Teaching at the Edinborg Culture Centre

The University Centre of the Westfjords and Edinborg Culture Centre in Ísafjörður have come to an agreement about UW renting out the main hall of the culture centre for teaching this coming autumn. This is a response on behalf of UW to the large number of students enrolled in the two masters programs this year, a total number of 43. With this number of students, the facilities at the UW are not large enough for joint core courses of the two programs, as well as popular elective courses.

During the first years of the University Centre, before the masters’ programs were launched, there were discussions about building a large lecture hall for the University Centre and even to build a large university building. Despite these ambitions plans, the UW policy has consistently been to attract students to the area before making huge financial commitments. This policy has for the most part paid off. With the new master’s program in Coastal Communities and Regional Development the need for a large lecture hall is evident. It is therefore very convenient to be able to rent the hall in a building that is located within 5 minutes’ walk from UW, rather than building it from scratch.

With this change it can be said that the UW campus has now expanded into the downtown area of Ísafjörður, like what is often the case in old university towns on the continent.  

The orientation days were held at Edinborg Culture Centre at the beginning of the school year late in August.
The orientation days were held at Edinborg Culture Centre at the beginning of the school year late in August.

Prime minister visits UW

Prime Minister Katrín Jakobsdóttir visited the University Centre earlier today. Katrín met with staff members and also managed to make time for a short visit to the classroom of our ongoing Icelandic Course. Peter Weiss, director of UW, gave the minister a tour of the Vestrahús building, visiting the multiple research and development institutions that are housed under the same roof as the University Centre.

Peter Weiss and Katrín Jakobsdóttir.
Peter Weiss and Katrín Jakobsdóttir.
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Icelandic Courses began this week

On Tuesday morning teaching began on our three-week Icelandic Course for Beginners (A1-A2). The course is taught the second year in a row by Eiríkur Sturla Ólafsson, an experienced instructor of Icelandic as a second language.

The students on the three week course in front of the University Centre just before embarking on the
The students on the three week course in front of the University Centre just before embarking on the "city walk".
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Convocation Celebrating Candidates Graduation

As tradition has it the University Centre of the Westfjords held its annual convocation to celebrate the graduation of our master’s students on Iceland’s National Day, June 17th at Hrafnseyri in Arnarfjörður. This year was a special one since the first candidates from the Coastal Communities and Regional Development master’s program graduated.

Graduates and extended alumni cohort along with the University of Akureyri rector and UW staff.
Graduates and extended alumni cohort along with the University of Akureyri rector and UW staff.
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Arctic Marine Litter Education Workshop

The University Centre of the Westfjords has had good representation at a two-day online workshop which was hosted by the UArctic Thematic Network on Marine Plastics. The purpose of the workshop was to explore the different educational needs and research gaps related to Arctic Marine Litter, and how to better coordinate with Arctic Council activities.

Arctic marine litter was the subject of a two-day online workshop hosted by the UArctic Thematic Network on Marine Plastics.
Arctic marine litter was the subject of a two-day online workshop hosted by the UArctic Thematic Network on Marine Plastics.
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Visiting Researchers from the Icelandic Tourism Research Centre

This week we had the pleasure to welcome two visiting researchers from the Icelandic Tourism Research Centre in Akureyri. Both of which are working on research projects that have to do with Ísafjörður and the Westfjords. Ása Marta Sveinsdóttir is working on a research project on cruise ship tourism in arctic communities and Alina Bavykina is working on a master’s thesis on Aldrei fór ég suður music festival.

Ása Marta Sveinsdóttir (left) and Alina Bavykina (right) are visiting the University Centre to conduct research on on cruise tourism in arctic communities and the music festival Aldrei fór ég suður.
Ása Marta Sveinsdóttir (left) and Alina Bavykina (right) are visiting the University Centre to conduct research on on cruise tourism in arctic communities and the music festival Aldrei fór ég suður.

Alumni publication: Social-ecological resilience and community-based tourism

We are happy to share our student’s achievements after they graduate. Recent alumna Kristin Weis has published the results of her master’s thesis in Coastal and Marine Management on Social-ecological resilience and community-based tourism in the commonwealth of Dominica.

Recent alumna Kristin Weis has published the results of her master’s thesis in Coastal and Marine Management on Social-ecological resilience and community-based tourism in the commonwealth of Dominica. The paper appears in peer reviewed journal Tourism Geographies.
Recent alumna Kristin Weis has published the results of her master’s thesis in Coastal and Marine Management on Social-ecological resilience and community-based tourism in the commonwealth of Dominica. The paper appears in peer reviewed journal Tourism Geographies.
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Funding for the project Fostering Innovation in Rural Iceland

We are happy to share some very good news from the Icelandic Research Fund (Rannís). The University Centre and startup company East of Moon have been awarded a grant for a two-year project titled “Fostering Innovation in Rural Iceland.” This is also very good news for our current and prospective Coastal Communities and Regional Development students, since master’s thesis research projects can get funded from the project.

Remote and rural communities in Iceland are more at risk of having jobs eliminated due to the 4th industrial revolution compared to the capital area. At the same time, rural innovation ecosystems are less active according to available measures. The project examines how innovation ecosystems can be fostered in rural areas that leads to a more inclusive and resilient society and develops practical and adaptable ways to boost innovation there.

Arnar Sigurðsson (left) and Matthias Kokorsch (right) are the principal investigators for the project Fostering Innovation in Rural Iceland.
Arnar Sigurðsson (left) and Matthias Kokorsch (right) are the principal investigators for the project Fostering Innovation in Rural Iceland.

Course Schedule for 2021-2022 – Introducing Thematic Blocks

The new course schedule for 2021-2022 for our two Coastal Studies masters programs is now available! The new schedule features some exciting novelties that will both benefit full time students and short-term students such as exchange and visiting students.

Guest Students from the AUI participated in Maritime Anthropology course

Last week we welcomed four guest students from the new Nordic master’s program in Environmental Changes at Higher Latitudes, partly taught at Agricultural University of Iceland.

The four students on their way back from Ísafjörður last weekend. From the left: Alfredo Escanciano Gómez, Guðrún Guðjónsdóttir, María Rún Þrándardóttir and Eyrún Gyða Gunnlaugsdóttir. Photo: Isabel C. Barrio.
The four students on their way back from Ísafjörður last weekend. From the left: Alfredo Escanciano Gómez, Guðrún Guðjónsdóttir, María Rún Þrándardóttir and Eyrún Gyða Gunnlaugsdóttir. Photo: Isabel C. Barrio.
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