Star architect to strengthen Norrbotten’s tourism industry

The architect Josefina Nordmark will lead the design-focused development program TUFF (Turistanläggningars Form & Funktion) starting in 2021. The program focuses on developing concepts and customer experience and strengthening the tourism industry’s competitiveness. Treehotel, Camp Ripan and Årrenjarka are examples of previous participants.
– It feels fantastic to lead a new round of TUFF. I am very optimistic about the future of Norrbotten’s tourism industry and if we only manage to take advantage of the qualities that exist here, we have huge potential, says Josefina.

Josefina Nordmark. Photo: Sven-Åke Visén.

→ Related article: “New programmes to boost tourism entrepreneurs”
→ Learn more about TUFF and register your interest in participating

Josefina Nordmark is the founder and CEO of the architect firm Nordmark & ​​Nordmark and adjunct professor of architecture at Luleå University of Technology, where she holds courses and supervises degree projects. She originally comes from Kalix, studied to be an architect at Chalmers and moved home to Norrbotten and Luleå where she lives with her family and her two dogs.

For a better customer experience

In TUFF, Josefina, together with other specialists, guides the participating companies to new insights and a concrete plan for how their facility can be developed. The goal is to improve the visitor’s experience.

The work takes place in a series of meetings at the participating entrepreneurs’ facilities. At each meeting, the specific facility is analyzed together. At each meeting, you also work with a specific theme. Josefina explains:

– The most important thing is to become aware of the importance of the built environment to the visitor’s experience and how it is based on the company’s identity and values. How do parts such as the exterior environment, interior and food form a well-thought-out overall experience? It is about connecting the design in all its parts with who you want to be and make the most of the qualities and potential of the location. We also look at, for example, branding and communication.

Has led TUFF before

Josefina Nordmark led the TUFF round of 2018-2019 and is now back for a second round. The news was well received by LTU Business’ TUFF project manager Monica Äijä-Lenndin:

– We are so grateful to have Josefina with us again, who was so appreciated by the entrepreneurs that participated in the program in 2018/19. In addition, she has a sustainability approach, which we will put extra focus on in this round, says Monica.

As a process leader, Josefina Nordmark keeps the work together and is an advisor together with specialists in areas such as brand development and interior design. She has positive experiences from the previous round.

– All facilities have their own challenges and conditions. The program provides help in understanding which qualities need to be strengthened in order to achieve the greatest effect, in relation to cost. An important focus area is to increase sustainability, says Josefina.

– It was especially enriching with the variety of participants with both small and large facilities, different challenges and the potential that exists in different places. To see their reality and give them advice based on their own thoughts on how they want to develop their facilities.

– The different participants also give a lot to each other. I have experienced that they benefit greatly from the exchange of experience and from networking and building new relationships. The whole group becomes more analytical during the process and there are very fun and rewarding discussions.

What you bring with you

In addition to the insights, inspiration and new contacts, each participant creates a design plan, a comprehensive document, which constitutes a tool and basis for decisions in the continued development of the facility. It also serves as a framework if or when the participant wants to hire, for example, an architect or renew their website.

New for this year is that each participant also receives eight hours of individual counseling.

Date and cost

Based on the current situation with the pandemic and that we would like to conduct physical meetings, we will provide a start date later to everyone who has registered interest.

The initiative is financed with support from the Swedish Agency for Economic and Regional Growth, the Norrbotten Region and the Längmanska Företagsfonden, which enables greatly reduced participation fees for companies that need the program.

→ Learn more about TUFF and register your interest in participating