Centre for Advanced Study

at the Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters


  • Robert Macfarlane in Greenland summer 2016. Photo: Helen Spenceley

    How can we better articulate the Anthropocene?

    – We are Generation Anthropocene, Robert Macfarlane says, but argues that our need for change seems to greatly exceed our capacity to exert it.

  • Bryan Tilt held a seminar during lunch for all the scholars at CAS Oslo.

    Air pollution: ‘I haven’t seen the stars for years’

    Our second lunch seminar this semester was held by Bryan Tilt, who shared his research on the different perceptions of air pollution in rural and urban areas in China: – There is little research on whether one needs to have reached a certain economic level in order to worry about environmental issues.

  • The art festival Komafest invited international artists to decorate houses in Vardø, north Norway, in 2012, to highlight depopulation problems. Saphinaz-Amal Naguib

    Vardø’s rich street art scene: will the city become an ecomuseum?

    In our first lunch seminar this spring, Saphinaz-Amal Naguib brought us to Norway’s most north-eastern city near the border to Russia, Vardø, and introduced us to a rich street art scene that demonstrates the large-scale depopulation of the arctic city.

  • Hein B. Bjerck shared his reflections on the scorched things that survived the fire in his eighty-five year old uncle’s home in 2013. Photo: Hein B. Bjerck

    Charred Memories – Ephemeral survivors in my uncle’s burnt home

    – Cognitive memories of things in a home cannot be inherited, because they do not reside in the things themselves, but in the relation between things and personal mindscapes, Hein Bjerck says.

  • View of Yinchuan city (Ningxia province, China) during sand storm. December 7 dr. Susanne Stein will visit CAS and give the seminar From Desertification Alarm to ‘Health Killer’: Shifting Interpretations of Dust Storms in Contemporary China

    Dust storms is a health killer, but disappeared from the public debate

    Throughout time sand and dust storms have been a topic in Chinese historical records. Although they are widely understood as a “health killer” today, they have almost disappeared from public debate, scholar argues.

  • – Barnebarnet mitt har vokst opp med en bestemor som er matematiker, og tror matte er et typisk kvinneyrke. Men det er jo ikke det, sier professor Berit Sensønes.

    – Det er vanskeligere for kvinner å komme seg opp og fram i matematikken

    Professor Berit Stensønes gir publiseringskrav og kvotering mye av skylda.

  • Professor Zhaohui Liu interviews rural-to-rural migrant citizens about air pollution. The scholars in the Airborne project at CAS find that few are aware of the significant health impact that is the result of household-produced air pollution, which is especially significant among the poorer and rural population. Copy right: Airborne. Photo: Annica Thomsson

    Air pollution in China: Poor people likely to be worst off

    CAS researchers expect that the rural population and poor migrants in cities will be the hardest hit when it comes to air pollution exposure. Professor Mette Halskov Hansen hopes that the CAS project she leads can help raise awareness and promote debate.

  • A recently abandoned apartment house in Nikel, Kola Peninsula. How does living with this ruining Soviet legacy affect the inhabitants, their prospects for the future, and how they remember the past, Bjørnar Olsen and his CAS research group asks photo: Bjørnar Olsen

    Life among Soviet ruins: – the past is still present

    Most people in Northwestern Russia and on the Kola Peninsula live in apartment blocks constructed during the time of Stalin, Khrushchev, and Brezhnev; many of these apartments are in a serious state of decay.

  • Blog

    Room for interdisciplinary engagement

    The leaves on the magnificent trees outside our building here in Oslo have turned yellow and red—the tell-tale sign that the academic year is underway.

  • Savannah Georgia, pebblestones, Liverpoool, ballast

    Ballast: Loads with history

    Ballast, the material used to stabilize ships, is the object of study for archaeologist and CAS Fellow professor Burström. He understands ballast as a “Gigantic relocation of material”.