Monday, 28 October 2013

Light Up Tromsø - Business Innovation for Tromsø

View of Tromsø

We spent almost one week in Tromsø, Norway in fall 2013. Vidar Alvarstein & Kirsten Zachariassen from University of Tromsø, Business School, Norway organised for us an intensive course of the Nordplus Nordic and Baltic Business Innovation Network together with the coordinator of the network Pirkko Varis from Tampere University of Applied Sciences (TAMK). Students, organisers and staff members from Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Lithuania and Norway joined the intensive week. From TAMK, Finland seven business students took part in the intensive course “Business Innovation Focussed on Experience-based Products/Services”. Altogether 25 students and 7 staff members joined the intensive course.

Walking over the bridge in Tromsø

On Saturday we travelled to Tromsø, where we met other Nordic and Baltic students.

Here some thoughts of the Danish team in the beginning of the intensive course: “It is Saturday, September 14th, and the sun is shining. We are four males and a female from Denmark and we are preparing to meet the rest of the participants of the intensive course. It is the first time we have travelled this far up north and it is the first time we will work with other students from the Nordic and Baltic countries. We have been looking forward to this for a long time and now we are finally here!”

A view of Tromsø

Students from Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Lithuania and Norway uphill

Danish students enjoying mountains

The network coordinator Pirkko with some intensive course students
On Saturday we had a welcoming evening and we could get acquainted with each other and spend some time in a nice atmosphere. On Sunday we did a city walk in Tromsø to get familiar with the city as part of our assignment. On Monday we had presentations of all the countries and study programmes taking part in this course. Afterwards we were divided into teams and we visited in teams Jekta in order to learn something new about each other and the business environment development in Tromsø. In the afternoon we had a presentation on presentation technique given by Vidar Alvarstein and we worked in teams in Creativity DTLab. The representatives of the DTLab Frederico Lozano and Håvar Brattli were very enthusiastic and motivating persons and we really enjoyed these sessions a lot.

Students in Monday presentations

Students from 3 countries in Monday presentations


Pirkko Varis, Frederico Lozano and Vidar Alvarstein in DTLab

Teams in DTLab with Håvar Brattli and Frederico Lozano

A team working in DTLab

Some activities in DTLab

On Tuesday morning we were given the assignment by Tromsø Chamber of Commerce to do business and marketing innovations for the city of Tromsø in order to have more customers and tourists to the downtown business area and businesses of the city. On Tuesday and Wednesday we were working hard in our teams and finalized our ideas.

A presentation of innovations

One team presentation

Another team presentation

Leif Henriksen and Kristo Krumm giving feedback to teams

The happy winning team
On Thursday our presentations took place. All the teams did great work. On Thursday evening we had a wonderful closing ceremony offered by University of Tromsø, Business School with several appetizers and refreshments. We congratulated the winners, thanked the organisers and students, took a lot of pictures and headed to downtown to continue our last evening together. On Friday afternoon we left Tromsø with all wonderful memories we got here.

Northern lights

Danish students and Northern lights
Here some thoughts of the Danish team in the end of the intensive course: “For almost a week we have worked together and enjoyed the company with the other students. It was both fun to see how other students work, but just as fun to hear about their lives back home. Even though we have considered the countries to be close to each other, the differences were greater than suspected.”

In addition, some more comments from Morten Risom Nielsen: “One of the really great things about this year's host country was the many mountains - something we are not used to in Denmark! We used almost all of our spare time on hiking, which gave us a lot of amazing experiences. One evening we were lucky to witness the "Northern Lights" - one of the most beautiful views we have ever seen! I was one member of the winning team and our idea Light Up Tromsø was considered as best idea. I am sure that the main reason for this was because we had a really good team spirit and spent many fun hours together. When we were announced as the winners, these following hours got even greater.”

Tromsø in the night

Danish team members and free time
Students from Vytautas Magnus University, Faculty of Economics and Management, Lithuania share their thoughts of the intensive course and time in Tromsø:

Dominykas Graibus: “For me this program was a great step forward. Working on one task and spending time with students from different countries was very interesting and of course funny. I am very pleased that we were given a chance to contribute in making Tromsø even a better city. I am looking forward in going back to this beautiful city to see what we have done.”

Jonė Tamylaitytė: “This project was an amazing opportunity to meet different people with their extraordinary ideas. We had some exciting lectures during project period and it was very useful. In addition, the sessions in DT lab were something completely new for me. During these sessions we had some challenges and it was a very energetic spirit whole time. All in all I had extremely interesting time and a lot of new experiences. Moreover, I met new friends and I believe we will keep in touch for a long time.Thank you for a so well organised event, warm hospitality and such a pleasant time!”

Asta Bagdonaitė: “Participation in Nordplus programme in Tromsø was a huge experience in learning new ways of communication, getting in touch with different people, getting to know other cultures and also having a very good time. This programme gave an amazing opportunity to express and share ideas, to communicate with students from different cultures, to cope with exciting and challenging tasks and get to know Norway from its best side.”

Indrė Vitkutė: “It was a super amazing experience. It is by far the best experience I've ever had. I had the best week of the lifetime. I feel really grateful for the people who have supported me on this journey, I want to say thank you for all project organizers for giving me possibility to attend this intensive course. I had the best 7 days of my life and I can't thank enough for giving me the opportunity to get this experience, for chance to visit such a beautiful city as Tromsø and make my dream to see Aurora come true. The intensive course finished in just a blink... I will never forget my first this kind of an event abroad.”

Text: Danish and Lithuanian student teams

Photos:Monika Didžgalvytė, Vytautas Magnus University, Faculty of Economics and Management, Lithuania, Asger Thomsen, The University of Southern Denmark, Faculty of Engineering, Denmark, Pirkko Varis, Tampere University of Applied Sciences, Finland

The following institutions are members of the Nordplus Nordic and Baltic Business Innovation Network:

Tampere University of Applied Sciences (TAMK), Business, Finland

The University of Southern Denmark, Faculty of Engineering, Denmark

Tallinn College of Tallinn University of Technology, Business, Estonia

University of Tromsø, Business School, Norway

Vytautas Magnus University, Faculty of Economics and Management, Kaunas, Lithuania

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