Christina Östergren, Initiator and Co-Founder of IntersectionPoint:
In 2009, I was struck by a deep frustration. We have to hand over a better world to our children and grand-children, I thought to myself. The transition toward a sustainable society was moving too slowly, yet there were so many parallel initiatives in the city of Gothenburg, Sweden, and the world, all trying to achieve similar goals – a sustainable and better world. However, these initiatives were not interacting. I felt if we could only cooperate, exchange ideas, and learn from each other, we could achieve so much more.
This frustration gave birth to IntersectionPoint – World Innovation Challenge, a vision of a new type of world summit, inspired by Davos, Tällberg, and Almedalen, but also very different. I wanted to see an action-oriented forum, where innovation, entrepreneurship, and real cooperation would drive change, as opposed to just discussion.
Being an entrepreneur myself, I understand and value the immense capacity of the entrepreneurial spirit, and what passionate people with ideas can achieve. In fact, Archidea, the architecture firm that I am CEO of, and founded 1991, has long applied a policy when hiring where we look more for the right personalities and attitudes, rather than only fulfillment of knowledge requirements or professional merits.
This hiring practice led to an influx of new competence and different expertise. Our solutions became more creative, and it was extremely stimulating working across functional fields this way. Today we are a firm with architects, interior and light designers, gardeners, historic conservationists, as well as, material and business development specialists.
When I later presented my vision of IntersectionPoint at a social event, a friend came up to me and said: “Sounds like you have read The Medici Effect! I had not, but I quickly went to buy and read the book. I can only describe the experience of reading the book as “coming home”. The author of the Medici effect, Frans Johansson, writes that “diversity drives innovation”. I felt that this was SO true, and that this was the same principle on which Archidea had successfully been operating.
Since 2011, The Medici Group, the innovation consulting firm, founded by Frans Johansson, is an active partner of IntersectionPoint.
Other milestones in the history of IntersectionPoint includes when Ulf Tengroth, leadership development consultant at KKIKK, became my colleague, and together we officially founded IntersectionPoint AB. And, today the organization has evolved into a social business association with several companies as founding members.
In 2013, IntersectionPoint, in partnership with The Medici Group, executed a pilot of the summit IntersectionPoint – World Innovation Challenge. I had an idea around the intersections of Cities, Culture, and Climate as a theme, which I wanted to explore, and so we did. This concept which I call “the 3Cs” is an area that interests me personally as an architect with a strong interest in sustainable urban development. But, IntersectionPoint, as an organization, is a platform for any and all initiatives which contribute to a better world – socially, ecologically, and economically.
Through the concept of “diversity drives innovation”, we can be inspired and learn from each other, and make a social impact through new insights and collaborations, as well as new ideas for products and services. This is what IntersectionPoint is about.
I invite you to browse this website to find out more about us. And do not hesitate to contact us, we want to hear from you!