Elisabet Edvardsson told us about her experience travelling by train in Europe and Alice Schmidt-May gave a following talk about how to travel to the continent by boat from Nynäshamn to Rostock. Paul Glantz from ACES was also invited to tell us about the work at his department to reduce travels and how they succeeded to get more employees to choose train instead of flying. For example they were first to offer compensation for more expensive train tickets that we recently also have introduced.        

Group discussions about travelling , internationalization and digitalisation

We ended the seminar with group discussions how we can reduce travelling and what obstacles there are, for example, the conflict between internationalization and less travels, experiments that need to be performed on sight or the life puzzle for parents with small children. But there are also benefits to meet digitally, it can be easier to participate in meeting and it can be more inclusive. Interesting proposals were also discussed like for example international conferences can have different smaller meetings in each continent to shorten travels for the participants, but at the same time offer face-to-face meetings. Also one can try to combine conferences with other research meetings.   

Other proposals are that Fysikum and Stockholm University can be better to promote the travel policy to employees and improve the possibility to book train tickets at the travel agency. It was also discussed if restrictions can be implemented to reduce flight travels.

Fysikum förordar tåg istället för flyg på tjänsteresor

Travels shorter than 700 km are not allowed by plane

The President of Stockholm University signed in 2019 UN climate goals to be carbon dioxide neutral 2040. Last year Stockholm University decided on a new policy for travels and meeting. IN that policy it is stated that all travels shorter than 700 km have to be done with other transport than airplane, employees have to avoid stops before end destination when flying and to prioritize travel free meetings. It is not allowed to go back and forth the same day if you can participate in the meeting digitally. The policy can be found here.  Policy för möten och resor - Medarbetarwebben (su.se)  
Fysikum has already taken measures to ease travels by train. Fysikum pays for the difference in price between a more expensive train ticket if a cheaper flight ticket can be found. It is also allowed to go first class when travelling by train to make it easier to work on the train. 

Do you have suggestions for improvements?

If we shall achieve SU climate goal we need to act now to reduce our travels. Do you have suggestions for improvements, please contact the environmental representative at Fysikum. All of us are responsible to follow the environmental policy and Fysikum will continue the environmental work to reduce our carbon emissions.