Your browser doesn't support javascript. This means that the content or functionality of our website will be limited or unavailable. If you need more information about Vinnova, please contact us.

Now there is an opportunity to become a Fellow in Silicon Valley

Published: 20 May 2024

The Utbildningsstipendiet Vinnova Wallenberg Fellow gives professionals within the innovation system the opportunity to spend ten months at Nordic Innovation House in Silicon Valley starting in 2025. As a fellow, you have the opportunity to develop your understanding of the ecosystem in Silicon Valley. Former fellows Åsa Wallin and Marcus Rönngren Liu share their experiences.

This web page has been machine translated. If there are any uncertainties, please refer to the Swedish text.


Former and current fellows Åsa Wallin, Stina Berglund, Laila Adelson and Marcus Rönngren Liu

Åsa Wallin from Linköping University and Marcus Rönngren Liu from Almi were fellows in the years 2022 and 2020–2021, respectively. Åsa is now working with the university's international collaboration and with the platform Future precision health, while Marcus is employed by Sweden-US Green Transition Initiative, which works to promote the introduction of Swedish innovations in the USA and speed up collaboration in research and innovation.

Sweden-US Green Transition Initiative

Applied for the scholarship to develop internationally

Marcus Rönngren Liu tells us that Silicon Valley exceeded all expectations. He had previously worked closely with startups and funding in Sweden and was curious about American models and growth factors.

- My focus was on funding, growth and scaling up the company, says Marcus and continues:

- What I understood first here on site is the impact Silicon Valley has globally. The spillover effect of what happens here is great globally and applies to all industries, from research and innovation to fully commercial products. Sweden suddenly became small when the world became big.

Liksom Marcus also applied for the Åsa Wallin scholarship to explore the possibilities in Silicon Valley. She came with a shared mission from Linköping University and Swelife to explore thematic initiatives in precision health. Swelife is a strategic programme that works to strengthen life science in Sweden.

- For Swelife, the goal was to get to the American market, and for the university it was to develop the presence here and find out what it could mean for the university's internationalisation, says Åsa.

Linköping University has an international strategy with prioritized geographic areas where Bay Area in California is one of them.

- I had already worked with innovation projects in a collaborative format, but wanted to investigate how startups can get connected here to Silicon Valley in the next step. I tried to find partners so that instead of managing one company at a time, we could find cooperation at the fundamental, system level.


Focused on building partnerships

Partnerships, networking, courses and study trips are some of the things that many fellows use their time for when they are on site.

Marcus focused on building partnerships between innovation environments, accelerators and investors that he had his sights set on. To learn more about growth models, he also studied a "certificate programme" on innovation leadership and digitalisation from Stanford's course offering for professionals.

Stanford's Course Offerings for Professionals

Åsa also built networks and explored thematic investments in precision health. She is the first fellow to have worked in precision health, and now leads the platform Future precision health, an effort to strengthen collaborations and partnerships between the US and Sweden in precision health. The goal is a long-term national platform.

Future precision health

The scholarship was a privilege

Both Åsa and Marcus have remained in California. They see the advantages of long-term presence and stable contacts on site. In this way, their efforts continue to benefit Sweden.

Åsa experienced the scholarship as a privilege where she had the opportunity to sit on the first floor when it comes to technical development, implementation and funding.

- I get a lot of questions about how things are done in an international environment, about the system outside of Sweden, and I gained an understanding of that through the scholarship.

Om Fellowship at Nordic Innovation House in Silicon Valley

The purpose of the fellowship is to contribute to the renewal of and create added value for the Swedish innovation system. The home organization in Sweden is an important partner and a platform for the continued work. A first step in the program is to jointly develop an action plan.

  • Two scholarships of ten months each are announced annually.
  • After the scholarship stay, you become part of an alumni network with former fellows, people who are well placed in the Swedish innovation ecosystem.
  • The program is financed by Marianne and Marcus Wallenbergs Stiftelse and administered and supervised by Vinnova.

Alumni network for former fellows


Inger Gustafsson

Programme Manager

+46 8 473 31 15

You have chosen to disallow certain cookies and funtions on our website, such as registering for newsletters. You can change your privacy settings at any time to allow these functions and get a better experience.

Change privacy settings

Last updated 4 June 2024

Page statistics