'Sweden is a culture of early adopters'
Publish date: 3 November 2020
Martin Falk moved from Germany to Norrköping and works at Linköpings Universitet in a department where Swedish people are the minority. His colleagues come from Germany, India, Iran, Lithuania, USA and Slovenia.
Q: What is unique about Norrköping?
The nature! You can walk for a day in nature and not see anyone. I like being outdoors and over my time here I’ve gotten used to this type of open nature, it’s quite a change from Germany. I actually miss it when I go back to Germany.
Q: What is the difference between your studies in Germany and here?Academically they are similar, but here there is no artificial hierarchy. You might have different titles but I feel like we are the same page when we talk.
Q: Are Swedish people innovative?
For sure, Swedish people are more innovative than in other countries. Sweden is a culture of early adopters but it comes also from supporting startups. From the University - supporting you every step of the way if you want to create a startup company. They give you time off, they support you - it’s easier here.
Q: What is it like to start a company here in Sweden?
It’s really easy to start a company here in Sweden, it take less than an afternoon - and congratulations you have a company!
Q: What are the difference between social services in Germany and Sweden?Here it’s actually appreciated if you take parental leave as a man. It’s more equal opportunities here, so that’s a plus.
Q: If someone told you they were thinking of moving to Sweden, what would you say? Would you recommend it?
I actually did that last week. If the person loves nature you just show them a couple pictures of the countryside - that’s easy. If they are more of a city person I would recommend moving to Stockholm. If you’re planning on having a family - then definitely Sweden! The work-life balance here is really highly rated.
Q: What are your favorites parts of Nörrköping?
Don’t miss walking along Strömmen, the local river here, and if you go outside the city, don’t miss the nature reserve. And if possible come here both in the Winter and the Summer as it’s totally different. In the Summer you can go walking through the lush forests, swim in the lakes, maybe even the sea. Or if you go a bit South you can go swimming in the archipelago. In Winter the water freezes over and you can go ice skating on lakes or the seas, which I have never done before in another country.
Q: What Swedish things do you miss when you’re abroad?
I love the snow, and I look forward to the snow. I remember my first month here, I moved here in October and I remember the first fall and winter here as really bright and sunny. I was out every weekend and we had blue skies until the middle of December. That might be something special about Nörrköping. As soon as the sun comes out, Swedish people are outside. You suddenly see a lot of people out on their lunch break strolling in the park or running.
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