50th Congress of the European Regional Science Association: "Sustainable Regional Growth and Development in the Creative Knowledge Economy", 19-23 August 2010, Jönköping, Sweden
By entrepreneurial combinations of voluntary resources, project means from public and private sources, commissions on contracts and other ways of financing, the youth house "Fryshuset", with a great number of social activities for primarily young people in Stockholm, Sweden, has been able to allocate resources for establishing and expanding its activities. This development would not have been possible without struggle against established norms, values, traditions and institutions, not least the informal monopoly that the public sector in practice was having on the fields in which "Fryshuset" emerged. Step by step, "Fryshuset" has built partnerships and alliances with public, private as well as civil actors. Expressed in a general way, "Fryshuset" has built a new social capital, with new links and networks among actors that formerly did not cooperate, and created new norms and values for the carrying through of activities among exposed groups. In a success story like that of "Fryshuset", problems and difficulties might easily be forgotten. A fundamental problem for partnerships and other collaboration across sectoral boundaries is that organizations in different sectors have different aims and thus act according to different principles. These differences lead to the forming of social capitals with important differences in values and networks between the various sectors. Finding a common denominator for establishing collaboration and building a cross-sectoral social capital is thus not an easy task. "Fryshuset" has found entrepreneurial ways to solve this problem. The aim of the paper is to investigate how "Fryshuset" has managed to change established norms, values, traditions and institutions and been able to form a new social capital for the necessary partnerships and alliances. What actors and values etc. have been easy or hard to change? Which partnerships and alliances has been stable and/or been made permanent and which have been unstable and/or dissolved - and what have been the reasons? How has "Fryshuset" marketed itself and its activities towards potential partners?