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Christian Pleijel

Profile picture of Christian Pleijel

About me

My focus is on islands.

I live on a small island in the Åland Islands archipelago, the size of Manhattan but with only 250 inhabitants. I try to understand islands and their societies. Rather than sustainability, I prefer to speak of habitability. A small island out at sea needs jobs, housing, kids, a school, healthcare and ferries. If it is not habitable, it is not a sustainable society. Habitability overrules sustainability. 

I have worked with infrastructure - ferries, energy, water and sewage - on thirty different islands in the Baltic Sea and in Europe. At KTH I was responsible for leadership and change at the Executive School. Now, I work for Ilmatar Offshore making the green transition come true. 

Six years ago, I published a book called "How to Read an Island". It is about the 2,400 small islands of Europe. I try to show how islanders find creative solutions for real, demanding challenges. Two years ago, I cretaed the "habitability" method, intended for islanders who want to understand their own island society. The metod has been further developed by Åbo Academy and the European Parliament.

I want the world to be graspable, I have hens and grow my own potatoes. If you want to know how to make your islands more habitable, I’d love to talk with you.