Country in the Spotlight: Sweden
Publication date: 18/10/2018

Creative, diverse and sustainable

Sweden is known for its large forests, cold winters, northern lights and IKEA. But there is more: Sweden is sustainable, innovative and home to the Nobel Prize. Best of all: everyone speaks English! With its renowned higher education institutions, Sweden is a great place to study as an international student.

Sweden - Stockholm
Credits: Bjorn Olin Folio -

Creativity is central

When you study in Sweden, you’re encouraged to think independently, creatively and critically. You’ll develop your ability to question the status quo by accessing information, seeking new perspectives and coming up with well-informed opinions. You’ll be free to think creatively because of the informal and non-hierarchical nature of Swedish society, where everyone is encouraged to contribute ideas and opinions. Sweden’s status as a leader in innovation and a home of trendsetters and early adopters is nothing new: the list of Swedish world-changing inventions is a long one and includes the seatbelt, the pacemaker and the music service Spotify. Which one of your brilliant ideas will become reality by studying in Sweden?

Coursework is challenging – in a good way

Sweden has a long and proud history of academic excellence and despite its relatively small population, Sweden is home to some of the influential universities. The entire Swedish higher education system is ranked as one of the best in the world. Several Swedish universities are ranked by the Times Higher Education and the Academic Ranking of World Universities as being among the world’s best. In Sweden you’ll find a strong focus on rationality, reason and applying knowledge in such a way that it makes a real difference.

As a student here, you’ll become part of this tradition of academic excellence. Just don’t expect to passively receive information: you’ll be encouraged and challenged to contribute, speak your mind and take your education into your own hands. Swedish universities are well-adapted to the needs of international students, and Sweden consistently ranks in the top three countries in the world for English proficiency. You’ll be able to use English with everyone you meet, from the classroom to the city centre.

Diversity in Sweden
Credits:Simon Paulin -

Sustainability and the environment are in focus

If you’re focused on sustainable development for a greener future, you’ll feel right at home in Sweden. Environmental thinking and sustainability are a part of all aspects of life here, including education. Studying here will give you the chance to draw on Sweden’s deep environmental experience and apply its sustainable approach to your own chosen field.

And it’s not hard to see why Swedes are so keen to protect the environment: nature here is breathtaking, with huge forests, beautiful beaches and snow-capped mountains. Sweden’s 29 national parks and nearly 4,000 nature reserves offer you the opportunity to ski, hike, fish, swim and mountain bike.

Swedish culture
Credits: Per Bifrost -

Equality and diversity are central to Swedish society

Swedish society is known for its inclusiveness and equality – you may have heard Sweden referred to as the most equal country in the world. It consistently places among the world’s top countries in gender equality, and lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) rights in Sweden are regarded as among the most progressive in the world. The belief that everyone is of equal value contributes to Sweden’s consensus approach to getting things done, where everyone takes part in the decision-making process. During your studies, you’ll learn how to balance different interests, needs and ideas, to bring out the best in everyone and to solve complex issues as a team. Vital skills for a global career, where teamwork across cultures is the norm.

You’ll learn skills for a global career

What’s the most important thing you’ll need for success in your career? According to a global study of CEOs, it’s creativity. And creativity is exactly what studying in Sweden will foster, together with other in-demand skills such as how to combine theory and practice, and how to navigate complex situations where there’s no easy solution. Many degree programmes in Sweden include internships, which are a great way to get real-world experience while you build your professional network.

The fact that Sweden is home to the largest number of multinationals per capita of any country in the world and is the birthplace of many world-conquering companies, like IKEA, TetraPak, Volvo, Ericsson, AstraZeneca and H&M, means that getting on the career ladder here can really take you to places. Should you receive a job offer while you’re still studying here, you can apply for a work permit and enjoy the work-life balance that Sweden is famous for.

Ready to get started? Find out more about studying in Sweden on Sweden’s country profile and

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