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Keynote Speakers



Rishi Goyal

 "Space, place and design in medical and health humanities"
(MD, Director of the Medicine, Literature and Society program, Columbia University)

Dr. Goyal received his MD (2001) and his PhD in English and Comparative Literature (2010) from Columbia University. He was Chief Resident in Emergency Medicine at New York-Presbyterian (2009-10). Before returning to Columbia in 2012, Dr. Goyal was Director of Medical Humanism and Assistant Professor of English Literature and Emergency Medicine at the University of Arizona where he was named Teacher of the Year (2011). 

He is currently an Attending Physician in the Emergency Department at Columbia University Medical Center and a Visiting Professor at the University of Southern Denmark in Odense.






Sarah Curtis (Professor emerita of Health and Risk in Geography, Durham University)

Professor Sarah Curtis holds a BA Hons in Geography from Oxford University and DPhil in Urban and Regional Studies from the University of Kent. Before joining Durham University she worked as Professor in Geography at Queen Mary, University of London.

She is an internationally recognised specialist in the geography of health and wellbeing. Her scholarship explores how and why places matter for human health. Her work concentrates on socio-geographical conditions and processes that are associated with inequalities in health and wellbeing, and risks for physical and mental health, in different contexts.

Newest book:  Space, Place and Mental Health (Geographies of Health Series)




Christian Karlsson

“Design for those who need the most”
(Architect of the new Psychiatric Hospital in Slagelse). 

Karlsson Architects / VLA won the 2-phase competition for the proposal of the new psychiatric hospital in Slagelse which embodies the largest and most ambitious construction for psychiatry in Denmark in more than 100 years and was completed in September 2015.

Christian Karlsson has several international and national architectual awards: Architectual Review Award 2016 (Health Buildings), WAF Award 2016 / Finalist, WAN Award / Finalist, The Construction Client Award 2016, The Danish Architecture Award Farveprisen 2016, Goldlabel Danish Green Building Counsil 2016, The Danish Light Prize 2016 / Finalist and The Danish Architecture Award Tyndpladeprisen 2009.

Currently, Christian Karlsson is an associated Professor at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts, Copenhagen.




Ursula Andkjær Olsen

“Poetry and Health”
(Poet and principal at The Danish Author School.)

Ursula Andkjær Olsen graduated from The Danish Author School in 1999. She has an MA in Musicology and Philosophy (2002). Her debut ”Lulus sange og taler” (2000) marked Olsen as an important danish poet with a polyfonic voice. She has collaborated with several visual artists, latest in her new highly reviewed work ”Mit smykkeskrin” (2020), a collection of poems. 

Ursula has provided poetry for the walls in the new Psychiatric Hospital in Slagelse and been in charge of the decoration in collaboration with the artistMalene Landgreen.

In 2019 Olsen was made principal at The Danish Author School.




Kenneth Holm 

"The world of health care, changes faster than we can manage plan, draw and build it - therefore one of the key elements, for future hospitals, is flexibility."

Kenneth Holm is the Vicedirector of New University Hospital Odense, he has a specialized experience in planning, designing and executing hospital projects. With a hospital project portfolio of more than 1,2 billion euro he has been responsible for some of the big hospital projects in Denmark. His stated goal is to contribute frame better, patient centered, health care facilities that contains the needed flexibility to adopt to future changes. 

Keynote Kenneth




Simon Starling 

"Floral Medicine"

Simon Starling is an English artist, living in Copenhagen. Simon Starling won the prestigious Turner Prize in 2005 and has exhibited at several major museums and participated in exhibitions at Biennials around the world.

The deadly and healing power of nature is central to Simon Starling's work Floral Medicine. The work creates a connection between outside and inside and supports the community between New University Hospital Odense and New University Department for Health, where theory and practice within healing are united.

Keynote Simon Starling


Last Updated 21.06.2021