Conference Speakers: Sweden

Erik Stenberg
Erik Stenberg is an architect and associate professor in the School of Architecture and the Built Environment at the Royal Institute of Technology (KTH) in Stockholm. He has been teaching studio and courses in architecture since 1997. He is currently active in developing the Sustainable Homes Lab at KTH Center for a Sustainable Built Environment. Since 1999 he has also been engaged in the practice, research and politics of restructuring the large-scale postwar modernist housing areas of the Million Program Era in Sweden. He has redesigned apartments, organized a housing fair, researched and exhibited archival material from his growing collection, started an introductory architecture school in one of Stockholm's largest modernist housing areas, and lectured extensively nationally and internationally. As head of the architecture department at KTH from 2006 to 2013, he was instrumental in guiding the school through a significant shift towards fiscal stability, and into the Architectural Academy, a network of Swedish architecture schools established in 2009. He is also the principal and owner of his own practice, which focuses the tectonics of small additions and renovations. He received his BArch in 1995 from the College of Architecture and Urban Studies at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, Virginia.

Sara Grahn
Sara Grahn, SAR/MSA, is a professor in Sustainable Design at the School of Architecture, Royal Institute of Technology (KTH) in Stockholm, and a senior partner at White Arkitekter, a 700-member strong firm with offices in Sweden, Denmark, Norway, and the UK, now one of the largest architecture practices in Europe. Grahn has worked on a range of award-winning projects at all scales, including commercial, public, and educational buildings, as well as urban design. Her work is characterized by a sustainable approach where environmental, economic, and social aspects are an integral part of architectural design. Grahn was part of the project team behind Kv. Katsan, White’s prize-winning, Green Building Gold–certified head office in Stockholm. She was the lead architect for White’s proposal for Oslo’s new government quarter, and has been working with the urban development of the campus area in Lund. She was part of the team that won the international competitions for FAR ROC [For a Resilient Rockaway] in New York, and a 20-year masterplan for Kiruna, a city in northern Sweden that will be moved two miles east. She is the lead architect for two BREEAM certified office buildings in Solna, outside Stockholm. White Arkitekter was founded in Gothenberg, Sweden, in 1951, espousing collaboration and creating a shared-ownership structure that allows any employee to buy shares in the company. The practice delivers cutting-edge expertise as a result from combining academic and practice-based architecture research.

Alexis Pontvik
Alexis Pontvik, MSA/SAR, AIS, RIBA, is an award-winning architect and principal of his own firm, Pontvik Arkitekter AB, in Stockholm. He received his architectural education at the HBZ in Bern, Switzerland, Staatliche Kunstakademie Düsseldorf, and the Architectural Association in London. He has designed residential projects for private and public clients, in Sweden, Germany, Norway, the UK, and the United States. Early in his career, he was a collaborator of James Stirling’s. His recently built projects include a theater in Haugesund, Norway, several institutional buildings in Bagamoyo, Tanzania, and an art gallery in Uddevalla, Sweden. Pontvik has also designed several major national and international exhibitions on a variety of subjects. His work also encompasses urban planning. He has served as a consultant to the Stockholm Town Planning Authority and the Swedish Civil Airport Authority. He has also advised the Swedish International Cooperation Development Agency (SIDA), working on masterplans in the Middle East and East Africa. Pontvik is presently a professor of urban design at the Royal Institute of Technology (KTH) in Stockholm. He has served as a jury member for numerous architecture and art competitions and is active in the ongoing debate on architectural and urban issues in Stockholm. He is currently developing a UN Habitat Hub with focus on Urban Form and International Cooperation.

Karolina Keyzer
Karolina Keyzer, SAR/MSA, has been the City Architect of Stockholm since 2010—the 18th in a succession that began in 1661, and the first woman to hold the post. She is responsible for the new architecture guidelines for Stockholm. She worked previously in a private practice at Wingårdh Architects, where she was responsible for the Victoria Tower, one of the tallest buildings in Stockholm and winner of the hotel category at the World Architecture Festival (WAF) in 2012; and the Friends Arena Hotel in Solna, which received the city’s 2013 Urban Environment Award. Keyzer is a board member of Färgfabriken, a contemporary exhibition space in Stockholm devoted to art, architecture, and urban planning, and of the Birthe and Per Arvidssons Foundation, a nonprofit that supports the arts, architecture, and the humanities. She is also a member of the strategic council of the School of Architecture at the Royal Institute of Technology (KTH) in Stockholm. She is a frequent participant in national and international architect juries, such as the Nobel Center competition in Stockholm, which resulted in the selection of David Chipperfield and Christoph Felger’s proposal in 2014, and the competition for a new government office build in Oslo.