We proudly present our campaign launch of Digging deep, which is a glimpse into some of the many things that the program has contributed to, helped create or enabled during the 10 years the program has existed.
Our vision is a world-leading mining and mineral producing industry that contributes to a sustainable society. As one of Sweden’s strategic innovation programs our efforts have been towards innovation capacity, technology development, social acceptance and qualified personnel. In the coming months, we will share examples in our different channels, large and small, narrow and broad, where Swedish Mining Innovation and our partners have contribued the vision. Short and sweet, easy to understand, gathered under one of these three headings:
And first up is…
Digging deep: Innovation drivers
Bergslagen is a strong innovation area in the mining and mineral industry with strong active players including mining, mine services and equipment suppliers, plus academia and research. Therefore, the program started up a node for that area, Swedish Mining Innovation Bergslagen.
By connecting the actors in Bergslagen with our established and broad national network, we strengthen the area’s opportunities. Since the start in 2021, the node has carried out several appreciated events, workshops and collaborations. To mention some: Mining lunch, AI in Mining, Mining@ORU, Student tour Mining Safari Bergslagen and other.
Digging deep: Future technology
Swedish Mining Innovation has granted SEK 6 million to international project applications. This has resulted in SEK 300 million in granted European funding that has benefited the Swedish mining sector in one way or another. One of these projects is Nexgen SIMS (Sustainable Intelligent Mining Systems), where Swedish Mining Innovation granted funding to write the Horizon 2020 application in 2021.
Through Horizon 2020, the European Union has granted a mining project where pilots in 8 producing mines tests sustainable technology at the absolute forefront. Nexgen SIMS is a three-year project with total funding of EUR 13 million (or about SEK 130 M) working towards the vision; carbon neutral efficient, safe, and sustainable mining as an enabler for a global green transition.
This is one example of a project that enables system innovation and benefits both Swedish and international mining industry.
Digging deep: Societal sustainability
A valuable network for smaller municipalities
The establishment of a mine involves a major change in society as a whole, not least when it comes to the role of municipalities. The project “National Network for Mining Municipalities” aimed to create a dialogue and cooperation between municipalities in similar situations.
The project that has now been completed was an extension of a previous project that was also funded by Swedish Mining Innovation, the “Mining Society Project”. Around 17 municipalities from all over the country have participated in the project and they either are a mining municipality or in the process of becoming one.
-The main purpose of this project has been to create a network for municipalities that are in some phase of a mining establishment. Within the network, you can gain new experiences and competences that are difficult for a smaller municipality to acquire in other ways, says Anna Kumpula, Georange.
During the project period, several network meetings have been organized, digitally but above all in connection with various site visits. Common challenges have been discussed and the participants have found peers to exchange ideas with who are in similar positions as themselves but in another municipality. One of the most important results of the project is the realization of the need for a competence center. In many cases, it is the small municipalities that becomes the hosts for mining establishments, and they sometimes lack the skills needed. By starting and setting up a competence center, they can gain access to skills and competencies that a small municipality cannot offer on its own.
What has been most successful about the project, in your opinion?
– It’s the feedback from all the participants, that they think a project like this is of great value. It is not entirely clear what role the municipality has in the establishment of a mine, so being able to discuss these issues with others in the same situation has been very valuable for them. There is also a lot of ignorance and prejudice about the mining industry, which can lead to fear, and we have also managed to overcome this in several cases through collaboration.
What happens now?
– In interviews with all participating municipalities, it is clear that there is a great need to continue and develop the network of mining municipalities. The project has identified what the municipalities need. Now it is time to decide how this will be delivered, who will own the question and keep running this work. It is important not to let this need go to waste after the end of the project, concludes Anna Kumpula, Georange.
A separate newsletter is published at the beginning of each month with new cases each time. Our regular newsletter will be published in the middle of the month from October onwards.