Housing Innovation

Housing innovation from the bottom up: Creating co-housing and co-living for economically vulnerable groups

There is a severe lack of affordable housing in Sweden impacting on living conditions for groups with weaker economy. With this initiative, we will learn from and further develop these projects and their collective knowledge, in order to concretely create affordable co-building and co-housing. 

Funder: Vinnova.
Budget: 3,8 million SEK.
Time period: Nov 2021–Apr 2026.

Case study area: To begin implementation of programs for co-building housing for economically weak groups in one or more Swedish municipalities. 


Jaan-Henrik Kain, Project leader, University of Gothenburg
Jenny Stenberg, University of Gothenburg
Anders Ramstrand, Bitti Alvin, Marianne Johansson, Jonas Ryberg, Malin Rönström, Söderhamn municipality
Maria Nordström, Amanda Öhr, Malin Åhman, Stenbacken housing and work cooperative
Kenneth Bolinder, Hälsinge mureri
Jesper Bryngelsson, John-Åke Nilsson, Union of Tenants
Kenneth Berglund, Human Geography Stockholm
Tinna Harling, Anna Berglund, Egnahemsfabriken Tjörn
John Areblad, Kanvassfilm


Ny bok

En film om Gården i Uppsala

Kommer inom kort

Back in Söderhamn

7-8 March 2024 we came back to Söderhamn. In the two years that had passed since we all met here in the Norra staden, a lot had happened. Stenbacken’s residents and work cooperatives were now ready to submit a Leader application with the aim of building a business on the empty gravel plot in front of Stenbacken, where there used to be residential buildings from the million program era. It is an advantageous place to build on as it has a detailed plan and there is already water and sewage laid out. The vision is to build a large greenhouse/orangery and also develop the place for locally grown food that will be used in a cafe and restaurant business where the residents of Stenbacken can work.

In addition to two employees at Stenbacken, the chairman of the board as well as Hälsinge masonry and a representative from the Union of Tenants participated, all with equal energy and a positive view on the future. Three civil servants and one politician participated from the municipality. This group also contributed a lot of energy and optimism about finding ways forward in a rather difficult time for the municipality with depopulation and a lack of resources. It was striking how close and positive cooperation exists between the municipality and civil society. Those of us who came from the outside were researchers from University of Gothenburg, Human Geography Stockholm, Egnahemsfabriken at Tjörn and Kanvassfilm.

The municipality is making a planning program for Norra Staden, and the research project’s workshop was about analyzing locations and proposing types of buildings with the potential to create collaborative housing for economically vulnerable groups in society – which is the focus of the project. The workshop started from the location of Stenbacken as a central energy point and then gradually broadened the views. The results are compiled and used both in the municipality’s planning program and in Stenbacken’s Leader application. There will also be a film about the Stenbacken cooperative and Norra staden.

Three new books

Study visits Tanum Orust Gothenburg

Government Inquiry

Presentation 2022-04-25 of Government Inquiry by Karolina Skog: Socially sustainable housing (Swedish).