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Previous innovation projects at the Joint Faculties of Humanities and Theology

The Joint Faculties of Humanities and Theology encourage and support the development of ideas that can become new innovations. Here are the projects funded in 2021 and 2022.

Funded innovation projects in 2022

Scale-up of research based learning support in early mathematics

Agneta Gulz, Professor at Cognitive Science

Many school students do not succeed in mathematics, and research shows that one of the most powerful efforts to seek to change this is to support preschool children's opportunities to develop their conceptual understanding of what is sometimes called early mathematicsMagical Garden combines a digital play-&-learn game in early mathematics with resources intended to strengthen and train educators and help them support the children who use the game.

The focus of this project is to investigate possibilities of scaling up the use of Magical Garden.

The game as such has been used for research and studies for more than ten years. Recently a controlled comparative intervention study also demonstrated its compensatory potential. During those years the game has also been continuously further developed in interaction with preschool teachers and preschool children. The resource package for educators has existed since 2019 and includes resources to: follow the development of the group of children and individual children through the game; be able to provide special interventions to children who have difficulties with different themes; learn more about early math in text- and film-formats; get ideas about early math non-digital games and activities.

The Magical Garden package is unique in its kind and there is reason to believe a wider use of it in Swedish preschools can create value for i) individual children (future school children) and ii) society (given the correlation of math success and school success overall).

In the project two people from our team devote time to prepare for the planned upscaling, such as: familiarizing ourselves with how to sell this type of solution to the public sector to ensure that a deployment with maintenance and support. A prerequisite for scaling up is, furthermore, to go from a web application to a downloadable app. Another goal is to establish cooperation with a partner for a new recording of all voices for the game – in Swedish, English and Arabic.



Emil Hilton Saggau, Researcher at Centre for Theology and Religious Studies

Hospitality is a transnational concept that people often intuitively understand. The German philosopher used this concept to explain the possible way for humas towards perpetual peace, because hospitality is a borderless and unconditional welcome to a stranger. Such an approach is the center of our startup – Gästfrihed – whose aim is to facilitate the meeting between Eastern and Central European migrants and their host country in Scandinavia. The recent decades has seen a rapid rise in the numbers of migrant workers from these areas, which has increased in 2022 with approx. 120.000 newcoming displaced Ukrainians.

In Kant’s view, the migrant and their host need to turn the hospitality into a new societal pact that sets the rule for their mutual relations, if the guest wants to settle down. This process of ‘settling’ down is a crucial one, but as research has shown is often delayed and postponed for migrants from Eastern and Central Europe. This process is also very different from what ordinary integration projects has so far entailed. The Eastern and Central European migrant group belongs to a different cultural group, have other cultural norms in their everyday and work-life and is mostly a rural phenomenon.

Our start-up offers a process and facilitation for public and private enterprises, which is tailored to the needs of this migrant group. The process helps all partner to work towards a renewed ‘coherence’ of the local community (sammen-hængs-kræft). The model is based on our research and identification of the basic factors needed to make the migrant group settling down and contribute to their local community.


Archival exhibition - A model för participatory history

Karl Vesterberg, Doctoral student at Department of History

According to Agenda 2030 sustainable development and equality should be advanced through a diversification of perspectives and the possibility for public participation. Drawing on the concept archival exhibition the purpose of this LU innovation project is to develop a model for exhibition production that opens up for different interpretations, public participation, and creative engagement within the cultural heritage industry. The model will function as an accessible method or tool for exhibition producers that want to engage with the possibilities and challenges of sustainable exhibition production.

During 2022/2023 the project focuses on producing an initial prototype of the model. In relation to this aim the temporary archival exhibition Gothenburg 1713: a visual microhistory was produced in collaboration with the National Archives of Sweden in Gothenburg, with the purpose to inspire archival engagement. Within the prototype the exhibition functions as an example of an archival exhibition in relation to previous research, to model the possibilities and challenges of sustainable exhibition production within the cultural heritage industry.


Swedish Retrospective National Bibliography (SRNB), 1483–1699

Kajsa Weber

The project Swedish Retrospective National Bibliography (SRNB), 1483–1699 aim at developing methods for the digitization of Swedish print. Since 2020 an association of libraries in Sweden are working to digitize the complete Swedish print from the 15th century until today. Digitizing Swedish prints leads to the construction of a corpus of text representing the printed Swedish heritage. Thus, digitization – like previous attempts to re-mediate historical materials – carries as much potential as risk, as it will governing access to sources for future research. Therefore, it is central that the selection of sources and the construction of the corpus represent, as much as possible, the historical publication, not just the libraries' collections. International experiences indicate that digitization projects starting from a retrospective national bibliography that reflects societal development, public debate and culture better reflect past publishing. Only the historical perspective can guarantee a good representation of Swedish print from the 15th century until today. The overall aim of the project is to ensure the representativeness of the corpus construction which will be the basis for digitalization.


Funded innovation projects in 2021

A tool for video language analysis

Henriette Arndt, Postdoc LU Humanities Lab

This project focuses on the development of an app for the linguistic analysis of online videos. The tool is intended to support second language learners in finding informal video resources, which are both interesting and linguistically accessible to them. Research indicates that many successful learners of English as a foreign language frequently engage with English-language TV series and films, online videos, and other web content in their leisure time.

Less proficient learners, on the other hand, are often prevented from making similar use of informal resources for language learning because they have difficulty identifying content that is both at an appropriate linguistic level and aligns with their personal interests. The proposed app will enable these learners to be more independent by helping them evaluate the linguistic difficulty of videos that interest them.



Petra Bernardini, Associate professor at Italian Studies and researcher at LAMiNATE (Language Acquisition, Multilingualism, and Teaching)

Children who grow up in a second language environment might lack input and peer interaction in their first language, the heritage language, a part of their identity, which they have their right to develop, according to the convention on the rights of the child, and Agenda 2030. MITA will be a combination of a chat-talk-language-training-platform with a gaming setting for bilingual children for socializing in their heritage language. The concept builds on the idea of sharing material in a community and will constitute a digital bridge between heritage language teaching in school and spare time input. The online mode makes it possible to gather more children than IRL and hence improves the possibilities of input and interaction in the heritage language.


Dome Project

Ryszard Bobrowicz, Doctoral student at Church and Mission Studies

To respond to the new challenges in the emerging multi-faith societies, the Dome Project aims to create novel solutions for sharing space in both public and private institutions. We create products that help adapt the existing spaces of shared religious/contemplative practice and we support institutions such as hospitals, airports, universities, or private companies in creating novel ones. From concrete products, such as movable prayer domes, through interactive digital hubs, to complete interior design, we take a holistic approach to our clients' needs.


Repurposing Research Data and Expanding Impact

Nicolo Dell'Unto, Associate professor and Senior lecturer Archaeology

This project aims at reusing research data for constructing 3D web visualisation systems capable of supporting the work of different users operating in the heritage sector. By creating a prototype based on the (re)use of 3D high-resolution models of the Lund Cathedral, this project defines tools customised to support heritage practitioners operating in the tourism sectors. Furthermore, the prototype will give online access to a 3D detailed visualisation of several parts of the Lund Cathedral, providing the users (e.g. tourist guides or visitors) with the opportunity to access areas of the church no longer visible.


The Cambridge Investor

Markus Hansen, Doctoral student at National Graduate School of History

The Cambridge Investor is a qualitative financial newsletter and consultancy that is rooted in the humanities and social sciences – history, economic sociology, international relations and, of course, economics. Our calling card is the provision of a deep and broad context for economic developments, market trends, and the future of individual companies. We specialize in approachable content on (the often overlooked) Russian and Eastern European markets, tech, and long-term macroeconomic developments. Our staff of writers and editors hold positions as economists and historians at major Swedish and Russian research institutions, as well as within the US insurance sector.  



William Jones, Doctoral student at Division of Ethnology

Hekima is a different kind of research. As a social innovation, Hekima maximises the societal benefits of research through tailored communications and decolonising research. With a view to bridging the gap between academia, policy, and local communities we use storytelling, engaging content and familiar digital channels to communicate bottom-up solutions that enable evidence-based decision-making.

Hekima’s pilot project - Seeds of Change - builds on ethnographic research into International Development’s impact on pastoralist livelihoods and cultures in Kenya. Their stories are brought to life through high-quality film and projected into the corridors of power to inform change. Using accessible mobile technology we train marginalised people as researchers and content creators and incorporate their own content into the films. Being locally-driven, this ensures their narrative is front and center, as they get to ask, answer and frame how the conversation is managed. A constant feedback loop between the on-the-ground researchers and the experienced Hekima team means that data can be gathered, analysed and presented much quicker than traditional methods.


Contact Innovation Developer sophie [dot] hyden_picasso [at] innovation [dot] lu [dot] se (Sophie Hydén Picasso), coordinator and contact person for this call for funding.

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