The course is run from Konstfack’s  DIV Institute; Design, Interior design, and Visual communication. Course leader: Konstfack-Cheryl Akner Koler, Professor in Aesthetics at Konstfack, University College of Arts, Crafts and Design, in collaboration with John Thackara who is our international expert in food systems, and Annika Göran Rodell an expert in sustainable leadership and will be facilitating the U-theory process.  Annika is from Örebro University, Campus Grythyttan School of Hospitality, Culinary Arts &Meal Science.

John Thackara, a world–known design expert on sustainable development and social innovation & director of Doors of Perception. For more than thirty years John Thackara has traveled the world in his search of stories about the practical steps taken by communities to realize a sustainable future. He writes about these stories online, and in books; he uses them in talks for cities, and business; he also organizes festivals and events that bring the subjects of these stories together. John will be working with an economic them in relation to food systems. We recommend reading his book: How To Thrive In The Next Economy and his previous book was the best-selling In the Bubble: Designing In A Complex World. John organizes conferences and festivals in which designers and social innovators share knowledge.

Link to John’s   twitter

  Cheryl Akner Koler (course leader) is a sculptor, design educator, and Professor in Theoretical and Applied Aesthetics at Konstfack since 2001. She teaches a sculptural gestalt approach that involves embodied studies, aesthetic abstractions, and product semiotic.  She held a 4-year guest professorship at Campus Gryhyttan, School of hospitality, culinary arts, and meal science at Örebro University where she worked with the culinary artist in developing their profile in aesthetics and haptics. Cheryl is also the main project leader of the HAPTICA project; a 3-year research project funded by the Swedish Research Council.  Some aims of the HAPTICA project are: 1) Offering insight into the complexity of human haptic perception through following artistic researchers in how haptics can drive the aesthetic gestalt process. 2) Exploring ways to bridge haptic pathways through our hands with haptic experiences of smell and taste through our nose and mouth. Cheryl’s homepageHAPTICA website Email: and Mob: +46702798376

Örebro University, Campus Grythyttan School of Hospitality, Culinary Arts &Meal Science, The unique academic, multi-disciplinary profile brings together professional and academically merited culinary artists with long experience in the aesthetic gestalt process as well as researchers from the learning & life sciences.  We collaborate with

  Annika Göran Rodell a lecturer in hospitality, culinary arts, and meal science at Campus Grythyttan, Örebro University, an expert in sustainable leadership and founder of sångshyttan art. She is involved in developing course structure that follows the Theory U process.   Annika is a performance artist with years of experience in orchestrating creative events and conferences. Her multidisciplinary background with studies in meal experience knowledge and hospitality, expressive arts therapy, pedagogy, and leadership contributes to wide-ranging research interest,  with an aesthetic foundation. She is also a central member of the HAPTICA research team working on a three-year project in collaboration with Konstfack, funded by the Swedish Research Council.  Email: / Mob: 070 333 41 48

  VÄRT is a sustainable food lab/design studio that runs team-building events, workshops, education, lectures.  For the past 4 years, we have been a strong force in Gothenburg exploring methods that are a little unconventional where we use food waste as a tool to understand circular economy and sustainability. Corina Akner is the founder of VÄRT and will be supporting us in food labs based on VÄRT design approach and haptic experiences. Corina is a designer with a focus on inclusive designVÄRT

Anna Maria Orrù work is embedded in biomimicry and nature-inspired design. Everywhere in her practice, she looks to provide solutions to tackle the climate emergency. Based in Sweden and Italy, she holds a PhD in Architecture & Artistic Research from Chalmers University of Technology (Wild Poethics – exploring relational and embodied practices in urban-making’  2017). She is a guest associate professor at Konstfack in the Design program and lectures/ teaches at numerous Swedish Universities that include KTH and Chalmers as well as international universities and companies. As co-founder of Nordic Biomimicry, she directs the center that dedicates itself to collaborate with nature as a mentor, measure and method. In her practice, she is a mediator of sustainability, both by situating herself between academia, research, and companies and as an editor of an art-book press called Vegetable Lamb Press. To further underpin her service to ’nature’, she is a beekeeper and takes care of a biodynamic vineyard and olive grove.


Main local partners are:

  Ellen Mulderij & Rudy Hobbenschot run their family sheep ranch in the heart of Hjulsjö.  They have been key partners in generously supporting the Back to the Land 2.0 summer course. They have been our main support in working with the hjulsjö community, making it possible to adapt the missions house to our needs as well as arranging camping facilities and lodging.  They will share their ranching lifestyle with us and work with a group and other members of the hjulsjö community to create the main meal experience for the village feast on Friday.


    Magnus  & Märta Westling work together on their conservation cultivation project and Hjulsjö 103 cafe.  Magnus is Ph.D. student at Örebro University, Campus Grythyttan School of Hospitality, Culinary Arts &Meal Science. Magnus will share his eco gardening knowledge with us and lead a group in exploring the taste and haptic experience of Swedish heritage food, starting with a humbly grey pea. His  PhD-project is to develop gastronomic design combined with using sensory evaluation on the basis of cultivated diversity in order to evaluate traditional varieties functioning in culinary practices and meals. Both Magnus and Märta seek to investigate the gastronomic potential of traditional food varieties.  Their approach enables us to learn about environmental sustainability, meal culture, craftsmanship, traditions, and biodiversity in food production and consumption from the discussion table to the dining table. Link

Christina Schaffer   has one foot in academia, with a background in Systems Ecology, and has 18 years of experience of inter- and transdisciplinary environmental studies, and is now a part time teacher on sustainable development and urban agriculture at Stockholm University. She has also a practical background in organic farming and entrepreneurship. Lives part time in Kopparberg (close to Hjulsjö) practicing small scale farming for self subsistence purpose which includes growing of fruits, nuts and vegetables, sheep farming and bee hiving mixed with a lot of harvesting from the surrounding forest. She is inparticular interested in applied agroecology and has created a forest garden as a part of a national pilot research project at Örebro University. This became a platform for her own PhD project which includes the exploration of the possibilities for edible forest gardens in urban areas. She is one of the initiators of the urban agriculture community in Stockholm, with experience from starting up several gardens. She is also interested in science communication and has been involved in exhibitions such as “Manna” on our food systems dependency on natural ecosystems, “Tipping Points” at Kulturhuset , Stockholm, and she has designed the urban garden “Odla Staden” ongoing at Naturhistoriska riksmuseet, Stockholm.

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