History

In 1975 the Student Housing Foundation in Vasa invited colleagues from the other Nordic countries to at technical-administrative conference. It was a success in many ways, and showed that there was a need for Nordic neighbours to meet to share knowledge and experiences. The aim was, and still is, to gather administrative representatives, or people working with these issues. The conferences have also invited guests – government representative, non-Nordic participants, and others.

Oslo took the torch the following year, 1976. It was a strategic decision. Now two conferences had been arranged – and then it continued (see the list below).

The topics have varied somewhat; they have reflected developments, problems have changed, houses have grown older and needed renovating, data technology has arrived, demand for housing has alternated (sometimes a surplus, other times a shortage). The topics have always revolved around tangible and important technical and administrative issues; issues that student housing administrations confront on a day-to-day basis. Recurring features have been new construction and reconstruction, energy-saving measures, information and data processing, and developmental issues.

In the beginning the conferences were held every year, but since 1984 they have been organised every second year. In between the larger conferences, “mini-conferences” with fewer participants have been held to take up special issues.

An important feature in the Nordic Student Housing Conferences has always been to show the host country, and offer an insight into its culture and history.

The social aspect, in all of its different forms, is very important. The participants are able to personally exchange experiences, particularly regarding the topics being discussed, but also around planning and administration of student housing in general.

They also make contacts, get to know colleagues from different places and learn about conditions in different countries and companies.

Consequently, this direct contact has later led to useful information and advice in numerous areas, for example, specific problems in one’s own operation. Sometimes the situation has called for contacts to be extended by visiting a colleague in another company. All of this has led to inspiration, suggestions for change, or even the confirmation that everything works fine just the way it is – a concrete and practical Nordism at its best.

In the beginning the co-operation was relatively unorganised, but as time passed, it became evident that more organised forms were needed. A workgroup with representatives from each of the different countries was created as early as 1977. The workgroup met between conferences – discussed the topics, planned and distributed the tasks involved in preparing sections, producing material, etc. The conferences became increasingly well-planned and well-prepared.

Gradually, a framework developed for the events, a “Professional Association for Student Housing Administrators” (NSBK) – a strictly voluntary organisation, originally without membership fees and aimed at organising Nordic Student Housing Conferences and promoting Nordic co-operation.

Slowly, the need for even more formal arrangements evolved and the organisation now has the name “The Nordic Student Housing Organisation”, with regulations, a board, a secretary and membership fees.

 

Study visits:

2015 Norway Trondheim

Conferences:

1975
Finland
Vasa
1976
Norway
Oslo
1977
Sweden
Uppsala
1978
Denmark
Copenhagen
1979
Iceland
Reykjavik
1980
Finland
Uleåborg
1981
Sweden
Göteborg
1982
Norway
Tromsø
1984
Denmark
Hanstholm
1986
Iceland
Reykjavik
1988
Finland
Floating conference
1990
Sweden
Lund
1992
Norway
Lillehammer and Trondheim
1994
Denmark
Ellsinore
1996
Iceland
Reykjavik
1998
Finland
Tammerfors
2000
Sweden
Stockholm
2002
Norway
Bergen
2004
Denmark
Århus
2006
Iceland
Reykjavik
2008
Finland/Estonia
Tallinn
2010
Sweden
Linköping
2012
Norway
Lillehammer
2018
Iceland
Reykjavík

Miniconferences:

1983
Denmark
Odense
1983
Finland
Åbo
1985
Norway
Oslo
1987
Finland
Helsingfors
1988
Denmark
Sønderborg
1990
Iceland
Reykjavik
1991
Germany
Berlin
1993
Northern Ireland
1994
Finland
Vasa
1995
England
Leeds
1997
Germany
Berlin
1999
Scotland
Edinburgh
2001
Ireland
Dublin
2003
Netherland
Leiden
2009
England
London