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The China-Nordic Research Center (CNARC) was established in Shanghai on 10th December 2013 by 10 Member Institutes, four Chinese and six Nordic, which all have capacities to influence and coordinate Arctic research. CNARC’s purpose is to provide a platform for academic cooperation to increase awareness, understanding and knowledge of the Arctic and its global impacts, as well as to promote cooperation for sustainable development of the Nordic Arctic and coherent development of China in a global context. CNARC’s research themes include:

  1. Arctic climate change and its impacts,
  2. Arctic resources, shipping and economic cooperation, and
  3. Arctic policy-making and legislation.

CNARC activities will include (a) carrying out joint research projects in accordance with the research themes, (b) developing Arctic research networks and frontiers by providing opportunities for Chinese and Nordic scholars to conduct Arctic research through fellowships and scholarships, (c) convening regularly the China-Nordic Arctic Cooperation Symposium and other workshops, and (4) facilitating information sharing and cultural exchange between China and Nordic Countries in Arctic context. CNARC will offer fellowships for scholars and scholar-/ internships for students at Nordic and Chinese institutes to conduct collaborative research within CNARC network for a period of one to six months.

Symposia and meetings CNARC shall meet on a yearly basis in form of China-Nordic Arctic Cooperation Symposium on a predetermined topic with regards to the Arctic research. Member institutes shall take turns to host the Symposium, rotating annually between Chinese and Nordic member institutes. CNARC can also host workshops independently or jointly with other organizations.

CNARC is composed of an Assembly of Member Institutes (hereafter named the Assembly), a Director and a Secretariat. The Assembly is formed by representatives from each member institute, and operates by consensus. The Chair of the Assembly is a Chinese representative, while a co-chair comes from a Nordic Member Institute. The Assembly provides recommendations on collaborative research priorities and projects, on candidates of fellowships, and advices on organization of the Symposium, and operation of the Secretariat. The Director and Secretariat are hosted by PRIC. They are responsible for the operation of CNARC and carrying out advices for development from the Assembly.

The director is the executive leader according to the objectives and priorities of CNARC and has the duty to carry out recommendations offered by the member institutes. The director shall have responsibilities, to manage work programs approved, and to take initiatives and put forward proposals in order to ensure the efficient execution of CNARC’s work. The director shall work in a neutral capacity and serve terms of two years. The role of vice-director(s) is to provide assistance to the director. Secretariat The Secretariat shall be located at the Strategic Studies Division, PRIC, in Shanghai and consist of a staff in charge of communication and coordination with Chinese and Nordic member institutes respectively. The duties of the Secretariat are to help coordinate work programs, facilitate information exchange, prepare annual report of CNARC, circulate CNARC newsletters, administer the fellowship and scholarship programs and coordinate symposia in cooperation with respective host institutes.

Inauguration of the China Nordic Arctic Research Center

Polar Research Institute of China PRIC


Summary of minutes for the First Assembly of Member Institutes of CNARC

Session 1

1.1 Organization and operation of CNARC’s Assembly of Member Institutes &
1.2 Operation of CNARC’s Secretariat

The “Terms of Reference for the China-Nordic Arctic Research Center” were accepted by the Assembly and its
sub-document, the “Terms of Reference for the Assembly of Member Institutes and Secretariat”, was also accepted
after slight modifications clarifying the role of the Assembly, Director(s) and Secretariat.

For the position of Director and Vice Directors the following was proposed by Yang Huigen and passed by the
Assembly. CNARC shall have one Director and two Vice Directors:

  • Director of CNARC: Yang Huigen, Director of PRIC.
  • Vice Director of CNARC: Yang Jian, Vice President of SIIS.
  • Vice Director of CNARC: Zhang Xia, Head of the Division of Polar Strategic Studies at PRIC.

1.3 Research priorities of CNARC in 2014

Research themes of CNARC as defined in the Terms of Reference, may include:

  • Arctic climate change and its impacts
  • Arctic resources, shipping and economic cooperation
  • Arctic policy-making and legislation

It was suggested that the aforementioned topics could serve as general direction of CNARC’s research priorities and that they could be broadened on a case basis if needed. The research priorities cover both natural and social sciences and are open towards multidisciplinary research. The research priorities are likely to, but do not necessarily have to in all cases, reflect CNARC’s Fellowship projects and Symposia. It was decided by the Assembly that discussion on the research priorities should take place within a two to four year term and to leave the specifics of them out for now, while underlining the importance of defining these shortly. It was also agreed that further clarification on the term Nordic Arctic is needed; this should especially be taken to consideration by the editorial board of CNARC’s book project(s) on the Nordic Arctic.

Session 2

2.1 CNARC Publication project on the Nordic Arctic

It was decided that a book on the Nordic Arctic would be the first major undertaking of CNARC, with around 24 people/month allocated to the project. Two proposals for the project were put forward to the Assembly, (1) by Dr. Leiv Lunde, Director of the Fridtjof Nansen Institute, and (2) by Dr. Lassi Heininen, Professor at the University of Lapland. Both proposals were well-received by their own merits but after a lengthy discussion the assembly decided that the project proposed by Dr. Leiv Lunde, “Understanding Nordic Arctic Interests and policies” would be more suitable for a wider audience and as a foundation for the CNARC cooperation. The assembly furthermore agreed to keep Dr. Lassi Heininen’s “Proposal for Draft Outline of the Publication “The Nordic Arctic”” as a potential second book project, with its more theoretical scope and in-depth academic research. The following candidate were proposed and accepted by the assembly for the editorial board of the frst book on the Nordic Arctic:

  • Leiv Lunde, Fridtjof Nansen Institute
  • Lassi Heininen, University of Lapland
  • Yang Huigen, PRIC
  • Yang Jian, SIIS

Dr. Yang Huigen will be the coordinator of the editorial board, structure the work hereof and take relevant initiatives. Mr. Egill Thor Nielsson shall be the Secretary for the editorial board.

2.2 Other projects for CNARC cooperation

It was agreed upon by the Assembly that the initial discussions on the content and structure of the book(s) would provide a base for the further work of the editorial board/committee. It was established that the final decisions regarding the publication project(s) shall be decided upon by the editorial board.

2.3 Fellowships and scholar/internships

The Assembly agreed that there was a need to establish a subcommittee to handle fellow- and scholarships. The nominations for this committee was made on considerations for equal representation between China and Nordic countries, as well as equal representation between academic fields i.e. social and natural sciences. The following were nominated and elected to the subcommittee for fellowships, scholar- and internships by unanimous vote:

  • Zhang Xia, PRIC
  • Guo Peiqing, OUC
  • Thorsteinn Gunnarsson, RANNIS
  • Representative from the Swedish Polar Research Secretariat

The subcommittee for fellowships, scholar- and internship will be responsible for call for applicants and the process in general. The Assembly accepted that fellowships and scholarships should be given out on competitive basis.

Session 3

3.1 The 2nd China-Nordic Arctic Cooperation Symposium

It was agreed that the next symposium is to be hosted by RANNIS in Akureyri (Iceland), approximately June 3rd - 5th 2014.

3.2 Next Assembly of CNARC's Member Institutes (and new members to CNARC)

The next assembly of CNARC's Member Institutes is to be held in conjuction with the 2nd China-Nordic Arctic Cooperation Symposium, most likely the day before the Symposium itself begins.

Tasks identifed in need of being addressed at the next Assembly are the criteria for new Member Institutes. Until they have been established the Assembly adopted by consensus to limit the amount of Member Institutes for one or two years to let CNARC find its way before accepting more Member Institutes. These considerations were mainly aimed towards Nordic applicants, with the exception of potentially including a fully Danish Member Institute, as NIAS is more of a Nordic entity. Different criteria will be adopted for Chinese applicants and during the assembly an application from Shanghai Jia Tong University - Center for Polar and Deep Ocean Development (SJTU-PADOD Center) for Member Institute status of CNARC was accepted.



The Inauguration of CNARC and Assembly of Member Institutes were both successful events, with the Inauguration attracting worldwide interest and the Assembly taking place in good cooperative spirit. The excellent start of CNARC leaves much room for optimism and there seems to be much will from all parties involved to create a fruitful platform for future China-Nordic Arctic cooperation. Next steps that will follow in coming weeks include the activating the two subcommittees’ on the Nordic Arctic Book Project and CNARC’s Fellow-, intern- and scholarship programs. The secretariat will provide support the activities of this committees and RANNIS in regards to the 2nd China-Nordic Arctic Cooperation Symposium, as well as start working on a website for CNARC and other issues. The preparatory work has started but it is to be expected that things start moving in January 2014 and that CNARC will become an active cooperation platform early 2014.


News Report Selections

First Assembly of Member Institutes of CNARC taking place at Dongshan, Suzhou City

by Suzhou Evening Newspaper - 11th December 2013

On 10th December 2013, dozens of Chinese and Nordic experts on Arctic research gathered at the town of Dongshan in Suzhou, for the First Assembly of Member Institutes of the China-Nordic Arctic Research Center (hereinafter “CNARC”) to jointly promote multilateral cooperation on Arctic research following the inauguration ceremony of CNARC that took place in Shanghai in the morning of the 10th December. Why was Suzhou chosen as the location for the First Assembly? Suzhou is the hometown of Dr. Yang Huigen, Director-general of the Polar Research Institute of China, who explained that the attraction of Suzhou as a venue for this important event derives from its placidity, friendliness and profound culture.

Why is the focus shifting towards social science?

In Shanghai, on 10th December 2013, the Polar Research Institute of China (PRIC), along with six institutes from the Nordic countries as well as three other institutes from China signed the Cooperation Agreement on the CNARC to formally mark its inauguration. The founding member institutes of CNARC shall conduct joint research projects related to the Arctic and promote extensive cooperation in the field of the Arctic politics, economy and culture.

Dr. Yang noted that PRIC originally focuses more on natural science studies; however, the Arctic is going through rapid climate-and environmental changes. It is far from enough to understand these changes from the narrow perspective of natural science (e.g. ice, snow and atmosphere circulation). He explained that the Arctic region has eight sovereign states, in which human activities and the natural environment interact and influence each other; accordingly, it is necessary to take into consideration the social and human aspects in the Arctic research

“In order to have an in-depth and comprehensive understanding of the Arctic, we should cooperate with the Arctic states”, says Prof. Zhang Xia, Head of the Polar Strategic Studies Division of PRIC. China started relatively late in the field of Arctic research; in comparison, the Nordic states lead globally in scientific research and economy, but with deficiencies in terms of population and infrastructures, they are likely to cooperate more closely with external actors in the face of the challenges of climate change. China possesses rich resources in capitals, market and labor forces, which lays the foundation for the China-Nordic cooperation.

Prof. Zhang says that the focus of CNARC is shifting towards social science with the purpose of "building the bridges” so that the two parties would have enhanced understanding of each other.

Why Suzhou is chosen for the Assembly?

From the 10th - 11th December, the First Assembly of Member Institutes of CNARC took place at the town of Dongshan. The representatives from the ten member institutes gathered at the side of Taihu Lake to have a discussion on the operating mechanism of CNARC and its working plan for 2014. Dr. Yang stated that “For the meeting on Arctic research on such a high level, cultural exchanges constitute an important agenda. Suzhou was chosen to hold the Assembly for its tranquil environment, amicable atmosphere and profound cultural background.”

First Assembly of Member Institutes

According to the introduction of Dr. Yang, China has in fact already established bilateral cooperative ties with Nordic states, notably Iceland and Finland. Last year, upon the invitation of the Icelandic President, Snow Dragon, the Chinese icebreaking research vessel, officially visited Iceland. This year China and Iceland cooperated on the construction of an aurora observatory. Furthermore, a Finnish company is working on the design of China’s first icebreaker. “Through a series of cooperation approaches, we have the deep feeling that the Nordic States attach great importance to culture," Dr. Yang says. This is the reason why cultural exchanges are taken into consideration in the choice of meeting venue. With a long history, Suzhou is known world-wide for the saying “just like there is paradise in heaven, there are Suzhou and Hangzhou on earth”.

Polar experts admiring the beauty of Suzhou

When the Assembly finished, the Chinese and Nordic polar experts took time to visit a few tourist sites at the town of Dongshan, and took a group photo in front of the Sculptured Mansion. Moreover, Prof. Zhang noted that the five Nordic states are the most advanced states in education. China from ancient times has great respect for education, especially evident at the town of Dongshan which is also named the “Town of talents”. Therefore, the city of Suzhou leaves a good impression for the Nordic experts, who marvel at the Chinese traditional folk sculpture arts within the Sculptured Mansion.


China-Nordic Arctic Research Center opens in Shanghai

Major Nordic research institutions team up with Polar Research Institute of China to promote sustainable development of the Arctic

By Thomas Nilssen - 12th December 2013 - Published at the website of Barents Observer

Six institutes from Norway, Finland, Iceland, Denmark and Sweden were present in Shanghai this week for the official inauguration of the new center. Climate change, Arctic economic development and shipping are key topics for the joint research between the Nordic institutions and the Chinese member institutes

“With academic exchange and common research platform, the new center is dedicated to promote the Arctic and its impact on global awareness, promotion of sustainable development in a global sense,” reads the promote posted on the portal of Polar Research Institute of China.

Potential economic benefits of cross-Arctic shipping between China and Europe are one major interest Beijing sees as the Arctic ice-cap melts away. Climate change research is another. A Chinese research station is already established in Ny-ólesund on the Norwegian archipelago of Svalbard. Since 1985, Beijing initiated fve Arctic and 28 Antarctic expeditions. Most known in the Barents Region is last year’s expedition through the Barents Sea and upon return from Iceland straight cross the top of the Arctic with the ice-breaker Snow Dragon.

“Cooperation between the Barents Region and non-Arctic states will grow as Arctic waterways open”, China’s Ambassador to Norway told at a conference in the Norwegian town of Kirkenes on the coast to the Barents Sea earlier this year.

He added that the Barents Sea gradually is turning into an international area both in terms of geography and economy.

China has for years been knocking on the door to join Arctic Council and was accepted as observer country in May this year.

According to The Diplomat, China is spending around $60 million annually on polar research and plan to increase the Arctic research staff by a factor of five to 1,000. Polar Research Institute of China is located in Shanghai, also the location of the new Nordic-China Arctic Research Center.

The Nordic Member institutes at the center are Fridtjof Nansen Institute (Norway), Norwegian Polar Institute, Arctic Center in Rovaniemi (Finland), Swedish Polar Research Secretariat, Icelandic Center for Research and the Nordic Institute of Asian Studies in Denmark. The Chinese member institutions are Center for Polar and Oceanic Studies at the Tongji University, Research Institute of Polar Law and Politics at the Ocean University of China, Shanghai Institutes of International Studies and the Strategic Studies Division at the Polar Research Institute of China.

Inauguration Ceremony


Speech by Deputy Director-General JIA Guide in the Inaugural Ceremony of CNARC

Shanghai, 10th December 2013

Deputy Director General Jia Guide

Distinguished Delegates,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Good Morning.

First, a few words about where I am from. I am from the Department of Treaty and Law, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of China. Delegates here may or may not know that three years ago in China we established an inter-agency coordinating mechanism on Arctic affairs. The Foreign Ministry, together with State Oceanic Administration is heading this coordinating mechanism, with the office located in the Department of Treaty and Law.

Today I am honored, on behalf of the Department of Treaty and Law, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, to extend our warmest congratulations on the inauguration of the China-Nordic Arctic Research Center (CNARC).

The idea of CNARC was initiated in the first Chinese-Nordic Arctic Cooperation Symposium in June this year and received positive responses from Chinese and Nordic institutes. In less than 6 months, the idea has been well developed and turned into reality as we just witnessed the launch of CNARC. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the State Oceanic Administration, the Polar Research Institute of China and other member institutes of CNARC for your hard work and high efficiency.

The establishment of CNARC is a proof and symbol of good cooperation in Arctic affairs between China and Nordic countries. At multilateral level, China has become a formal observer to the Arctic Council since May this year with the support from all Arctic States, including and especially from the five Nordic countries. Nordic countries rendered strong support to China from an early stage, which we will firmly bear in our minds.

At bilateral level, China has held dialogues and exchanges with all Nordic countries. Sino-Nordic pragmatic cooperation on the Arctic has been in the forefront of Arctic cooperation. For instance, Chinese Government and Icelandic Government signed a Framework Agreement on Arctic Cooperation in April 2012 when Premier Wen Jiabao visited Iceland, which is the very first agreement on Arctic Cooperation between China and Arctic States. Finland and China held bilateral dialogue as well as a symposium on Arctic cooperation in 2011, which enhanced mutual understanding and pragmatic cooperation. Denmark has, for a number of times, introduced its Arctic Strategy in China and expressed its warm welcome to invest in Greenland, Denmark. Sweden had actively played its role as Chair State of the Arctic Council to facilitate the achievement of consensus of admitting observers such as China into the Council. Norway has been an active host of Arctic-related multilateral meetings, such as Arctic Frontier meeting and Arctic Summit. All in all, Sino-Nordic cooperation in various areas such as scientific research, environment protection, icebreaker design as well as economic development is all well under way.

I would also like to take this opportunity to briefly share with you China’s views on Arctic cooperation. First, we think that cooperation is the mainstream in Arctic affairs. There is a strong and practical need to strengthen Arctic cooperation, not only among Arctic states, but also among Arctic and non-Arctic states. As we say, some of the Arctic issues are trans-regional, such as climate change and Arctic shipping, which involve the common interests of all states. Addressing trans-regional issues through joint endeavors will enable Arctic and non-Arctic states to view these issues from a wider perspective as well as send a more comprehensive message to the international community.

Second, cooperation with Arctic states is indispensable for China’s Arctic activities. Arctic states play significant and unique roles in Arctic affairs with an early start and strong capability in Arctic research. I am glad to say that more and more countries gradually recognize China as an important stakeholder in Arctic affairs, which is marked by the acceptance of China as a formal observer to the Arctic Council. Here I would like to reiterate that China’s participation in Arctic affairs is based on the recognition of Arctic States’ sovereignty, sovereign rights and jurisdiction in the Arctic. We are both willing and able to deeply participate in Arctic affairs and make contributions to the peace, stability and sustainable development of the Arctic. I have lead bilateral dialogues and exchanges with a number of Arctic states in recent years and I see both political willingness and strong potential in Arctic cooperation between both sides. Cooperation with Arctic states will remain to be the center of China’s Arctic activities, both at multilateral and bilateral levels. From the perspective of the Chinese government, we would like to keep this momentum of cooperation and create platforms to enhance mutually beneficial and win-win cooperation.

Third, the areas of Arctic cooperation are continuously expanding, creating enormous potential. I personally participated in Senior Arctic Officials’ Meeting of the Arctic Council held in Whitehorse, Canada the past October. It is my observation, a purely personal observation that the highlights of the Arctic have undergone significant changes, which is reflected in two aspects. First, the shifting of priority work of the Arctic Council from traditional areas of scientific research and environment protection to emerging areas such as Arctic shipping and resources exploitation. These two areas have been identified as the priority work of the Council under the Chairmanship of Canada. Second, the preparatory work of creating an Arctic Economic Council (AEC, previously called "Circumpolar Business Forum") to get the business circle and industries closely involved in Arctic development. A specific task force has been set up under the framework of the Arctic Council to facilitate the creation of the AEC and four meetings have been held so far. It is noted that key issues such as the relationship between the AEC and the Arctic Council, membership of the AEC are still under discussion and different views have been expressed. We regard it beneficial to the AEC to keep its inclusiveness and openness with wide participation. Such a trend of prioritizing Arctic economic development will have significant influence on areas of Arctic cooperation.

Distinguished Delegates, Ladies and Gentlemen
The establishment of CNARC marks a new beginning. While we join here to celebrate this occasion, it also places on us a solemn responsibility to fulfill the purposes and objectives of CNARC, i.e., to increase awareness, understanding and knowledge of the Arctic and its global impacts, to promote cooperation for sustainable development of the Nordic Arctic and coherent development of China in a global context.

With members consisting of ten top and influential think-tanks in the field of Arctic research from China and Nordic countries, I have every confidence that CNARC will play a key role in deepening cooperation in Arctic research between China and Nordic countries. Such exchange and academic cooperation will eventually enhance wider pragmatic cooperation in various other areas.

Distinguished Delegates, Ladies and Gentlemen
As you embark on your important discussions (I understand that this afternoon participants will leave for Suzhou), I would like to wish you a fruitful and successful meeting of the first Assembly of Member Institutes of CNARC. In closing, I also wish our friends from abroad a pleasant stay in China.

Thank you!


Coming event: The 2nd China-Nordic Arctic Cooperation Symposium

Proposal to RANNIS to the Assembly of Member Institutes of CNARC

The second China-Nordic Arctic Cooperation Symposium is an international and multi-disciplinary event expected to draw researchers, industry representatives, policy makers and community leaders to present, debate and discuss research findings and issues relating to growing Nordic-Arctic Asian cooperation. The Symposium is hosted by the Icelandic Center for Research (RANNIS) and jointly organized with the newly established China-Nordic Arctic Research Center in Shanghai and its member institutes.

Proposed theme for the Symposium: North Meets East

Topics to be presented and discussed may include the following:

  • Arctic Governance: What significance does the decision to accept five Asian countries, namely China, India, Singapore, South Korea and Japan, as permanent observers at the Arctic Council and in which ways might this contribute to sustainable development and human security at local, national and regional level in the Arctic region?
  • Global Economy - Regional Impacts: The regional economies of Nordic Arctic and Asian countries can be seen as complimentary in several ways, with cooperation possibilities in fields such as water, food and energy security, international trade and even indigenous rights in a global Arctic. Where are the main cooperation opportunities in research, responsible resource utilization and human development issues between societies and economies in these regions?
  • Maritime cooperation: The Arctic Ocean connects the Atlantic and Pacifc Oceans and there are various common subjects of interests that concern maritime cooperation between the Nordic Arctic and East Asia. This includes transportation (shipping, airborne and railway), natural resource exploration, production, utilization and management of living and nonliving resources, safety and security (Search and Rescue centers, training facilities for working in Arctic conditions) etc. What is the potential and possibly complex impact of the eventual opening of Arctic shipping routes on Nordic Arctic-Asian cooperation, in terms of economic development at different levels, political and social responses and local livelihoods in Arctic societies?
  • Tourism, culture & outreach: Arctic tourism is experiencing high growth and the sector is booming in many Nordic Arctic areas, with Asian tourists accounting for a substantial part of the surge. Tourism, as form of transforming international contact and cross-cultural social process can have great potential to increase a common understanding between the societies of the Nordic Arctic and the general public in Asian countries. What will be the role of tourism in shaping foreseeable changes in an increasingly globalized Arctic?

Location: University of Akureyri, Iceland
Date: 3-5th June (Tuesday to Thursday), Symposium 3-4th June, Excursion 5th June,6th June (Friday): 2nd Assembly of Member Institutes of China-Nordic Arctic Research Center (CNARC).
Number of Participants 70-90.

CNARC Nordic Participating Institutes

  • Arctic Center (Finland)
  • Fridtjof Nansen Institute (Norway)
  • Icelandic Center for Research - RANNIS (Organizer)
  • Nordic Institute of Asian Studies (Denmark)
  • Norwegian Polar Institute (Norway)
  • Swedish Polar Research Secretariat (Sweden)

CNARC Chinese Participating Institutes

  • China-Nordic Arctic Research Centre, Shanghai (Co-organizer)
  • Center for Polar and Oceanic Studies, Tongji University
  • Polar Research Institute of China
  • Research Institute of Polar Law and Politics, Ocean University of China
  • Shanghai Institute of International Studies

National Host Committee

  • Icelandic Center for Research - Rannis
  • Arctic Portal (Confirmed)
  • Arctic Services (TBD)
  • Icelandic Arctic Cooperation Network (Confirmed)
  • Stefansson Arctic Institute (Confirmed)
  • University of Akureyri (Confirmed)
  • Town of Akureyri (TBD)
  • The Arctic Chamber of Commerce (TBD)

Time Schedule

  • 15th of January 2014, Call for abstracts (250 - 400 words) published registration opens.
  • 1st of March 2014, Deadline for abstract submission.
  • 15th of March 2014, Acceptance of abstracts.

Selection of abstracts

A panel of three experts, one from RANNIS, one from PRIC and one from the Nordic Group of CNARC will review the abstracts and make a decision which ones to invite.


It is expected that participants in the symposium cover the costs related to travel and accommodation. RANNIS will share the costs concerning meals, meetings and an excursion during the symposium. Yet, there will be a registration fee for participants (20.000 ISK, 1.000 CNY, 125 EUR). Financial support will be sought from the Icelandic Chairmanship of the Nordic Council of Ministers and selected other potential sponsors. University of Akureyri will provide the conference venue.

Town of Akureyri

Akureyri is situated in north-east Iceland, in the longest fords in the country and is surrounded by mountains reaching 1000-1500 m. The Arctic Circle in only 60 km north of Akureyri but still the climate is mild, with summer temperatures up to 25°C and winter temperatures in average around 0°C.

Akureyri is the second largest urban area after the capital area of Reykjavík, with a population of about 18.000. Akureyri is the centre of trade and services in northern

Iceland. It is also a town of culture and education, building on a firm foundation. Akureyri is a popular tourist destination for short or long visits. The town offers a wide range of activities and interesting places e.g. notable museums, the world's most northerly botanic garden, one of Iceland's most popular swimming facilities, 18- hole golf course, the best skiing area in the country, good hiking trails and free city bus. Our guests can choose between varied accommodation and excellent range of restaurants, some of which specialize in local food. The town is also a good base for many of Iceland's most beautiful natural wonders as waterfalls, volcanic areas and canyons as well as exciting activities as river rafting, hiking, fishing, whale watching and horse riding.

University of Akureyri

The University of Akureyri (Háskólinn á Akureyri) is located in North Iceland and has served Akureyri and its rural surrounding since 1987. The University has built a reputation for academic excellence and good industrial relations. Located in the capital of North Iceland, Akureyri, the University has been instrumental in the areas economic growth and is central in the areas future planning as a knowledge-based society

The University of Akureyri prepares students for a wide range of opportunities in both the private and the public sectors. Education at the University covers specifc skills and scientifc methods as well as other more theoretical skills that will enable graduates to improve their qualifcations. Education and research are closely coordinated to achieve this, first and foremost by assigning them with equal importance in the daily work of the academic and scientific staff and whenever possible basing course work on research.

The University was founded in September 1987 with the establishment of faculties in health sciences and industrial management. The University is divided into three Schools; School of Business and Science, School of Humanities and Social Sciences and School of Health Sciences. The number of students is around 1600 and members of staff are around 180.