Creativity as a Resource – workshop at PWN – Copenhagen

This past Tuesday, I had the pleasure together with Jennifer Bruder from Brain Dialogues to host our Creativity as a Resource Workshop for the Professional Women’s Network, Copenhagen chapter.

It was a very lively and cozy forum with 12 professional women from all over the world, who eagerly tapped into their creative side that evening. In just 3 hours we explored a wide range of issues, such as how to become more efficient, less stressed, and more creative with our daily tasks.


We have experienced how framing and limiting time can be a tool to boost creativity – it helps to cut out our inner censor and place all of our focus on the process of creation itself.

We stressed that creativity is a skill that can be trained, much in the same way you train your muscles. Thus, it follows, you do need to make time to be creative. The good news is, by giving ourselves 10 minutes a day, we can greatly build on our creative skills and our creative brain. There is no need to look for special days, nor a special atmosphere in order to get into the creative mode. Establishing a daily 10-minute routine will make an enormous difference to your energy, mood and to the quality and novelty of your ideas.

We have also traveled through time during the workshop – tapping into our past experiences and positive emotions, through relaxation and meditation, drawing the inspiration from these experiences and creating something new in the present moment. And we have imagined a few alternatives, some very short sketches of the future possible self. We know that techniques designed to tap into your memories, your emotions and your real and imagined experiences enhance the creative process. Mindfulness is an excellent tool to get this going.

We had a wonderful time and we were so thrilled to feel the inspiration and energy flowing in the air throughout the evening!

If you’re curious to experience your own creative energy, build the creative muscle, and gain motivation for establishing your own creative routine firsthand, we are offering a longer, more in depth course beginning on November 13th. We will meet once a week for four weeks and we would love to have you join us.

Looking forward to exploring creativity together with you!

Anna & Jennifer

About the Hosts:
*Jennifer has a PhD in Neuro-cognitive psychology and owner of the Brain Dialogues, where she translates how brain science can be applied to education, personal development and the workplace.
*Anna has a PhD in psychology and is owner of Creative Time Studio and altogether a very creative person!


Want to pursue your dream job – Denmark is a place to be

Half the workforce in the western world is dissatisfied with their careers, but around a quarter of them are too afraid to make any change, trapped by their fears and lack of self-confidence – says Roman Krznaric in his book “How to find fulfilling work”.

I looked up the research he was citing and found out some curious facts about Denmark in regards job satisfaction (in 2007 though.. I wonder how is the current situation?):

When it comes to realising your workplace aspirations and making the most of your potential, it pays to be Danish. The Danes stood out in the research as overwhelmingly contented with their lot. Most respondents clearly felt they have found their niche:

  • Nearly 90% feel their current career matches their aspirations.
  • Two in three Danes believe their previous roles have suited them too – more than any other country.
  • Nearly three in four believe they are making the most of their strengths in their current role.

The Danes express satisfaction in spite of the fact that just a small number have pursued their dream career – less than one in ten. Nearly half would take a different path a second time around.

Clearly, more effective development of their employees by Danish organisations has some bearing on their levels of job satisfaction:

  • Nearly three quarters of Danes believe their employers know their strengths.
  • The Danes were most likely to confirm that employers are helping them realise their potential.

Indvielsen – Invitation to the exhibition opening – June 3 – Copenhagen

It is my great pleasure to invite you to the opening of the exhibition of our project –

Indvielsen | Initiation: The Danish Tribe

June 3, 2016
17:00 – 19:00, Artist talk at 17.30
Politiken Boghal – Rådhuspladsen 37 , 1785 København K


This is a multi-disciplinary art project that me and Laureline Demonet have been working on lately. It is a project where we combine social studies, fashion, textile craft and photography.

Laureline explores the views of newcomers to Denmark on the Danish fashion and “Danishness” in general. She then creates a mask of what she has discovered through the interviews and later on I take photographs of the interviewees wearing their “Danish” mask.

This work is an opportunity for the Danes to look at themselves from a very unusual angle. We wish thereby to shake up the stereotypes about national identities and invite you to join the tribe!

The first part of our project will be exhibited as an installation on the Metro’s construction’s wall -City Hall Square. This is definitely the largest installation that I have ever been part of – we take over the whole wall, which is 4 meters high and 50 meters long, from top to bottom! The oversized portraits, accompanied by a narrative, will be there from the 3rd of June 2016 until end of December 2016.

More about the project:

I’m really looking forward to seeing you on June 3rd for the opening of this bizarre project!

Debate on melting science with businesses

Some random ideas and thoughts I got from participating in a debate hosted at the Suitable for Business 2013 conference (Copenhagen, Denmark). The debate was between Kim Brinckmann (from the Ministry of Science, Innovation and Higher Education), Hanne Leth Andersen (Pro-rector of Roskilde University), Morten Kold (creative director at the agency 2+1) and Rasmus Brygger (National president of a Danish youth party) and moderated by Thomas Buch-Andersen (Danmark Radio).

Kim Brinckmann (from the Ministry of Science, Innovation and Higher Education), Hanne Leth Andersen (Pro-rector of Roskilde University) at the Suitable for Business 2013

Kim Brinckmann (from the Ministry of Science, Innovation and Higher Education), Hanne Leth Andersen (Pro-rector of Roskilde University) at the Suitable for Business 2013

The discussion was sparkled by the report presented by Kim Brinckmann. Here you can find all the documentation about the innovations strategy that Denmark is planing to implement. As I understood, the problem is that although Denmark is ranked as an “innovation leader” (according to the latest EU Commission’s report “Innovation Union Scoreboard 2013“), it does not translate it enough into growth in terms of GDP.

The innovation strategy will ensure that more of Denmark’s knowledge and business positions of strength are translated to new jobs and growth. It will support a more goal-oriented Danish approach to creating innovative solutions to global societal challenges. The innovation strategy contains 27 policy initiatives regarding research, innovation and education. It focuses on a better knowledge exchange between companies and knowledge institutions, across borders and between the public and private sector.
Some of the points of the proposed strategy are very interesting, like giving some business oriented education to the students and PhD candidates. I agree to that. However, I’m not so sure that limiting the research by very specific projects and partnerships will foster creativity and innovation. Mr. Brinckmann has mentioned one of such partnership would be in the field of pig production. How many innovative methods of pig farming can you create? Reminds me of the old creativity boost task – what can you do with a brick?

But at the end of the day it will be only a solution to one particular problem. Researchers will produce innovation in one very narrow area, but they will stop producing general knowledge about how things are around us. We’ll need to learn to package our ideas about a general mechanism that can be applied to a variety of situations into a box addressed for specific needs. But then how the innovativeness in that particular area will be transferred to other domains? Or it’s not the aim?

I understand that research results should reach the society, the intended user, in one way or another, but from the other hand, all of the research shouldn’t be completely market driven. If we think back to the biggest discoveries – there wasn’t a need for them from the society. In some instances the society was even against. It took years until they got accepted and applied, like observations of Copernicus or the use of soap in hospitals.

The government wants us to innovate, but when we do the scientific society doesn’t really support this process. Both the industries and the research institutions talk about cross-disciplinary research and applications. However, when it comes to reporting the results – it’s a very difficult task. There is no platform for that.

There will be something happening in the scientific bubble soon, I think. The demand for publications is so high these days, that one single study is being chopped into parts, into smaller pieces in order to produce more papers, in hope of more citations, the struggle to get into a journal with a high impact factor, etc…. In the end we loose track and the big picture…

I agree with another speaker at the conference – Anne Skare Nielsen (Future Navigator) when she says that right now we experience abundance of solutions and we do not need more, but we should use what is here already. Productivity should be about creating more value, producing meaning and meaningful stuff and gross national happiness.

We do not need more soap. We need more people that can teach others how to use it.
Why exactly do we need more innovation? For statistics? Why not instead of aiming at creating more innovations, aim at creating opportunities for make a better use of what is already there?

Sometimes less is more!

Suitable for Business 2013 conference, Copenhagen, Denmark

Suitable for Business 2013 conference, Copenhagen, Denmark

Anne Skare Nielsen (Future Navigator) at Suitable for Business 2013 conference, Copenhagen, Denmark