Global Innovators: Navigating the Gig EconomySemester Course

Future Studies
Week-Long Study Tour
Core Course Week Study Tour
Major Discipline(s)
Entrepreneurship, Leadership Studies, Sociology
Core Course
Fall/Spring semester

The so-called gig economy – characterized by temporary, flexible jobs – is one of the biggest current trends to affect the workplace and has the potential to change how we stitch together our careers. What is the gig economy and the shape of the future workplace – its opportunities and challenges? What skills and mindsets are required to navigate it? How can you profit from your passion? In this course, we take a deep dive into the vibrant and mostly thriving community of young contract workers in Stockholm who have embraced the gig economy with gusto. We examine the opportunities and challenges faced by nontraditional workers in various industries in Sweden and beyond – and explore how business culture is changing to adapt to the new landscape in the market for talent.


Petra Sundell

DIS Stockholm Semester Faculty

Petra is a serial entrepreneur and venture builder focusing on the areas of future of work, future of education, and mental wellbeing. She has a background as a business and market strategist, and a deep passion for the business development, growth and expansion phases of startups. Already at the age of 19, Petra started her first company. She’s since split her time between career-coaching and consulting startups and smaller companies on their growth journeys. In recent years Petra worked as a Community Manager at one of the first and internationally most recognized startup hubs of the Nordics, SUP46, where she supported over 100 startups. She also helped launch TheNordicHub in Sweden, and developed a sweat equity investment strategy for a venture builder concept. Currently, Petra is dedicated to build her latest company, Upbeater, with the mission to help students and startups reach success by offering ways for them to support each other's growth. During 2020, the company will be releasing a new service, the Upbeater Society, supporting even more collaboration opportunities between students and startups through connections, interactions and gigs.


Stylianos Papaioannou

DIS Stockholm Semester Faculty

PhD Candidate in International Entrepreneurship, Uppsala University (Sweden). Starting point of his research was his twice-awarded Master Thesis in Linnaeus University (Sweden), when he researched the Business Strategy of Small Exporting Enterprises. Later, his research focused on the International Entrepreneurship behavior of Small and Medium Sized firms. By designing the research strategy, gathering data for more than 250 Swedish cases, and analyzing both in qualitative and quantitative methods, he contributed to knowledge of the opportunity driven internationalization of firms by his research publications in high ranked peer-reviewed journals. His interests include the entrepreneurial behavior of firms, their business networks, and the attributes of the developed opportunities in terms of novelty and value, as well as explaining the seemingly irrational decision making of entrepreneurs.