Record many divorces
2013 saw 25,100 marriages come to an end, according to new data from Statistics Sweden. This is the highest number on record since 1975. On an average, the marriages that collapsed had lasted 11 years. Statistics differ between counties, though. In Stockholm the marriages are the shortest, with an average length of 10 years. In Halland’s and Jämtland’s counties they last 13 years on average. Statistics Sweden points out the divorce rate can be calculated in other ways. If, for instance, one looks at the number of divorces in the 30-59 year age group, the couples in Gävleborg divorce the most (23.2 percent) and Jönköping the least (16.7 percent). With this calculation on a city level, Sundbyberg is heaviest with divorces with 27.7 percent and Lomma lowest with 12.1 percent.

No plan for foreign students
Few Swedish institutions have a strategy for taking care of foreign students, according to a new report from Sveriges förenade studentkårer SFS (the Swedish National Union of Students). “We’d have a much higher quality of education, if there were clearer national goals,” says SFS’s vice president Erik Pedersen. In 2012, more than 18,000 students came to Sweden on exchange programs, and many colleges and universities work actively with marketing to attract international students. But once the students arrive, there’s no plan on how to care for them, according to SFS. In the latest report, which daily DN has taken a closer look at, SFS has examined the institutions’ internationalization strategies. Sweden has a national strategy that is based on an increase of the international mobility among students and teachers. But this is a decade old strategy. “We believe internationalization is a quality-driven factor. It’s about how students in Sweden are to meet thoughts, ideas and impressions from other parts of the world, which they’d otherwise not have access to,” Pedersen says. The examination shows that only 30 percent of the institutions, eight to be exact, have some form of valid central control document with goals and measures for internationalization. Five institutions referred to documents that are no longer valid. In some cases the status of these documents was unclear, or not valid after 2014. Seven institutions referred to central policy documents for internationalization that did not include a clear plan of action at all. Another seven referred to documents where internationalization was only included as a minor part. “In many of the cases where one talks about an internationally influenced college, it unfortunately means only that teaching is in English. The risk is that there’s no full picture, that the quality is not pushed forward to make a better education where the students gain more perspective,” says Pedersen. SFS also adds demands in their report. One of these is that the government without delay commences work on producing a new strategy, which points to an internationalization of higher education in Sweden. “Internationalization is a very vague concept and is used differently depending on who uses it. That’s why we’ve written the report. We want to start a conscious debate about internationalization and what it ought to mean.”