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Åsa Roxberg

Professor of Nursing, at the School of Health and Welfare. Appointed in 2018.

“Comfort is a mystery that is difficult to capture”

When studying to become a nurse in the 1970s, Åsa Roxberg never heard the word “research”. But an interest in furthering her own education meant that she kept on progressing and she is now Professor of Nursing.

“I wanted to study, and that’s just what I did – as much as I could find that related in some way to nursing at that time.”

Åsa Roxberg defended her doctorate in April 2005 with her thesis “Caring and non-caring comfort”. Comfort, she felt, was an interesting phenomenon to investigate. What is comfort, and what is not comfort?

Her research after defending her thesis was largely characterised by an event that has influenced and become etched in the memory of many Swedes: the tsunami disaster in Southeast Asia at Christmas 2004.

“Like everyone else, I was struck by this terrible event. I also noted that I’d never before heard so much talk about comfort. There and then, my continued research took shape.”

Supervised many doctoral students who write about well-being
Since defending her thesis, she has supervised doctoral students whose theses have in various ways focused on well-being – physical, mental, social and existential.

“We need to understand how suffering and comfort behave so that we are better able to respond to a person who is suffering in various life situations. Because comfort is a mystery that is difficult to capture, there’s no manual – you can experience comfort at the most unexpected moments.”

As a Professor, Åsa Roxberg is looking forward to supervising doctoral students, and in future she hopes to be able to continue research into palliative care in particular.

“That’s a subject that’s very close to my heart,” she says.

HANNA GROSSHÖG
Translation: SEMANTIX

Åsa Roxberg was born in 1953 in Hästveda in northern Skåne. In 1974 she graduated in Nursing from Lund University, with a specialist qualification in Medicine and Surgery, specialising in Geriatric Care. In the 1980s she studied Healthcare in Developing Countries at Uppsala University and worked on, among other things, healthcare and various women’s projects in rural areas of Zimbabwe. In 2005 she defended her doctorate at Åbo Akademi University, Finland, with her thesis “Caring and non-caring comfort”. In 2011 she became Docent in Nursing Science at Linnaeus University, and in 2018 she was appointed Professor of Nursing at Halmstad University.

Picture: DAN BERGMARK

Updated 2018-11-15