Monthly Archives: April 2016

Discount on Alliance Magazine for ISTR Conference Participants

We are pleased to share the news that Alliance Magazine has agreed to offer a 20% discount on subscriptions for ISTR Conference participants.

Alliance magazine is the definitive resource for all philanthropy and social investment professionals worldwide. It provides news and analysis of what’s happening in this sector and is the only magazine of its kind with a global focus.

To claim your discount,* visit the Benefits of ISTR Membership page.

You can also download your sample issue of Alliance magazine, ‘Why philanthropy should care about the SDGs’, here.

*New subscribers only.

Time again for ISTR’s popular PhD seminar

The following is a guest post by the co-chairs of ISTR’s 3rd PhD Seminar, which will take place in the 2 days prior to the ISTR Conference.

Being a PhD student has never been easy! Learning the ropes, networking, writing and presenting papers, attending courses and much more. For us it was very much learning by doing and an important source of support in this process was all the fellow PhD students and senior scholars we have met at conferences and seminars along the way. It is because of these positive experiences from peer support groups that we are so enthusiastic about the ISTR PhD seminars.

PhD seminar 2

And, we’re not the only ones to be enthusiastic over this. Since the first seminar in Sienna, Italy, in 2012 the number of applicants has soared. We are therefore very much looking forward to this year’s event in Stockholm, which takes place two days prior to the ISTR conference at Ersta Sköndal University College.

Having served as faculty on the two previous seminars it is with great joy and pride to be involved once again, this time as organizers. This year we are warmly welcoming an exciting group of around 50 PhD students from most corners of the world. They will present and discuss their projects in a friendly environment facilitated by 12 senior scholars that are all engaged in civil society issues and committed to supporting junior scholars in their endeavors.

Previous seminars have offered workshops around various topics. This has been very popular so we will, of course, continue this appreciated tradition. We are presently planning workshops around issues such as getting published, post-doc careers abroad and work-life balance. The seminar this year will also be inspired by the renowned Professor Peter Frumkin who will not only be giving a key note speech, but also join the sessions at the seminar for a day.

However, ISTR’s PhD seminar is not only about projects, workshops and professors giving speeches. It is also a tremendous opportunity where we can create a sound foundation for future civil society research by connecting with scholars from all over the world, supporting and learning from each other, meeting old and new friends and just having a lot of fun.


Johan Hvenmark Chair, ISTR PhD Seminar and researcher, Ersta Sköndal University College


Pelle Åberg Co-chair, ISTR PhD Seminar and researcher, Ersta Sköndal University College

Welcome to Ersta Sköndal University College!

The following is a guest post by Per Nilsson, Vice-Chancellor, CEO, and Professor of Ersta Sköndal University College, co-hosts of the 12th International ISTR Conference.


Welcome to Ersta Sköndal University College and to the 12th ISTR research conference in Stockholm!


Ersta Sköndal University College is a university dedicated to studies in the fields of social work, nursing and health care, psychotherapy, theology and church music with an explicit ethical and diaconal orientation.

A distinguishing characteristic of the University College is that it offers courses in which theory is combined with practice, research with studies in the field, and that special attention is given to questions within philosophies of life and world views, professionalization and societal issues.


Research is vital for Ersta Sköndal University College.

The university college’s historical background has created an academic culture where human health, welfare and vulnerability are the focus of study. This explains how research fields such as civil society studies, palliative care and care ethics have developed and given the university college its specific profile.

In our research program, we explain that our research will be based on social development trends that influence health care, care and social work in particular. This is also clear in our application for entitlement to award postgraduate degrees within the field of “The Individual in the Welfare Society”, an application that was sanctioned by the government in 2014.

Strong diaconal heritage

Our university college has a long and a strong diaconal history. In 1851, the first nurse training course in Sweden was launched. The first socially oriented program at national level began at the turn of the last century in the form of diaconal training courses.

Education and research at Ersta Sköndal University College has over long time contributed to the development of knowledge within health care, care and social work in such a way that people’s right to live in dignity, autonomy, participation in decision-making and influence are maintained, and enforced.

The conference

Ersta Sköndal University College is keen to make a difference in society.

The ISTR conference signals, as stated in the invitation, a hands-on approach to deal with the current situation of Third Sector Research. In the conference there will be excellent opportunities to focus on the challenges for research and social practice in face of financial austerity and market driven policies. The effects of these changes in society on the strategies, practice and theory are the topics to be discussed.

An important mission is to bring together a diverse group of researchers and practitioners with an interest in the research and study of Third Sector from Europe and other world regions. By inviting academic people representing different disciplines as well as practitioners representing different organizations, the ISTR conference hopes to provide a broad context to discuss some of the most crucial challenges to the Third Sector and social work.

The bringing together of researchers and practitioners also gives an opportunity to address some essential issues concerning the interaction between research and practice.

I really look forward to the conference.

Per Nilsson

Vice-Chancellor, CEO, Professor

ISTR Conference Registration Closed

Due to record high registration numbers reaching the 725 mark, and in consultation with our local conference hosts at Ersta Skondal University, ISTR has closed registration for the 12th International Conference in Stockholm, Sweden.

We have established a waitlist for those still interested in participating.

This is the first time in our history that we have had to cap levels of conference participants, and we view this, along with the surge in new members attending the event, as evidence of the increasing relevance and importance of ISTR in bringing scholars and practitioners together from around the world.

For those of you attending, please keep an eye out for an email that will be arriving soon asking for you to RSVP to the opening and closing receptions.  Your RSVP to this email is REQUIRED if you want to participate in these events for security purposes.