• A page about Alf Rehn.

    Don't worry, you'll like it. And normal service will resume shortly.

    Alf is 43, a management professor, an internationally recognized business thinker (or something), an author and a speaker. He is currently holding the Chair of Management and Organization at Åbo Akademi University in Finland, was earlier the SSES Professor of Innovation and Entrepreneurship at the Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm, Sweden, and has in addition taught at universities all over the globe.
    As a business thinker (or something), He has been called an “enfant terrible of organization studies”, while the venerable The Times called him a “star of the future”. The 2009 Thinkers 50, the listing of the world’s top 50 business thinkers, included him on their “Guru Radar”, ranking him #13 among the “Up and Coming Business Thinkers”. Oh, and in the Finnish Thinkers 20-list, he was rated the #3 business thinker in Finland (#1 among academics). He is also listed internationally as a Top Professor On Twitter. His mother thinks he’s pretty neat as well, but his kids can’t really see what all the fuss is about.
    As a business writer, Alf has published a wide range of academic stuff, but also a series of books, articles, and columns for a general audience. You can find some of his books and other stuff further down.
    Born in Finland, but raised in more than a dozen places, Alf stopped for long enough to get a MSc in business studies despite spending most of his time reading philosophy, sociology and cultural studies, and later – even more improbably – got a doctorate in technology (Industrial Management) while reading and writing about anthropology and behavioral sciences. His thesis on gift economies and new organizational forms discussed piracy and collaboration long before it became fashionable, and got him enthusiastic about looking for the bleeding edge of economic developments. Despite this, he got a chair in management at the advanced age of 31 years old. His "grown-up" research (and we use the term "grown-up" very loosely here) has focused on moralization, ideology and critique, as well as things such as haute cuisine, innovation, accidents, popular culture, cannibalism, philosophy, boredom, entrepreneurship, rap lyrics, project management and luxury. Surprisingly enough, this research has been published in top international journals and prestigious books. Even more surprisingly, he's still curious about the world.
    He currently lives in both Finland and Denmark, as well as in a range of hotel rooms and airport lounges around the world. He drinks too much coffee, not enough water, and is a devoted fan of Ethel Merman and the divine Patsy Cline.
  • Thinking Askew

    It's Alf's newsletter. All the good stuff, none of the calories. Check it out here.

  • Keynoting Like You Give A Damn

    Yeah, he does that.

    Speaking at Ciudad de las Ideas (Puebla, Mexico) in November 2013

    Alf frequently works as a speaker at various events, ranging from keynoting major conferences or events for global corporations, to giving interactive sessions and workshops for smaller groups. He has talked at spas, in converted barns, after saunas, and was once bookended by a star of musical theater and an astronaut.

    He's pretty good at it, too. He was voted Speaker of the Year in Finland in 2010, and has gotten top marks and rave reviews at conferences around the world. Some claim it's the jokes. Others that it's the take-aways. We think it is because he actually enjoys being on stage.

    Alf's speaking engagements are handled by SpeakersNet. You can make inquiries through their online form, or contact them at: +46 (0)8 545 688 66 or mail them at info@speakersnet.se

  • Alf writes stuff. Mainly books.

    He can't seem to help himself.

    Unelmien talous ( in Finnish )

    Unelmien talous on kokoelma kolumneja taloudesta, Suomen tulevaisuudesta, yrittäjyydestä, politiikasta, johtamisesta, taiteesta ja strategiasta, matkustusneurooseista ja kateudesta. Niin, ja vanhuksista, lapsista, nuorista, sekä niistä peleistä ja kirjoittamattomista säännöistä, jotka määrittelevät sosiaalista elämäämme. Ruokaa unohtamatta. Toisin sanottuna teos sisältää monenlaista pohdintaa, mutta ei lainkaan transrasvoja.
    Tekstit on valittu Alf Rehnin tuotannosta vuosien varrelta. Kirjassa yhdistyvät toimivaksi kokonaisuudeksi lehti- ja radiokolumnit, blogikirjoitukset, kommentit ja huomiot. Mukana on myös varta vasten kirjaan kirjoitettuja uudenkarheita juttuja.
    Kirjaa voi tilata vaikkapa tästä:

    Trendspotting – The Basics

    If you’re tired of paying so-called experts to tell you about how to capitalize on trends, then why not figure out how to do it on your own? Trendspotting – The Basic is a short book for the person curious about trends and how to work with them, originally written as part of the iOS app TrenderRather than presenting an exhausting catalogue of individual trends or methods of trend analysis, this guidebook quickly gives you the tools you need to get out there and start spotting, including basic terminology, fundamental principles and tools, and methodology. You will learn how to

    – identify micro-, macro-, mega-, and gigatrends;
    – avoid the pitfalls that can make you over-interpret what you see;
    – determine how trends can and will interact with each other; and 
    – apply the methodologies that will work best for you.
    Trendspotting can be fun as well as profitable. Coming in contact with different cultures and ideas gives you the opportunity to celebrate the weirdness and beauty of the world; it offers you the chance to challenge your own worldview and preconceived notions. You too can go out into the wild world of trends, learning a variety of ways to live and work and love, and Trendspotting—The Basics can help you on the way.

    Dangerous Ideas

    Dangerous Ideas is a bestselling book on creativity for people who do not like books on creativity. Written by Alf and translated to eight languages (including Chinese, Russian, Spanish and Italian), it challenges the overly positive manner in which creativity is often presented and argues for a broader understanding of the phenomenon – including paying attention to disgusting, childish and unseemly things. For only by daring to push far beyond the realm of the serious and the proper can you truly challenge a business, a system, or yourself.
    Some have loved it, others hated it, and a lot of people have said it challenged the way the think about creativity. As Alf is now bringing it out as a free ebook, it's never been easier to form your own opinion. 

    Frivolous Business

    Books on business, management, and the economy tend to be very serious—sometimes to the point of being unreadably dull. But the real world of business isn’t just about the serious; it’s filled with frivolities, playfulness, excess, and pure pataphysics.
    This collection of essays explores the other side of economics in a celebration of the silly, the stupid and the sometimes seriously unreal. It considers a wide range of subjects, including toys, really expensive hamburgers, copycat entrepreneurs, cartoons, and dressing up for the office.
    As with so many things in life, the seriousness of the subject matter depends entirely on perspective. One person’s frivolity is another’s professional business interest. Rather than making the frivolous serious, take a serious approach to frivolity and rediscover the fun and the fabulousness of our economic world. It all adds up to a lot of Frivolous Business.
  • More stuff Alf is working on/with.

    He's a little weird like that.

    Satumaa Family Business

    One of the things Alf does when he isn't speaking or writing is that he's chairman of the board of Satumaa Family Business, a super-nifty international advertising agency with clients such as Absolut, Electrolux, L'Oréal and Telia. They've won a Gold Lion at Cannes, made tons of money for their clients, and the best is definitively yet to come.

    Old Ideas! Inc

    Old Ideas! is a strategy boutique that focuses on the gericonomy – the shift in the economic nexus brought on by the manner in which our societies are aging. Rather than seeing this as a problem, Old Ides! approaches it as a possibility to generate new value, even new wealth.

    LA Game Space

    Alf is proud to be a SuperFounder and on the Board of Directors of LA Game Space, a Nonprofit Center for Videogame Art × Design × Research where people of all backgrounds can discover the potential of games together. The Space consists of: Exhibitions, Talks+Workshops, the Artist Residency, and Research Labs.
  • Twitter

    Because, you know, tweets.

  • Getting in touch

    If your email is about speaking, writing or event based, please email my lovely agents at info@speakersnet.se – they're terribly nice and will get back to you soonest.

    If you wish to contact me directly then use the links below and I will get back to you as soon as I can. Thanks.

  • Press Kit / Photos

    All images behind the link are free to use – but the photographer must be mentioned.