Iceland's Environment and Natural Resources

CMM28 Elective 3 ECTS
Tímabil W35-36 24.08.15 - 04.09.15
Instructor Dagný Arnarsdóttir and Jamie Alley


 [The module aims at setting the context for studying about environment and natural resources in Iceland, both regarding land and sea.]

As a developed, resource rich, remote and sparsely populated island in the N-Atlantic Ocean, Iceland has distinct aspects. Those are, among others, the country’s diverse geology and homogenous demography, which are not easily comparable to neighbouring nations. The module aims to explore Iceland’s international image concerning environment and natural resources; how the country’s nature may be linked to the self-image of the modern Icelander; nature as a source of nationalism; and how this has manifested in recent debates in the media regarding utilization vs. conservation of renewable energy resources.

Learning outcomes

At the end of the course, students will be able to:

  • discuss and reflect upon selected topics provided in class and study materials.


Individual assignment. Journal, based on 1) required readings and 2) own reflections after each day of class. At least 500 words per day (applies to Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday). A journal question will be provided at the end of each day. Citations (in text) and references at the end are required, APA style. Due Friday, August 29, at 9am. (More detailed information will be provided in class.)

Attendance and participation in class discussions.

Grading is P=pass or F=fail


Dagný Arnarsdóttir is the program director of the Coastal and Marine Management program. She holds a master's degree from the Environment and Natural Resources (ENR) program at the University of Iceland (UI). In her master's thesis, Dagný studied the Corporate Social Responsibility discourse in Iceland and based her methodology on similar researches on climate change discourses in neighboring countries. Dagný has been the program director of the CMM masters program at the University Centre of the Westfjords since December 2009.

Guest lecturer

Further reading

Readings and further readings posted on class website.