Nordic Baltic policy statement
Statement aiming to strengthen relationships with countries in the Nordic and Baltic regions by promoting policy exchange and collaboration.
Experience so far
The original Nordic Baltic Policy Statement launched in 2014 has been a useful tool in encouraging connections and shaping engagement with the region. Organisations such as Nordic Horizons have been instrumental in promoting these links to broader civic society, while Ministers and policy makers within the Scottish Government have enhanced cooperation through facilitating inward and outward visits, policy research and evaluations and utilising formal and informal networks. This document highlights case studies showcasing examples across a variety of policy areas.
Case Study Two:
Developing Links on architecture, the built environment and community engagement
The Scottish Government’s Architecture and Place Team has developed strong links with counterpart organisations in Denmark as a result of the Nordic/Baltic Strategy.
In October 2015, the Chief Architect chaired a Nordic Horizons Workshop at the Scottish Government’s offices on the work of GivRum, a Copenhagen based third-sector organisation, which specialises in renovating redundant and derelict buildings for community and cultural uses. GivRum operates a knowledge exchange network entitled ‘CityLink’ and aims to connect communities at a local, national and transnational level to strengthen social cohesion by bringing together practitioners in cultural development, architects and others to focus on city-wide challenges through talks, exhibitions and events. Edinburgh was the host city for a CityLink programme organised by GivRum (also sponsored by Edinburgh City Council) with a range of collaborators in Edinburgh.
Scottish Government officials have maintained close links with GivRum, leading to their participation in the ‘Seeding Success’ conference organised by Architecture and Design Scotland (A+ DS). The event at Paisley Town Hall highlighted work undertaken by communities across Scotland on the Government funded ‘Stalled Spaces Scotland’ programme, a 2014 legacy project which has been rolled out by A+ DS. A ‘Stalled Spaces Scotland’ toolkit was launched at the event to help other communities and local authorities to develop their own projects to bring life back into stalled or vacant spaces. There are therefore close parallels with the work of GivRum in Copenhagen.
GivRum have now invited the Scottish Government and other Scottish partners to participate in the next CityLink festival in Copenhagen in September 2017. Scottish participants will present on the ‘Place Standard’, a Scottish Government tool for engagement on place community development (alongside other partners A+ DS and NHS Health Scotland). The Place Standard tool is transforming the way community engagement is undertaken and is attracting significant international interest. Taking part in the ‘CityLink’ event in Copenhagen in September provides an excellent opportunity to showcase the Place Standard as well as furthering our wider commitments to promote community empowerment and engage on key policies with our Nordic partners in line with this policy statement.
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