Talks & Topics
Talks & debates

New Myths of the North

Part of World on the Brink

Are Nordic countries really modern day utopias? Our speakers discuss the realities of daily Nordic life in this talk.

Regularly ranked as among the happiest nations in the world, the Nordic nations are renowned for pioneering progressive policies and a balanced approach to life. But is life there more equal, more sustainable, and better designed?

What are the achievements which we could learn from? How do these compare to the challenges that need to be faced?

Part of Nordic Matters

Michael Booth is the award-winning, bestselling author of six works of non-fiction, including The Almost Nearly Perfect People: Behind the Myth of the Scandinavian Utopia (Cape), which was a BBC Radio 4 Book of the Week and winner of the British Guild of Travel Writers Best Book award. His latest is The Meaning of Rice: And Other Stories from the Belly of Japan, published in October (Cape). Previous books include Sacré Cordon Bleu, which was also a BBC Radio 4 Book of the Week, and Sushi and Beyond, winner of the 2010 Guild of Food Writers' Kate Whitman Award. Michael's journalism appears regularly in The Guardian, among many other publications in the UK and globally. He is a correspondent for Monocle magazine and Monocle 24 Radio, and travels regularly to give talks and lectures on the Nordic lands.

Elisabeth Åsbrink is a writer and journalist, based in Stockholm and Copenhagen. She has been nominated for the August Prize three times and won it for best non-fiction book 2011 for And in Wienerwald the trees are still standing. For the same book she was awarded the prestigious Ryszard Kapuscinski Award for Literary Reportage in 2013. Her latest book is 1947: when now begins (Scribe).

Dates & times

This event has passed.


Royal Festival Hall
St Paul's Roof Pavilion, Level 6, Blue Side


Included in Pass
£20, £35

need to know

This event is included in both the World on the Brink Saturday Pass and the World on the Brink Weekend Pass.