Previous winners of the Award for Excellence in Communication of Science

The Research Council’s Award for Excellence in Communication of Science is given annually to a researcher who has demonstrated an outstanding skill for dynamic and innovative high-quality science communication from his or her own research field. The award may be granted for all types of dissemination through all types of media, and for activities that have taken place over time or as a specific effort. The jury focuses in particular on the creativity and inventiveness of the nominees. The communication activities must be directed toward the general public.

2018: Bjørn Samset, CICERO Center for International Climate and Environmental Research. Dr Samset, a physicist and climate scientist, is one of Norway’s leading disseminators of climate research and physics. He excels in explaining complicated issues and informing the ongoing public debate through the media, the jury wrote in its statement. According to the jury, Dr Samset is a clear, courageous voice and can speak with conviction in the difficult discourse where research meets politics.

2017: Henrik Svensen, University of Oslo Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences, Department of Geosciences. Henrik Svensen, a researcher in the field of volcanism and past crisis events, is one of Norway’s foremost communicators not only of his own research but of early geological research in general, wrote the jury in its statement. According to the jury, Dr Svensen is a shining example for others, as his science communication is infused with wide-ranging scientific knowledge and a strong sense of social engagement. He exhibits the ability to popularise science and make use of different media and forms of communication.

2016: Ingun Grimstad Klepp, ethnologist at Consumption Research Norway (SIFO), Oslo and Akershus University College – for her enthusiastic communication on topics such as outdoor recreation, clothing and household management, the environment, and clothing habits. Dr Grimstad Klepp is involved in the political discourse on the growth of consumerism and environmental impacts. In her lectures, books and exhibits she combines perspectives from the natural and social sciences and cultural studies. She is highly skilled at tailoring her message to various channels and target groups and has made many television appearances on Norwegian news/consumer/talk shows.

2015: Legal expert and researcher Anine Kierulf, Norwegian Centre for Human Rights at the University of Oslo – for her ability to explain complex problems simply, clearly and concisely and for her important, credible voice in the public debate on issues involving human rights and freedom of expression. The jury described Dr Kierulf as courageous and succinct, stating that she maintains high academic standards while demonstrating the ability to communicate far beyond the confines of her field. With her involvement in social issues, the winner reaches out to many target groups.

2014: Professor Frank Aarebrot, University of Bergen – for his fearless, clear and forthright communication, great dedication and impressive impact. Professor Aarebrot managed to generate interest and expand awareness for his own field and for societal issues in general.

2013: Professor Jorunn Sundgot-Borgen, Norwegian School of Sport Sciences Department of Sports Medicine – for her many years as an outstanding researcher and highly active communicator. She helped to bring clearer, better science communication to the field of sports, women’s health and nutrition – a challenging area once considered off-limits.

2012: Professor Nils Christian Stenseth, University of Oslo Department of Biosciences – for his role as a particularly active science communicator throughout his entire research career, and for his deliberate use of a wide array of communication channels. He is able to explain complex problems in a straightforward, clear and concise manner, and is a socially involved communicator able to captivate an audience that extends far beyond the reaches of his own field.

2011: Professor Kalle Moene, University of Oslo Department of Economics – for his skill at explaining complex economic issues in terms understandable to the general public. Over many years his science communication has remained relevant and succinct, and he maintains a high scientific standard while still communicating beyond the reaches of his own field.

2010: The editors of the website – for outstanding dissemination of science and knowledge through an editorial product that takes a sound, critical approach, and for having inspired Norwegian researchers and the research community to expand and improve the communication of their own results.

2009: Palaeontologist Jørn Hurum, University of Oslo Natural History Museum – for his years of communicating science to a wide audience, reaching new and broad-based target groups. His academic delight and enthusiasm are infectious, and his scientific reputation and presence have brought public attention to and interest in science and knowledge.

2008: Ole Didrik Lærum, Professor of Medicine at the Gade Institute, University of Bergen – for his active, creative communication of high quality from his own field. He has deliberately used communication as an integral part his research activities, and over many years he has shown initiative in drawing attention to his field as well as to the important role of science in Norwegian society at large.

2007: Professor Egil Lillestøl of the University of Bergen Department of Physics and Technology – for his work to popularise fundamental physics to school pupils and the general public, as part of a high-quality public-oriented dissemination activity.

2006: Wenche Blomberg, researcher at the University of Oslo Department of Criminology and Sociology of Law – for her powerful portrayal of the history of psychiatry.

2005: Professor Terje Tvedt, University of Bergen Centre for Development Studies – in recognition of his long-term, original and professional communication from an extremely vital field of knowledge: Earth’s water resources.

2004: Marine researcher and expedition leader Odd Aksel Bergstad, MAR-ECO project. Dr Bergstad had the main responsibility for communication activities from the international MAR-ECO marine study. In particular, it was the diversity and professionalism of the dissemination activities that greatly impressed the jury.

2003: Professor Bente Træen of the University of Tromsø Department of Psychology – for her outstanding communication and for demonstrating great understanding of the challenges and requirements related to science communication. Her communication activities are largely characterised by their wide scope and diversity and her ability to connect with the public.

2002: Professor Thomas Hylland Eriksen of the University of Oslo, Department of Social Anthropology – for being an exemplary, exceptionally active communicator of his field and knowledge, and for demonstrating that even complex scientific content can be communicated understandably using clear language.

2001: Associate Professor Michael Baziljevich of the University of Oslo, Department of Physics – for his work with the Astrofestival and his dedication, creativity and long-term efforts towards communicating research and natural science.

2000: NRK P2’s popular science radio programme Verdt å vite (Worth Knowing) – for its uncompromising investigative reporting and for creating a dynamic and enthusiastic radio forum for Norwegian and international research.