White paper on research:
Global challenges high on the agenda
Players in the Norwegian research community have been sent a clear message: Norway has a major task ahead of it in helping to solve the challenges presented by globalisation. Internationalisation of research is highlighted as a main priority of Norwegian research policy.
"The new white paper on research places global perspectives high on the agenda and sets out how the Norwegian research community must contribute to tackling the tremendous global problems facing humanity," states Jesper Simonsen, Director of the Research Council's Department for Global Issues.
Cooperation with developing countries
The white paper names five thematic priority areas - climate, energy, the environment, aquaculture and food security - in which Norwegian research must help to solve social challenges, not just in Norway, but globally.
"These areas are closely connected to our role as global partner and our collaboration with a number of developing countries. The white paper asserts that it is impossible to combat global climate and environmental problems without extensive international cooperation and the active participation on an equal footing of developing countries," says Simonsen. "It is vital that we, for example, view climate and energy research in the context of poverty research to a greater extent than we have done previously. Such challenges cannot be solved independently of one another," he continues.
World closer to Norway - Norway closer to the world
The Research Council has carried out its own globalisation project with a focus on the impact of globalisation on Norwegian society.
"Global changes are affecting Norway more dramatically and more quickly than before," says Simonsen, citing economic growth in China and India as an example.
"The development of these countries affects oil prices, which in turn makes it more pressing to discuss oil exploration in the Barents Sea and look at the High North with new eyes," he explains.
The globalisation project, which has comprised three workshops and a large-scale conference, has aimed to raise awareness of the significance of globalisation for a range of areas such as energy and climate, migration and food security. The overall objective has been to identify Norway's knowledge needs in a 10-15-year perspective.
Implementation through Research Council activities
"The next stage is to address the thematic priorities set out in the white paper on research and the knowledge needs identified in these areas through programmes at the Research Council," says Simonsen. "We are considering establishing a separate programme for enhancing understanding of global processes. But it is just as important to view all our other activities in the context of huge global changes and to develop procedures for incorporating these issues every time we plan a new programme."
"The white paper has assigned us a clear-cut task: to take globalisation and global challenges even more seriously in the further development of Norwegian research," he concludes.
- Last updated: