideas before they become profitable.

A strong driver for Vinnova and the work that the agency conducts are the UN Global Goals. Enhancing sustainable innovation is key going forward, explains Lindmark.

– We base all our work on the global sustainability development goals of the 2030 Agenda adopted by the United Nations. Social challenges are a driving force for us. Our efforts are aimed at developing new solutions to major social challenges. Challenges are an important driver for innovation. 

What are Vinnova hoping to get out of meeting with Innovation Pioneers’ initiators and members during the tank meeting? 

– Innovation is often born out of interaction! When knowledge and skills from different areas interact and where organization’s learn from each other, that’s when we come up with the best solutions. For this reason, most of our efforts are about stimulating collaborations, getting different parties to work together to develop new solutions.

– And that is also our hopes for this day; that it will be a great exchange of knowledge between the participants and us at Vinnova and that we together can talk about how we can help strengthen Sweden’s innovation capacity. We also hope that the day will give everyone some new ways of thinking of innovation and what our focus going forward should be – and of course we hope that it will be a fun, interactive and interesting day!

What can participants expect from Tank Meeting #48?  

– By participating, you will gain insight of how Vinnova is working, what our new method called missions is all about (learn more about ‘Missions’ in the latest podcast episode from Vinnova [in Swedish]), what we are doing nationally and internationally and what areas that we are focusing on right now. We will also ask the participants to be engaged, come with inputs and be part of answering the quest of the day; How can we strengthen Sweden’s innovation capacity?

At Tank Meeting #48 on December 3rd – 4th at Vinnova in Stockholm we will explore how we can help strengthen Sweden’s innovation capacity. Read more and sign up here.

Selection of our Initiators & Members