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GoCo Health Innovation City kickstarts program for the future of health

Construction of the new health innovation cluster outside Gothenburg is underway. As buildings take shape, so does another initiative. The companies behind GoCo Health Innovation City are already taking measures to establish the professional and innovation culture of this groundbreaking project. The first step is the opening of GoCo Arena, which is a natural centre for the whole City. But it’s also a health innovation programme with participants from all over the world.

The programme kicked off with the theme “Behavioural Changes Toward Better Health”. The goal was to share knowledge and workshop together, in order to quickly form ideas and initiate projects that can have a direct impact on human health challenges.

"In times like these we are so proud to announce that we have co-developed a programme for innovation. It is a seminal step in our mission to become a stakeholder in the future of health innovation and I am looking forward to welcome new companies to our site – a place where new ideas already start to emerge," says Peder Wahlgren, CEO of GoCo Health Innovation City.

The event attracted thinkers and professionals who listened to international keynote speakers such as Paul Chadwick, Deputy Director of University College of London – Centre for Behavioural Change, and Mats Börjesson, Professor, Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg and Chief Physician at Sahlgrenska University Hospital. To get the most out of the participant’s knowledge and creativity, the workshop and collaborating sessions were moderated by Lisa Lindström, CEO of renowned design firm Doberman Group.

The innovation programme will continue to bring international health science professionals, creatives and entrepreneurs to Gothenburg under different themes. It’s a first step to establish the innovation culture that is a key part of the entire area.

This event was also the grand opening of the physical space GoCo Arena. It’s the heart of GoCo Health Innovation City and a place designed for people to meet, be creative and exchange ideas. The design itself sets the creative tone, with reused shipping containers from the Gothenburg harbour joined together to host restaurants and innovative meeting spaces. The Arena also offers a project showroom, offices and open spaces for people to hang out, network and work collaborate.

To breathe life into the Arena, a community manager has been hired. Marie Uddenmyr’s task is to run the entire GoCo Arena, but also to shoulder responsibility for GoCo Health Innovation City’s industry community. It’s yet another early action taken to establish this project as a global centre for health innovation.

"We focus on innovation and change to tackle human health challenges. And we’re starting to create right now. And that is what GoCo stands for - to gather companies, organisations and people to get to know each other, to build trust, to make things happen and to explore different teams and aspects of health innovation. That’s what we’re going to do here," says Marie Uddenmyr, Community Manager, GoCo Health Innovation City.

As the intellectual capital of this important project gathers momentum through these initiatives, the physical city is being built around it. The entire project started out as an initiative from AstraZeneca’s site in Mölndal, outside Sweden’s second largest city of Gothenburg. Together with Next Step Group in Hovås and Vectura Fastigheter in Stockholm, the project has gone from a vision to reality in little time.

The shared vision of the project is to create a global hub for the Life Science industry, where creativity and the sharing of ideas is built into the entire area. The ambitious goal is to tackle the challenges facing human health. To get there, the site will attract companies, organisations, professionals, creatives and entrepreneurs from all over the world.

GoCo Health Innovation City will eventually offer 100,000 square meters of space and the capacity for 350 companies and 7,000 people, all joined together by operating in the Life Science industry. Already an international company has committed to the site – Fujirebio, the Japanese world-leading cancer diagnostics company. Construction of their 8,000 square meter building is under way and will stand ready for the global company in August 2021.

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