You've found us in English! The English version of TechSavvy.media is currently only available in a beta version. This means, among other things, that the majority of articles are machine translated. We hope you'll still want to stick around a little longer

From Silicon Valley to Nordic Valley: Thirdroom creates digital collaboration with a new set of values

@Redaktionen

As a startup, you need a good network. That’s why startup Thirdroom has created a social ecosystem platform that makes it easy for research and student startups to collaborate digitally – and where Nordic values are paramount.

As a startup, you need a good network. That’s why startup Thirdroom has created a social ecosystem platform that makes it easy for research and student startups to collaborate digitally – and where Nordic values are paramount.

This post is also available in: Danish

Hubert Dreyfus and a young Alfred Birkegaard

It was the meeting with world-renowned philosopher Hubert Dreyfus, who had been working with computers and AI since the 1960s, that really ignited the spark for Thirdroom.

Dreyfus was a PhD supervisor for Alfred Birkegaard at Berkeley University, and he opened his network to Alfred and his wife Katja, where they met Vint Cerf (the father of the internet), Terry Winograd (co-author of Pagerank and PhD supervisor to the two Google founders) and Howard Rheingold, who has been working with the possibilities of computers ten years before we in Denmark even knew what computers were.

Over 30 years ago, the great thinkers predicted how the internet would revolutionise the world of work, bring freedom and create new forms of global collaboration. But they were also stunned by how companies like Facebook and Google have used that freedom to shape the world with aggressive algorithms and data harvesting. But they also took umbrage at how companies like Facebook and Google have used the freedom to shape the world with aggressive algorithms and data harvesting.

“We have been fascinated and seduced by what has come out of Silicon Valley over the last 50 years – with good reason; from the computer revolution, Apple and Google, Facebook and Microsoft to the latest developments in AI and ChatGPT. But we’ve been asleep in Europe and got carried away by the American dream of bigger and better,” says Alfred Birkegaard.

The meetings led to the realisation that there is a need for a collaboration platform created from the pioneers’ vision and built on Nordic values. A platform without constant disruption, but instead focused on being a new digital space designed for deep collaborations.

“We feel obliged to translate our insights into a new, data-ethical and innovative space for our future generations. And that’s what we’re trying to do with Thirdroom,” says Birkegaard.

Alfred’s PhD turned into a documentary

An open network

Thirdroom’s goal is ambitious, and the journey has been long. The platform has been tested as an early prototype at RUC and Novozymes, where the software helped students and impact startups around the world. After more than two years with some talented coders, two AI specialists and a board of experienced entrepreneurs, the founders can now open the doors to Thirdroom 2.0.

The first version of the platform was primarily created for students and researchers to share knowledge, communicate and collaborate across the platform. In the new version, a startup universe has been added where Thirdroom, existing users and selected partners help startups grow from prototype stage to scaling.

“We want to bring together the best network of actors who are fighting to change the world for the better. More than ever, we need young enthusiasts with a drive to solve the many global challenges we face, and we will therefore do everything we can to ensure that all impact startups get what they need when they need it,” says Katja Birkegaard.

With the addition, Thirdroom expects to bring together half of the Nordic universities and their incubators by the end of 2025. The first major Nordic partner is currently on the way in the form of Swedish Ideon, the oldest and largest university accelerator in the Nordics.


Fact: Meet Thirdroom – and 7 other promising startups at the Digital Tech Summit:The eight universities have each selected one startup to be invited to pitch their solution at this year’s Digital Tech Summit on November 8-9. Thirdroom has been selected to represent RUC.


Er du investor - eller bare ekstra nysgerrig?

Tilmeld dig nyhedsbrevet "Investornyt", hvor du får portrættet af Ugens Startup med ekstra baggrundsviden og en oversigt over de seneste investeringshistorier i økosystemet lige i indbakken.

Vi spammer ikke! Læs vores privatlivspolitik hvis du vil vide mere.

FLERE FRA COMMUNITY