The History of Nordic Building Forum 


The Energy Efficient Community 

Nordic Building Forum 2011 1st - 3rd of September in Helsinki, Finland (  

Helsinki 2011

NBF in Copenhagen, Denmark 

17th - 19th of September 2009 (Cancelled) 

NBF in Stockholm, Sweden 

20th - 21th of September 2007 
80 year jubilee in Stockholm and the City Hall
250 delegates from all Nordic countries

Theme: Borderless co-operation

Contacts between entrepreneurs and officers
Contacts between politicians and officers
Contacts between entrepreneurs and politicians
Contacts between entrepreneurs
Contacts with other municipalities
Contacts between different professions
Contacts between Nordic countries
Kristina Axén Olin, Finansborgarråd i Stockholms stad 
2007, NBD 27. 

NBF in Iceland 17th - 20th of September 2005 

The Nordic Building Forum 2005 was held in Iceland. The theme for the conference was about how we can make manmade environments better places to live; about the best things done in Iceland and elsewhere and look at model examples with specialists. All this was spiced up with artistic events and appetizing, healthful food. 
Thorvaldur S. Thorvaldsson, Chairman of NBF in Iceland. 

2005, NBD 26


Warsaw 2004 - Urbanization, Growth of Cities and Building Investments in Poland. 

A conference on Urbanization, Growth of Cities and Building Investments in Poland. A century ago only a small part of the world’s inhabitants was living in towns. Today more than half of the population are living in urban areas and it is anticipated that town-life a generation ahead will be the dominating lifestyle worldwide, as already seen in Western Europe to day. 


2004, NBD 25

Oslo/Lillestrom 2003 - the fifth time in Norway

The Nordic Building Forum 2003 was held in Oslo/Lillestrom for the fifth time in Norway. The theme for the conference was "Build for People". The conference was arranged in cooperation between NBF and Bygg Reis Deg 2003. A number of important projects were presented in plenum and also at excursions in the area.

2003, NBD 24

Copenhagen 2002 - 75 years with Nordic Building Forum 

The Nordic Building Forum has 75 years anniversary in year 2002. This event was celebrated by the Danish section of the Nordic Building Forum during the conference: "The New Reality of the Building Industry", 1-3 September 2002 in Copenhagen. In the Nordic countries as well as globally great changes are on its way in the processes of the building industry. Higher quality and higher productivity are the demands from the consumers. The building industry has to deliver more value for money.  

Copenhagen  2002, NBD 23 

 Helsinki 2001 - The 22nd Nordic Building Forum  

The Nodic Building Forum 2001 was held in the City of Helsinki and the metropolitan area. From the 9th of to the 11th of September 2001 the programme presented "Public Toilets and Broken Windows", bus tours and lunches underground, water bus rides, High Tech and Business Parks, wood, steel, the digital tomorrow, Tallinn and St. Petersburg. 

2001, NBD 22 


The History of Nordic Building Forum

It all started in Stockholm Building Society. From its inception in 1848 this society has been a meeting place for all actors in the construction process. To meet there and exchange ideas under relaxed forms in order to develop the feeling for the art of building construction. 
In the middle of the 1920´s a number of leading people in the society asked themselves if this could also be a collective programme for an activity that would embrace all the Nordic countries. 
 Folder about
Nordic Building
In this way Stockholm, in1927, became the host for the first Nordic Building Forum, NBD 1. Ragnar Östberg, architect and chairman of the Forum, described two important objectives of the Building Forum The personal meeting between the various collaborating leading protagonists on a construction project in order to exchange experiences and strengthen the feeling of community. To be able to discuss a problem of great importance for everybody, namely the housing problem. 
Five years later, in 1932, NBD 2 took place in Helsinki, right in the middle of a severe depression period with high unemployment and labour conflicts. Functionalism had made its entry into the Nordic countries, manifested for example at the Stockholm Exhibition of 1930. Gunnar Asplund, the architect, was the principal speaker on the subject of "Architecture and the Environment". The Nordic Building Forum was now established and a long series of Building Forums followed. 

NBD 3 was held in 1938 in Oslo in a spirit of great optimism in spite of international threats. The greatest interest was devoted to technical and economic aspects of housing construction. Alvar Aalto, the architect, spoke on the subject of "The Influence of Materials and Methods of Construction on Modern Buildings".

1938, NBD 3

The war put a temporary end to the Building Forums. By 1946, however, the Danes were prepared to invite all members to NBD 4 in Copenhagen. The Forum was characterised by the post-war situation. The need for housing was enormous in the affected countries and there was a shortage of building material and fuel. Innovations with material saving structures and extremely good heat insulation were presented at the Forum. 
In 1950 it was the turn of Stockholm again. The theme for NBD 5 was "Building Research and practical Results". Among other things "Rationalisation of Construction" was treated. 
NBD 6 was held in 1955 in Helsinki. "Element Construction" had then begun to take its mark and was the theme of the Forum. Among other things the risk was emphasised that crane tracks would hamper the adaption of the buildings to terrain and nature. 

1955, NBD 7.

At NBD 7 in Oslo in 1958 two subjects were treated: "Total Planning" and "Private House Construction". Private houses had previously been built one by one. Now discussions were held concerning mass production in major series. 
At NBD 8 in Copenhagen in 1961 with the theme "Industrialisation of Construction" the subjects discussed included advantages and problems with the series production of housing. 

Copenhagen 1961, NBD 8

At NBD 9 in Gothenburg in 1965 the theme was "City Renewal". On that occasion was emphasised the importance of taking care of and rehabilitating the older housing instead of demolishing them for new constructions. 
In 1968 the Forum was held for the first time in Iceland and Reykjavik. The theme "Forms of Housing" was treated from the architectonic, the technical and the economical viewpionts. 

1968, NBD 10

The first ten Building Forums had their emphasis on technology and architecture. During the three following Building Forums technology was toned down. 
NBD 11 in Helsinki in 1971 had the theme "Renewal of the Building Process" which took up among other things the way in which industrialisation brought in its train new demands on leadership and administration of construction projects. 
At NBD 12 in Bergan in 1974 the theme was "The Future in being built now". The principal speaker emphasised that we must stop being just spectators of our own history. We shall instead take an active part in creating it. 
In NBD 13 in Copenhagen in 1977 the theme was "Construction and Economy". Both economy in construction itself and the role of construction in civic economy was treated. 

Copenhagen 1977, NBD 13

NBD 14 was held in Stockholm in 1980 with a technical theme, "New Technology-better Environment". A housing exhibition observed the 50th anniversary of the Stockholm Exhibition of 1930. 
In 1983 a return was made to Reykjavik with NBD 15. The theme posed a question: "Saturated Housing Market?" The answer was "No!" With the rider that housing must be better integrated to our urban areas. 
NBD 16 was held in 1986 in Helsinki and the Finlandia House. "The Construction Branch in the Computer Age-Vision and Reality" was a useful theme, quite contemporary for an uncertain and tentative branch. 
"Renewal and Tradition" was the theme at NBD 17 in 1989 in Bergen. The town itself could illustrate the Forum´s theme with many fine examples. 

1989, NBD 17.

In 1992 Denmark was the only Nordic country in EU, a reason for giving NBD 18 the theme "Nordic Construction and the International Competitive Ability". 
Up to now the programmes of the Nordic Building Forums had principally consisted of relevant lectures. At NBD 19 in Stockholm in 1996 a somewhat different disposition was tested. The focus of the programme consisted of ten relevant project site visits within the theme "Stockholm Market Place". Furthermore the target group was extended to the other Baltic states. This led moreover to a Building Forum in 1998 in Tallinn, arranged jointly by Estonian and Finnish hosts on the theme "Rejoining Europe". 
NBD 20 was held in Reykjavik in 1999 with the them "The Nordic Countries-The World-2000". The new way entered upon in Stockholm had shown to be successful and appreciated. 
It lived again with NBD 2000 in Malmö and the theme "Öresund Market Place- a Region in Metamorphosis".