West Link Project staff: Ulf Angberg, Head of Communications, tells us about his role in the project.
What is your background and how did you come to be involved in the West Link Project?
I have had many different roles within the communications field, such as working for the City of Malmö in the 90's. During the past 14 years, I have worked as the Head of Communications for the Hallandsås Project.
What does your role in the West Link Project entail?
As a government agency, the Transport Administration is required to inform the public of the work we are carrying out. The West Link affects many people, both in and outside of Gothenburg, and therefore we must ensure that these people are able to access information regarding the project. We can do this in several different ways, such as through being available for dialogue or by producing different types of informative material.
My role is to coordinate and lead the communication activities. The work involves coordinating both internal parties and external stakeholders. Ultimately, it is about creating confidence in the project among the general public by openly and honestly communicating the work related to the project.
What is the greatest challenge with the West Link from your perspective?
A great challenge with the communication work is to get out the correct information with regard to the project. At present, there are quite a few myths and occasionally even direct untruths about the West Link are flourishing.
Citizens are not obliged to like the project, but I think it is important that everyone is given the possibility to form their own opinion based on correct facts.
The West Link is a complex infrastructure project in many aspects. In part technically and logistically, but also in terms of being part of a larger whole. Working on this type of project require a great deal of attentiveness as there are many stakeholders and interfaces to take into account.
How will you meet this challenge?
It is natural for people to find change a bit uncomfortable, and this is when communication plays an important role. I believe that, through communication, we can help to reduce people's concerns by stating, as clearly and accurately as possible, the effects that the West Link will have. Both during the construction period and after the project is completed.
It is important for us to create confidence in the project and show people that we are open. We must be able to communicate both positive and negative incidents and demonstrate that we have an honest desire to carry out our assignment in the best way possible for as many people as possible.
What is the most fun part of your job?
It is a great privilege to be able to work with the communication of such a large and complex infrastructure venture that will benefit so many people, both present and future generations.
A particularly important aspect of carrying out this type of project in the best way possible is the relationship with the outside world, and it is fun to be part of that work.
What do you do to relax?
I like diving in my free time, both at home and abroad. I am the most relaxed when I spend time under the water.
Do you talk a lot about the West Link in your free time?
I will probably talk a lot more about the West Link when I move to Gothenburg. At the moment I live in Skåne, and not so many people here are familiar with the West Link. The ones that do know about the project are often positive towards it, as they have seen the effects that the City Tunnel in Malmö has had on the entire Öresund region.