Since several years back, Helio and Gather are working together with a shared vision about creating a better city for everyone. The Gather festival is the innovation and inspirations festival that with its mix of speakers, topics and workshops can be seen as a Swedish version of SXSW. For 2020, there will be a new location for the festival, time of the year, theme and much more. We had a chat with Jakob Grandin, founder and initiative taker for Gather.
It’s great to be able to work with you again in 2020. And the new changes are very exciting. First question – who do you think should go to Gather 2020?
Same to you. Helio adds an extra safe zone for us to be able to feel at home the rest of the year.
Gather is for those who want to challenge themselves by meeting differences – future, past and present in a new exciting and presence building format. It is for those who work with today’s issues. Many believe that it has to be a specific topic that needs to bind the person, but it’s the diversity and the things that you did not already know that will be the key in your development. You will get the chance to meet these differences both in terms of knowledge, personalities and bodies.
Why have you split up the festival in different blocks this year?
We want to create a more collected focus on our three main parts. Allow these to blossom each on their own. This mainly stems from wanting to create bigger result in our labs. That’s why they need to get the time and engagement in order to show their force. The conference on its own has always been a force of its own where the main interest has been around the speaker programs. Gather Weekender will become the crescendo to end the whole week. The move in May is in order to create a better starting point for Gather’s music portion. We noticed that September might not be the best month for waking Stockholm up as a clubbing town.
Tell us why you think that Gather Green is important as one of the blocks of the festival?
Gather Green becomes a clear anchor along with our move to the Slakthus-area. As we become a part of the food destination that will be created there, it feels sustainable, and food is an essential part of Gather. Gather has always had a sustainable approach through the themes but this year it feels even more important to focus on sustainability and climate is given its own space.
You are still pretty secretive with most things, is there anything you want to reveal that we haven’t read in the media?
Most things will be revealed in the upcoming weeks. Our goal is to start revealing all the contents on a board, starting in March. This year will host a magical lineup of speakers with a big focus on the present and where we are right now. With everything from fantastic creators, scientists, artists and entrepreneurs.
What kind of impact do you want to have on society with the festival in the future?
We want to be able to prove that we can bring differences together and that they will in fact give way to change. We want to bring with us enterprises, academics, civil society and the public sector and create the opportunity for a concrete development within the community borders. Concrete means that we want Gather to be seen as a safe space to create and develop within. To take in the unknown and open up to change. This is not something that happens over night or even over one festival. We will need a community and a platform to do this.