Hyper Island

Hyper Island

Hyper Island (former Hyper Island - School of New Media Design) is a digital media and management school established in Karlskrona, Sweden, in April 1996, widely known for its graphic design students and partly funded by the new media industry. It is located on a UNESCO World Heritage Site.


Hyper Island started in 1995 when Jonathan Briggs, David Erixon and Lars Lundh met during a project involving a CD-ROM production. They soon realized the increasing need of a different kind of education involving industry-based learning, for the growing new media industry. Hyper Island's first two-year program started in 1996 with 30 students.

Since the start in 1996, Hyper Islands pedagogic has been successful, and today over 90% of the students with diplomas from Hyper Island works in the industry. With the input of Bo Mattsson, Anna-Lena Rikardsson and Roger Sjögren the unique strong focus on individual development and understanding of interpersonal relationships made the school even more successful. Today, Hyper Island mainly runs the two-year programs; ”Digital Media” (90 weeks), the one-year program "Interactive Art Director" (45 weeks) and ”Business Management” (80 weeks). In total, about 300 students study full time at Hyper Island each year.

Furthermore, Hyper Island works with leadership, team and individual development towards the industry and the public sector. Hyper Island has also been involved in several external projects, such as setting up a two-year management program in Priština, Kosovo together with the Olof Palme Institute and IPKO Institute. . Hyper Island is situated in the south east corner of Sweden, in Karlskrona.


Hyper Island is located in an old military remand prison, seated less than 50 meters from the Baltic Sea on the small Island Stumholmen coord|56|9|37.7598|N|15|35|53.4588|E|. The prison was built in 1910-11. The construction drawings of the military remand prison on the island of Stumholmen was made by F Bothén as late as 1894. A reversed version was made by Sixten C:son Sparre in 1908 but the changes where insignificant. In other words, it was built according to construction drawings which, regarding design and architecture, had not been changed during 70 years. The heating was provided through hot air channels in the walls, a system which at this time must have been as obsolete as the construction drawings of the prison. At first, the building contained 20 cells on the upper floor and 14 on the ground floor. The floors where open in the cell-area to make the supervision easier. Furthermore, there was a barrack room, guardroom, office and a special department with ordinary doors and windows for the gentlemen (officers).

The military remand prison on the island of Stumholmen is one of the most well preserved cell prisons in the country. The close to unchanged interior with individual cells arranged according to the Philadelphia system, open floors and the lantern, gives us a good picture of the conditions inside the remand prison and the disciplinary institutional care. The well-preserved exteriors emphasize the military hierarchy.

After six months of renovation, Hyper Island inaugurated new premises on Stumholmen in January 2004. Previously, this unique building has been used as a large steam central. Today, this is Hyper Islands main premises for lecturers, workshops and other student activities.

In August 2007, Hyper Island opened up a new part of the school at Telefonplan in Stockholm.


Hyper Island has been running the 90-week qualified vocational education Digital Media. Well-known magazines such as Creative Review, Computer Arts and New Media Age have been publishing several articles on student projects and Hyper Islands unique educational environment. Hyper Island has also been a case-study for the British Government to advise on future educational systems in the UK. In the year 2000, Hyper Island was appointed as the best Digital Media institution in Sweden by the industry.

Since 2004 Hyper Island is running the two-year advanced vocational program, Business Management. The program aims to create visionary leaders within small to medium sized companies and organizations, no matter business area.


The two programs "Digital Media" (90 weeks) and "Business Management" (80 weeks) are work-oriented programs. Both programs are linked to the industry and applies teaching and learning approaches that are directly relevant to working life.

The work-education connection is demonstrated within a number of areas; in the construction of projects/courses, in the choice of teaching approaches, physical environment and educational materials, in the design of examinations and in the educational background and experience required of the teachers and trainers. The working life connection is most expressed during a period of placement. This is when the students get the chance to work in a company as a trainee. Instead of a fixed curriculum, the courses revolves around a set of projects created with industry professionals.

The projects start out with different themes, where each theme is explored from several perspectives: design, project management, leadership, branding, marketing, industry- and market issues, programming etc. This gives the students a general picture of the industry and provides a deeper understanding for production processes and general development systems.

Official links

* [http://www.hyperisland.se/ Official Website]

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