Heading for return to campus
President Sigbritt Karlsson’s vision for autumn is that everyone should feel welcome back on campus again after the holidays.
“It is important for KTH’s development and the working environment that we can all work on campus again. Meetings between people are pretty much unbeatable. Even so, we also need to conduct ourselves sensibly and make the most of the lessons we have learned during the pandemic,” says Karlsson.
With reservations as to how the infection situation will look in early autumn and Public Health Agency of Sweden recommendations, the basic idea is that everyone should be back at their respective workplace again this autumn.
“Having said that, we have learned to be more flexible and need to take onboard these experiences. There is more than one way to skin a cat.”
More hybrid meetings that can save time and perhaps reduce stress is one way.
“Remote working is something that will still be possible, work permitting, and should be acceptable, but each individual employee will need to agree this with their immediate manager,” says Karlsson.
When it comes to education at KTH, Karlsson envisages that students will be able to be offered a broader repertoire where ,for instance, large lecture hall courses and written exams are interwoven with other models to a greater extent than before the switch to online education in March 2020.
“Physical meetings between teachers and students on campus and between students themselves will always have a decidedly high worth and important for reflection, questions and further examination.”
Karlsson also stresses the importance of more people being on campus to ensure experimental research can be pursued to the fullest extent.
Many reports forecast that working life will never been the same again in the future. Being an attractive employer includes keeping up with the times.
“Naturally KTH will do this. But it will be done through systematic, transparent and properly considered development work, such as via an analysis of Education and Research Support, not in the shape of temporary solutions. But first, we need to come back to work and then take the next steps. I personally am really looking forward to seeing everyone again.”
Decision in May
The President is expected to make a formal decision about autumn at the end of May. As with earlier decisions in general, this will depend on how the situation is developing. In the case of business travel, student exchanges etc., this will very much depend on what is happening on the vaccination front and what rules apply for travel in general in Sweden and internationally, based on the pandemic situation.
The HR Department at University Administration (GVS) and the School of Industrial Engineering and Management have produced support material for managers and work groups to use at workplace meetings to ease the return and make this as smooth as possible.