Increasing the knowledge about Svalbard

Last week the Svalbard course (“Svalbardkurset”) visited Ny-Ålesund. The course is a 10 day-field exursion along the coast of Spitsbergen with the Norwegian Coast Gurad to gather knowledge about the Arctic, and to discuss central topics related to the management of Svalbard. The course is primarily aimed at Governemntal administrators, case managers and researchers with Svalbard as their field of work.

Through lectures, briefings, excursions and discussions, the course provides an interdisciplinary introduction to Svalbard’s nature and environment, history and cultural heritage, business and society, politics and legal relations. The course emphasize presenting new research and discussing current issues related to Svalbard and the Arctic so that the participants can extend their knowledge about Arctic affaires.

The participants visited many of the cultural heritage sites in Ny-Ålesund. Photo: Christian Zoelly

The Green Shift

This year`s theme was The Green Shift in Svalbard where the participants discussed, among other things, these topics:

  • Is the green shift already underway in Svalbard?
  • What does it take to create communities that are both economically, socially and environmentally sustainable?
  • How environmentally friendly is environmental research?
  • Is there such a thing as sustainable tourism?
  • Green business in Svalbard: what opportunities are there?

In Ny-Ålesund the participants was introduced and participated in activities from The Norwegian Polar Institute, Kings Bay AS, The Norwegian Mapping Authority, The French-German Arctic Research Base (AWIPEV) and got lectures from The University of Grönigen and The National Research Council of Italy (CNR) about the management of Ny-Ålesund and the science that is conducted in the Research station.

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