Oslo Living Lab

In the future, all jobs should be green, but many of these future green careers simply don’t exist yet. One of Nabolagshager’s focus areas is to develop green jobs, mainly related to greener cities, circular innovation and urban food production.

Oslo Living Lab employees collect food waste from a local grocery store

We believe creating these new jobs is also an opportunity to include demographic groups that often end up outside the ordinary labor market. In the summer of 2018 we therefore established Oslo Living Lab. This project supported by the Bergesen Foundation and the Urban Renewal Program of Grønland/Tøyen, provides young people from the nearby Hersleb High School with work experience and inspiration for green career choices, through exploring urban greening projects.

During the summer season, the young people work on Tak for Maten, Nabolagshager’s rooftop garden, along with other urban agriculture projects around Oslo. The winter months are focused on circular innovation with ‘waste’ products found in Grønland. The program as a whole is focused on participatory design, allowing youth to drive the innovation while working with professional mentors for validation. The winter of 2018-2019, in collaboration with the Oslo Museum / Interkulturelt Museum, focused on the production of a compost product using ‘waste’ from a single city block. The youth explored entrepreneurship through all stages of the business process from planning, branding, social media, production, marketing, and sales.

compost and packaging produced using ‘waste’ from a single city-block in Grønland

Our experience with the project is so far positive. Allowing young people to work in small teams with close follow-up of mentors is a method that ensures that participants receive good feedback, have tasks adapted to their skill levels and allows for adaptation throughout the project. You can read about our key takeaways in our published piece in RUAF magazine.

We are currently seeking more economic partners to expand the number of participants, paid hours of work and results generated.

For further information, please contact the project coordinator Idil Akdos at idil @ nabolagshager.no. You can also follow our work on Instagram.