Mistra Sport & Outdoors is a research and co-creation programme that aims to generate knowledge and solutions for increased sustainability within sport and outdoor recreation. We believe that co-creation between researchers, organisations, public authorities and companies is the way forward.

Mistra Sport & Outdoors

Many of us practise sport or outdoor recreation in one way or another. Some 4.6 million Swedes belong to a sports or outdoor organisation and many more play sport, spend time in nature, watch sport or drive to activities.

Imagine the effect on society if we can find solutions to our environmental challenges to which everyone can contribute, sport and outdoor enthusiasts as well as authorities, companies and organisations.

Six research themes

The research at Mistra Sport & Outdoors is made up of six themes:

  • Knowledge and transformation

  • Sustainable transport solutions

  • Sustainable use of land and water

  • Material and sustainable equipment

  • Sustainable events

  • Behaviour, policy and future change

Read more about our six themes 


Co-creation throughout the programme

Co-creation permeates Mistra Sport & Outdoors:

  • We identify challenges together

  • We generate learning and solutions together

  • We communicate and start a movement for sustainability together

Co-creation means working in a way in which different actors, expertise and knowledge meet to identify possible routes to more sustainable development. Through co-creation, we increase the relevance of the research and strengthen its quality. It also means that we increase the chances of solving our environmental challenges, making the knowledge even more relevant and useful.

Read more about our way of working


Many participants

The environmental question is big and complex and no one actor can solve the challenges by itself. Many of us must participate in order to succeed.

That’s why at Mistra Sport & Outdoors, we co-create with many different parts of the society. Researchers from different disciplines and universities work together with partners from sport, outdoor recreation, companies and authorities to generate knowledge and solutions, and to make it easier for sport and outdoor recreation to use them. The idea is to start a movement in sport and outdoor recreation to increase sustainability.

Find our partners


Objectives of the programme

The starting point for the programme is the environmental challenges we face and the long-term objectives of the programme are to jointly:

  • To find and implement sustainable solutions in practice. Produce research at the international forefront

  • Start a movement for sustainable development in sport and outdoor recreation

  • Work to establish a network-based development centre for sustainable solutions

Mistra Sport & Outdoors shall help Sweden reach the 2030 Agenda Sustainable Development Goals.

Read more about Agenda 2030



Mistra Sport & Outdoor has a board with representatives in the different areas of the programme. The board’s work shall include establishing the plans and budget for the programme, directing and following up the research that has been carried out, and deciding on the strategic reserve of the programme. The board also has an important role in promoting active involvement by different users and communicating the information about the programme and the research results effectively. Full guidelines for the board’s work can be found on Mistra’s website.

  • Eva Thörnelöf, Chair

  • Peter Mattsson, Head of Development, Swedish Sports Confederation

  • Ulf Silvander, Secretary-General, Svenskt Friluftsliv (Swedish outdoor life)

  • Christiane Dolva Törnberg, Sustainability Manager, Fjällräven

  • Maria Johansson, Professor, Faculty of Engineering, Lund University

Programme Co-ordinator at Mistra, Åsa Moberg, co-opted to the board.


Programme plan

The activities of Mistra Sport & Outdoors are governed by a programme plan (PDF) approved by Mistra. It has two parts. The first part (Part A) is based on application and is fixed during the first four years of the programme. The second part (Part B) describes our activities and deliveries in more detail and is revised annually. We have also developed a special annual wheel (PDF) showing major events for the whole programme for each calendar year.


Mistra finances
The Swedish Foundation for Strategic Environmental Research, Mistra, is financing the initiative with SEK 56 million, and our partners (including participating universities) are contributing SEK 14 million, making a total of SEK 70 million over four years. Funding is possible for a further four years.


Read more about Mistra