In 2017, the number of U.K. citizens living in Sweden was 27 658. Their reasons for moving to Sweden can vary. Some move with their job, others have found love, and there are those who simply wanted a change.
People from the U.K. have a very positive view of Sweden. Part of this is driven by the appreciation for IKEA, Scandinavian crime fiction and ABBA. Whilst all of these things can be enjoyed from anywhere in the world, there are some things that U.K. people love about Swedish culture.
The importance of a break
In the U.K. they believe in the importance of a cup of tea. Taking a tea break is a vital part of British culture. It is not merely the drink itself, but the act of taking a moment, either for oneself or with others.
The tea cannot be rushed. Friends fix problems over tea, putting the world to rights. People comfort each other with a cup of tea. Tea is caring, and caring is important.
Swedes have their own version of this, that Brits in Sweden find very easy to get on board with. The Swedes call it fika, which refers to the event itself rather than the beverage, which in Sweden’s case tends to be coffee.
The Swedes also respect fika in the same way that Brits respect the tea break. People from the U.K. feel the familiar atmosphere and many might see fika culture as one of the highlights of life in Sweden.
Brits love the clean and beautiful landscapes, and the environmentally friendly approach to industry and innovation. In 1996, the Swedish city of Växjö set a target to become completely free from fossil-fuels by 2030.
It was the first city in the world to set such an ambitious goal, and it has served to inspire many other cities to be more environmentally friendly.
The British have long been fans of Sweden’s simple, clean and functional designs, as well as sensible and practical approaches to both interior design and problem solving as a whole. Sweden takes the necessity of sustainability and turns it into something beautiful and positive.
Sweden is a highly innovative country. In 2017 it was in 2nd place on the Global Innovation Index, behind Switzerland.
One of the reasons Sweden is performing so well in terms of innovation is the fact that Swedish culture enables people to take risks. There is support available for those starting their own company, as well as a huge amount of investment in startups.
Swedish companies overall tend to be built on a strong value set, with a focus on equality and sustainability. This appeals to everyone, not just people from the U.K, and is something that can very positively influence peoples choices to live and work in Sweden.
According to a survey by The Local, a prominent British perception of Sweden is that “Sweden is a force for good in the world, and that Swedish companies can be trusted”.
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