East Sweden Region has 430000 inhabitants and covers an area of around 10000km2. The major cities, Linköping and Norrköping, with their surrounding smaller towns and villages, are in the process of developing into one coherent, integrated urban region.  – Sweden´s fourth city region. The region has well-developed support for business start-ups and new enterprises. There are approximately 40000 companies in the region, within more than 540 different business sectors.

One challenge now is to increase the number of social enterprises and further develop support services enabling the social economy to strengthen its position. East Sweden Region has adopted a regional policy on public health (2010), and the work for achieving this policy has involved many stakeholders both at the regional and the local level. Our policy aim is to improve the conditions for equity in health in society, to increase life spans and improve quality of life.

The Regional Council is a regional body with political representation from the members – the regional thirteen local authorities and Östergötland County Council. The main tasks are; Regional development policy, Municipal coordination, Government assignments such as responsibility for the Regional Development Programme and the Regional Public Transport Plan and International relations.

As a partner in MESSE project East Sweden Region look forward to future cooperation and mutual learning.  For East Sweden, developing a regional strategy and a support structure in order to increase the number of social enterprises, will be a vital part in implementing our public health policy.