Young Academy of Sweden started in 2011 with the view to gain research-political influence, promote interdisciplinary cooperation and to reach out and raise the position of science in society. Anyone who wishes to apply as a member, must have had their theses defense no more than 10 years ago.
– It was nine years since mine, so I thought this was my last chance and applied, says Rikard Landberg.
The first selection is based on the scientific view to cull truly talented researchers. Thereafter, aspirants are called for an interview to filter people with the right drive as well as a national, gender and scientific profileration. After a while, the message came that Rikard Landberg had been elected as one of the eight new members in Young Academy of Sweden.
– I was very pleased of course, because obviously it is a recognition of my work! But I am also very pleased that food science and nutrition are represented for the first time. I am working hard to raise the status of my subject and to make sure that the research conducted is to be of the highest degree, says Rikard Landberg.
The members are assigned for five years and are replaced successively, which means that the academy is constantly renewed while there are always seniors. So far, the academy has been touring with career seminars at universities, pushing the issue of Assistant University Lecturer, visiting schools, having round table discussions with the Swedish Research Council and handing out the "For Women in Science" Prize. They meet on two occasions every six months and the members are included in committees and groups of themes where engaging is important.
– I see opportunities to influence particularly by working towards the whole political machinery. For example, discussing strategic and research relevant initiatives with groups of parliament, talking about how to distribute the money and how Sweden should invest, says Rikard Landberg. I think the Young Academy of Sweden has a great influence, including as a consultation body. And of course, it is important not only for me, but also for Chalmers, to be represented in an independent organization of young, committed researchers.
Rikard Landberg is looking forward to the cooperation with the other members
– I will enjoy the interaction with all those engaged and talented researchers who are so committed! And I also look forward to gaining transparency from other research areas. Another important role for the academy is to come out and talk with younger people, already at an undergraduate level, about what it's like to be a researcher and to show how it can be done so that more people open their eyes for research, instead of them going straight to the industry. That is something I want to contribute to.How will you celebrate?
– I have already celebrated! A glass of champagne when I got the good news and then during the Academy anniversary meeting. I am very glad to have such great prerequisites and the best chance to conduct the research I want.
Text: Helena Österling af Wåhlberg
Photo: Martina Butorac
Philippe Tassin, associate professor of Physics at Chalmers, as also elected to the Academy at the same time. Read more about him here