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Norwegian universities opening up to the world June 19, 2009

Posted by Sverre in : Academic matters, Norwegian politics , trackback

The Norwegian Ministry of Education and Research today announced its appointment of new external board members for the university boards of seven universities and academic colleges in Norway. In the Norwegian academic system, these boards are the supreme authority on matters both administrative and academic in universities and colleges. Traditionally these positions have been held solely by Norwegian nationals, but this trend has been broken today. Among the new members appointed by Minister of Higher Education and Research, Tora Aasland, Danish and Swedish academics were placed in 6 out of 7 boards.

I see this as an extremely positive development for higher education and research in Norway. I am myself a former university board member, and believe these institutions can benefit immensely from some external views as part of their governance. With the close language culture ties between the Scandinavian countries, it seems very unlikely that it should have any ill effects on the effectiveness of governance at all.

On behalf of my own university, NTNU, I welcome the director of the Swedish elite institution Karolinska Institutet, Mrs. Karin Röding as new board member.

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