To be honest I wondered at first what on earth we were doing there: it seemed a bit like a hippy-ish community lived there, and it, well, didn't seem like the most appropriate place to generate ideas on social change (and much less on developing them). The tour of the premises that we were given as we arrived - and which included a stop at the Circus school housed on the premises - seemed to confirm my first impression.
But as it turned out, Subtopia wasn't really a place - it was an idea. The name, by the way, stands for Spacious Suburban Paradise: you get the hint... Housed in a suburb of Stockholm, the project attempts to assist in the idea generation process by providing both the physical means - think office space - and the generalistic and specialised thematic training and support.
The result? In the space of a few years, more than 50 projects have found at Subtopia a home, creating, producing, creating change in society.
Our session was a hands-on idea development on, where we worked on developing our project ideas through a very simple and intelligent process:
The process to find the headlines, main themes, images even that would go in that article was both very enjoyable - as well as quite difficult.
Because in effect, the question is - 'in 10 words, what's the main takeaways of your project?'
I appreciated the opportunity to think of our project in those terms. A solid structure needs to underline the conclusions, so we needed to think about that too. The precursory phase of the project took shape before us - I am not sure if we really developed it or if it made itself obvious, in a sort of reverse engineering of the conclusions working upwards.
In effect, one of the most enjoyable - and efficient -days since the beginning of the programme. Kudos to the Subtopia team, Jonas, Henrik, and the others!
The workday was followed by an amazing Cirkus Cirkor performance - probably more on that later - and a party, the details of which shall remain in deep secrecy. :)