Every year, the Nordic region comes together the 23rd of March to celebrate the Nordic Day. Despite the pandemic this year was no different and 2021 there was even more reason to celebrate as the Nordic Council of Ministers is celebrating its 50th anniversary. Huge congratulations for a job well done, year after year, with guiding us towards becoming the most sustainable and integrated region of the world.
This year, Norders, had the opportunity to host the Nordic Day 2021 event in English. Normally, the events are hosted in Nordic and Scandinavian languages, which locally contributes strongly to our shared goals. This time, partially because of the pandemic, we saw value in sharing the key message as well globally, as we Norders have been limited to travel around the world and share our learnings and strengths. The results talked for themselves, a demand that resulted in more than 2000 global participants and a reach of more than 200 000 people across all our beautiful continents.
So what is the Nordic Day about?
Nordic Day is an offcial celebration day of the Nordics, created by the Nordic Council of Ministers. It is traditionally a flag day and marks the day when the Helsinki Agreement was signed on 23 March 1962. It defines the duties and composition of the Nordic Council and Nordic Council of Ministers and, in general, the main areas and methods of Nordic cooperation (Norden.org, 2020). The Nordic region consists of Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Iceland, Faraoe Islands, Greenland and Åland. We are bound through history and the easy way to know which countries belong is by seeing our resemblance in vexillology – the study of the history, symbolism, and usage of flags.
Traditionally, the Nordic Day is hosted live in the different Nordic locations and hubs that exist in the various Nordic capitals. This year we were forced to think differently and as a forward thinking, open and innovative region we find new ways to unite people. This year the program was hosted online, which allowed us to think bigger and reach a wider audience sharing the best practices and ideologies from the happiest continent in the world, The Nordics.
Nordic Day 2021 delivered by Norders, for Norders
Today’s virus-driven world is unpredictable, divided, and dynamic. Norders need to come and work together to make sure The Nordics and the world bounces back to the way it was. It is important to come together and start from the same line with new and creative approaches to deal with the future challenges the society, culture, and businesses face. Share know-how. Work together. As the unified brand project The Nordics states, Let's show the Nordics in the world! (The Nordics, 2020)
With this vision we set sail to make a great event happen in collaboration with Nordic individuals, organizations and with speakers, who are already leading the change throughout the Nordic region.
This year we aimed to create an online event to come together in the midst of the pandemic about the Nordic Region and beyond focusing on the key points of Agenda 2021-2024 combined with culture and business. Topics included culture, innovation and sustainability. Nordic co-operation has always been also about scaling beyond our borders and in this event, we aimed to highlight the Nordics as a superconnected hub for both individual and organizational growth globally. And in my opinion, we managed to help the world understand why the Nordic region could function as the lighthouse for the world’s biggest problems (Kristina Hafoss, 2021).
The overarching goal and mission?
Nordic Day 2021 will continue as a hybrid event where we aim to bridge Nordic doers, share information about the Nordics, highlight plans within Nordic co-operation, and increase global knowledge about the Nordics and it's strengths. The main goal is to bring Nordic doers together and align the knowledge and goals. It was not just a one-time event, but a start of a snowball effect that together with the grassroots becomes a Nordic wave of change (see our podcast to learn more about the Nordic Wave of Change: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLrflD773TgTQqw8KtHO7G-QIohhm2sixs)
Our mission since the start was to go beyond organizing a single event - our aim is to create a movement and network allowing young people to learn and integrate to the shared Nordic values and goals. We have been able to gain growing support from the bright minds behind the basis of all such as the Nordic Council of Ministers, thenordics.com, and more than 20 Nordic corporate partners.
‘A good start’ – Peter Vesterbacka
Now one month later watching back what was done, one can not do anything else than simply smile. The Nordic Day 2021 was created in less than 2 months with no budget and still resulted in valuable results, both in terms of connecting people, but also in creating a new wave of motion and interest. The whole event was an epiphany of young people coming together, with the support of the older generations and an amazing talkoot (see Finnish talkoot https://suomenkielen.wordpress.com/2015/10/25/talkoot/) spirit from both organizations and speakers. Something we can all be extremely proud of, learning by doing and doing together.
During the 9-to-5 event we had the opportunity to hear various keynote speakers, fireside chats and panel discussions about various topics around the Nordics. All the sessions were live streamed through various channels and reached a total of more than 2000 active listeners. In addition to the immediate effect, the event reached more than 200 000 people and the sessions keep on gaining traction. All of the recordings can be found on YouTube (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QfjVgeWf1hk&list=PLrflD773TgTSmSyApTBQRXe_PlN4Lrii0)
In addition to the reach, many next steps grew out of the event such as the planning of the Nordic Day 2022 with the goal to inspire, elevate and unite the Nordic doing to a state stronger than ever. In addition to this, a large international interest raised demanding Nordic specific events to be done between continents such as Nordics - USA and Nordics - Asia. Nothing of this would have been possible without the Talkoot spirit and the belief in our doing. So the big thank you goes to all of you Norders out there.
What would an event be without the next steps? To deliver an impact we have built some next steps to help us all deliver the best Nordic practices, throughout the year, in all of our work. The first deliverable is events, we have the process, the tools, and the knowledge and now we want to help you scale as well. Start your Nordic growth journey today and try our new concept https://www.thenorders.co/gonordic
In addition to this, we also aim to build the leading Nordic Creative Community. With more than 500 people signed up to our waitlist, the Norders vision is clear: We aim to elevate, unite and inspire the world about the Nordic model and its best practices, learning from the North Stars teaching the rising ones. The goal is to make this available for everyone supporting both individuals and organizations to grow their impact sustainably.
The Nordic best practices have been recognized globally by many and are validated to work. Learning and adapting it to our daily lives does not happen by itself and thus we have made it our mission to bring the key players together to allow us all to join this important journey towards a more connected and prosperous world. Together.
We are headed towards many great things and to stay up to date I urge you to join the wave of change. You can easily join by signing up to the community waitlist at https://www.thenorders.co/about-norders