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Antigypsyist homophobia and LGBTIQ Roma rights in the Nordics

Even though the Nordic countries are at the forefront of LGBTIQ rights in Europe and globally, LGBTIQ Roma are subject to a complex web of intersectional discrimination and marginalization. Little or no research has been carried out on this group in the Nordics, neither are we aware of any specific programmes or activities to support them. This project is a first step towards putting Roma LGBTIQ communities on the agenda in the Nordics. The project aims to provide information about Romani LGBTIQ minorities in the Nordics and the intersectional discrimination they face, including antigypsyist homophobia. The outcome of the project will be a publication with a series of public book launches/seminars in three Nordic capitals (Helsinki, Stockholm and Oslo). The publication will bring the voices of Roma LGBTIQ persons and Roma activists promoting LGBTIQ rightsto the forefront.

The project will provide an overview of good practices from other European countries where Roma LGBTIQ rights movements have grown and visibilized the challenges that these communities face. The aim of the publication is to equip organisations, institutions and stakeholders with relevant knowledge and tools that will raise public awareness about specific forms of discrimination that Roma LGBTIQ people face in order to create an accepting environment that values diversity within LGBTIQ and Roma communities; to combat antigypsyist homophobia; and to support Roma LGBTIQ persons in pursuing their struggle for equality in Nordic societies. The book launches will bring together relevant stakeholders to ensure that the knowledge is communicated to places where it is needed.

Nordic Futures: QTIBIPoC Movement Based Learning

This project builds on a collaboration between five organizations within the Nordic region that have been involved in the growing QTIBIPoC movement. Through research, the project will develop a digital and physical toolkit that stems from the experiences of QTIBIPoCs (Queer, Trans*, Inter* and Black, Indigenous, People of Colour) in the Nordic region and will include a theory and history section, and a practical section. The toolkit will assist in continuous evaluation and learning over the long term, and serve as a knowledge bank and blueprint for working with QTIBIPoCs in the region. We will also arrange a Nordic conference where the research and toolkit recommendations will be presented through workshops, discussions and presentations. The conference will host actors throughout the region, serve as a networking opportunity and provide capacity-building based on the toolkit. This will allow participants to take new skills back to their communities, organizations, and workplaces to strengthen their work with the target group across the region and beyond the project.

QTIBIPoC stands for Queer, Trans*, Inter* and Black, Indigenous, People of Colour.

Nordic network for queer history archives and activities

The aim of this project is to create a network of queer history archives and activities in the Nordic and Baltic countries and to promote the sharing of experience and knowledge and to explore opportunities for partnership, infrastructure solutions, and financial conditions. The network’s partners in Sweden, Finland and Norway have different competences and will use these to conduct their individual seminar days and network gatherings. The seminars will invite queer archives, researchers, cultural heritage professionals and artists from the Nordic and Baltic countries to share experience and knowledge, for development and for partnerships. The network will challenge previous marginalising historiography in the Nordic countries, broaden interest in queer history in the Nordic and Baltic countries, and contribute to a more inclusive view of history. The work to change this view will be communicated through an open digital platform where activities and discussions will be documented and made accessible, and include links to the different LHBTQ archives and history activities.

Enhancing Nordic LGBT+ organisations capacities amidst an international backlash against LGBT+ rights 

The background to the project was the need for closer Nordic co-operation between organisations working for LGBT+ rights. Although the organisation and situation in the countries are somewhat different, we all experience that the LGBT+ population has poorer living conditions and greater challenges than the majority population, and that trends in the world and Europe mean that we must continue to work for equal rights and opportunities regardless of gender and sexuality. ILGA Europe’s rainbow map shows stagnation and decline. The largest LGBT+ organisations in the Nordic region therefore joined forces to organise a conference that brought together staff and activists from across the Nordic region in Oslo on the weekend of 20-22 May 2022.

A total of 100 queer activists and staff from queer organisations gathered in Oslo to discuss and learn about a range of topics that affect queer lives. Participants represented Finland, Åland, Sweden, Sápmi, Norway, Denmark, Iceland, the Faroe Islands and Greenland.

The conference was followed up with a two-hour webinar on 12 December on the topic of the living conditions of queer seniors in a life course perspective in the Nordic countries, hosted by the Norwegian-Swedish research duo Janne Bromseth and Anna Siverskog. There were 30 participants from Finland, Åland, Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Iceland and Greenland.

The conference also saw the establishment of a Nordic LGBT+ council consisting of small and large LGBT+ organisations in the Nordic Region. SETA, Samtökin ’78, RFSL, LGBT+ Denmark and FRI had the main responsibility for the conference and invited organisations from their respective countries and autonomous regions.

The formalisation of a Nordic LGBT+ council and network will enable the exchange of experience and knowledge on how best to strengthen efforts on a more permanent basis.

Network gathering for experience exchange among queers in Sápmi 

Through the project, a network gathering for experience exchange and organizational development among queers in Sápmi was organised. The goal was to strengthen the queer Sami organization and, in that way, creating more and better meeting places for the whole of Sápmi. In the long run, more meeting places and a stronger queer Sami organization will contribute to more openness and knowledge, both among queer Sami, but also among the general population. 

The network gathering gathered participants from the Finnish, Swedish and Norwegian sides, and had two main purposes: 

  • To gather and exchange experiences among queer communities across Sápmi, and talk about the way forward for the queer Sámi organization, as well as to plan future meeting places 
  • Organizational development through getting to know the organizational processes from the various parts of Sápmi and skills development in practical-organizational work 

Feminist and queer solidarities beyond borders

This project established a cross-national network to develop analytic and strategical tools to combat inequalities on the rise in the Nordic region, Russia and Turkey.

The project had two goals:

1) to establish a cross-national and cross-professional network of academics and activists who work on women’s and LGBT-rights in three geographical contexts: the Nordic countries, Russia and Turkey;

2) to develop novel analytic and strategic tools to use in the struggle against gendered, sexualized, ethnicized and racialized inequalities that currently are on the rise in the Nordic region and beyond.

The project deepened and nuanced our understandings of the particularities that characterize the struggles for gender equality in various contexts. It gathered crucial insights into how activists and researchers in these varied locations challenge anti-gender and homophobic policies in times of political backlash against democracy and the rise of the far-right. The project resulted in novel tools that are urgently needed in contemporary struggles against expressions of violence, hatred and inequalities in an increasingly transnational world.

See the network website for more information: Home | Feminist and Queer Solidarities Beyond Borders (

Transforming Identities: Exploring changes, tensions and visions in the Nordic region through the prism of identity politics

Transforming Identities brought together scholars, activists, artists and authors to discuss current challenges to democratic participation and shifting understandings of diversity, minorities, and solidarity. At a time when minorities, broadly defined, are increasingly positioned as threats to majority rights and democratic values, the project explore how and to what ends minority mobilization challenges Nordic social and political landscapes – what’s at stake, why, and for whom?

In three workshops (in Stavanger, Gothenburg and Helsinki) the project explored the impulses for new understandings of equality and rights, solidarity, marginalization and democracy, in the context of the rise of rightwing activism, growing nationalism, local and global insecurities. The project aimed to facilitate collaborations and thinking across disciplines and platforms, expand understandings of how democratic participation transforms the social and the political, and to establish lasting avenues for debate, insights, and new research.

Updated 6 April 2022