It begins to rush to find someone who can take over from Anders Olsson.
June 1, he will fill 70 years and falls for åldersstrecket as permanent secretary. Olsson has also clearly indicated that he really intends to come back after just over a year in action, during the most turbulent period in the Swedish Academy's history.
The high drop-out rates from the Swedish Academy have made it extra difficult to find a successor. Most of the ”originalledamöterna” are too old to be considered and several of the nyinvalda younger people have not yet had time to enter the congregation.
Three names – all men – remain. Language researcher Tomas Riad, lawyer Eric M Runesson and litteraturforskaren and the author Mats Malm.
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But for Eric M Runesson is the question not up to date.
" I can't thank yes, I am a newly appointed judge of the Supreme court, and it is a full-time job. This I have as a sideline, he claims on direct question from the TT.
Name two on the list, Tomas Riad, deputizing for a period as permanent secretary when Sara Danius was on sick leave. He has been a long time in the Academy, which speaks for him, but it has kept a particularly low profile when it has been the worst about the department.
One of the arguments against the Riads candidacy is also the jävsanklagelser which appeared in connection with the project targeted to the newly arrived that the Swedish Academy is a part. The project is run by the Riad and his wife is project manager.
The third candidate, Mats Malm, took office as a member as late as in december last year. He lacks, therefore, the experience is usually seen as a plus for a permanent secretary, but was described in connection with the entry as ”a workhorse” with a large capacity and is not associated with any of the scandals that have hit the Academy.
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Mats Malm seems right now as a professor of literature in Gothenburg, at the same time as he is head of the Swedish literature bank, which works with the digitisation of Swedish literature. In conversation with TT, he expresses himself cautiously positive about shouldering the role of the permanent secretary.
" There is nothing I saw in front of me in October when I was asked about the Academy. But this is being discussed and will be decided soon, " he says.
– No, it is not. I have a lot of things for me too, but I don't have such a definite ”no” as Eric has, " he says.
It is not certain that the task which the permanent secretary will be equally burdensome in the future. Discussions are ongoing about how one would be able to relieve the currently rather ungrateful role.
" We need to have a more realistic view of what is humanly possible in this post – not least the pressure from outside, to handle it. It is stressful, not least mentally. It is where we are thinking about quite a lot in the Academy right now, " says Anders Olsson.
As part of the renewal of the Academy, the department has also for the first time appointed a nominating committee which will propose a new permanent secretary.
– We discuss the conclusion which candidate is best suited to succeed me. The process has been in operation for quite some time in the spring, so we hope to be able to resolve this relatively soon, " says Anders Olsson.
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