During my 29 years working with communication, I have been engaged in more than 50 major communication projects in a variety of functions: team leader, advisor, journalist, producer, Webmaster, trainer and evaluator. The majority of the projects have dealt with behavioural change and development issues.
Over the last eight years I have been advising governments and NGOs in Latin America, Asia, Eastern Europe and Africa on communication issues related to behavioural change. I have travelled and worked in more than 60 countries, seven in sub-Saharan Africa, and I speak four UN-languages: English, Spanish, Portuguese and French.
My academic background is solid. I have the equivalent of a Masters Degree in Strategic Development Communication from the Institute for Public Relations at Stockholm University and a Bachelor of Journalism degree at the same university. I have also studied French and French literature at the University of Sorbonne and journalism and public communication at the School of Public Communication at Boston University, USA.
One and a half year’s studies at the Swedish Ministry for Foreign Affair’s School for Development Studies has given me a in-depth knowledge of development theories.
I have extensive experiences of designing and implementing behavioural change strategies. Below are some samples of achievements during my career:
· Designed a strategy for the Zanzibar Ministry of Energy to communicate the necessity of paying the electricity bill. The core of the strategy was a large number of meetings and workshop with key stakeholders, such as sheas, religious leaders, politicians, civil servants, hotel owners and all employees at the energy company. The activities also included national sms-messages and TV- and radio spots. While there had been violent riots at the Tanzania mainland and in South Africa when introducing a similar reform, the introduction of a tougher control on paying the bills on Zanzibar ran without any protests, as people understood the necessity of paying in order to receive service.
· Designed a behavioural change campaign in northern Iraq in order to decrease water consumption. We focused on schools in a particular area and formed a local committee of headmasters, mullahs and clan leaders. We also involved religious leaders at a national level, concerned ministers and key staff at their ministries and organised trainings and competitions for leading journalists. We trained more than 7 000 school children. The result in the confined areas was a decreased water consumption of around 50 %. The campaign was designed to be easily duplicated.
· Designed a behavioural change campaign in Tegucigalpa, Honduras, to make people in the slums deposit their garbage. We organized local committees in two areas with around 200 000 citizens. The core of the campaign was youth from maras that rapped their own texts on environment themes. Their songs were recorded and played on all TV- and radio stations, charging the campaign with positive energy, also resulting in extensive media coverage. The results were outstanding. Understanding of the relationship between garbage and diseases increased from 48 % to 99 %. The local committees continued the campaign at their own initiative for several years after the end of the official campaign. The campaign was designed to be easily duplicated.
· During the Swedish Presidency of the EU (2009) I was contracted as communication advisor to the Swedish Prime Minister’s officer in order to strengthen public pressure – primarily from Swedish target groups – to make decision makers act on improving the environment in the Baltic Sea. I designed a plan and assisted in organizing all public activities during the year in relation to the Baltic Sea, topped with a summit to launch the EU Baltic Sea Strategy for general directors, general secretaries, journalists and 27 Ministers from all EU countries.
· Communication Advisor to the Secretariat of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine with the aim of improving government communication (2005 – 2008). The project provided platforms for communication between state information officers, journalists and civil society representatives. The project resulted in the first handbook in government communication for Ukrainian civil servants. The handbook is today used by all communication officers in the Ukrainian government administration.
· During my second stay in Nicaragua (1999-2001) I was the first international journalist, to report on pesticide Nemagon’s impact on the health of banana workers. Together with the Nicaraguan Centre for Human Rights I assisted in organizing the banana workers to make them claim their rights. I also reported on the process, and one of my articles was awarded as one the best ten articles of the past century in the Swedish magazine Vi.