Ten highlights and being properly dressed for the occasion

Dinosaur Dance

Ten highlights and being properly dressed for the occasion

RealMoro, our annual celebration of science and technology at the University of Oslo took place yesterday. Among many other things, I had the pleasure of dancing with a dinosaur. You can read, at least a version of my speech here!

Around 2,000 employees and more than 6,000 students work with or study science and technology at the University of Oslo (UiO). In number of people we are about the same size of an average (to small) Norwegian city. Most cities have events where they celebrate themselves. This is also the case for us. Realists and technologists meet at RealMoro every year. Here is my speech at RealMoro this year.


There are many things I could mention from the last 12 months. Here are 10 selected highlights:

Number one – the grand slam. The Centre of Excellence-contest at The Research Council of Norway earlier this year gave us 5 out of 10 new centres in Norway. We are hosting two of these five new centres. Congratulations to all the people involved. I know that there is a lot of hard work behind this success.

Number two – the ultimate symbiosis. With frontrunners investigating and developing the link between research and education over many years, the  faculty got its first centre of excellent education this year, namely the Centre for Computing in Science Education. There are many good reasons for being extremely proud of this achievement!

Number three – the education revolution. Our new study programs are up and running after many years with hard work – very hard work from many people!. In particular I will mention our administration and the program seminars for new students created and developed by the FORVEI team. More than 1000 students attended this year. WOW!

Number four – historical moment. The faculty for mathematics and natural sciences at the University of Oslo has Norways most popular education program. Quite right, but a bit shocking! Make my day – the front page of DN – Dagens næringsliv! Congratulation to the Department of informatics.

Number five – from 8 to 9 department. The Department for technology systems – ITS at Kjeller, formerly know as UNIK, is now a part of the faculty. Very welcome to you!

Number six – from kindergarten to PhD level. The Norwegian Government has decided that all education centres working with kindergartens and primary schools in Norway shall be organized under universities. The Norwegian Centre for Science Education – Naturfagsenteret – will be a part of the faculty from January 1. 2018. Very welcome to you as well.

Number seven – no one mentioned, no one forgotten. Congratulations to all researchers and lectures at the faculty that over the last year have received prizes and other awards for their scientific achievements, for their innovation activities, for their performances as teachers, and for their brilliant science communication efforts.

Number eight – our students are our gold. Thanks to our more than 6000 students for creating a good, no – the world´s best, student environment. Blindern is known as a nice and inclusive place for all, so thanks to all the active students in various committees and student association.

Number nine – the science and technology family. The science and technology family at UiO is more than the faculty. I have already mentioned Naturfagsenteret that becomes a part of us from january 2018, However, I have not forgotten our brilliant science library – the world´s, by far, best science library, and our proud diamond at Tøyen – the Natural History Museum surrounded by the beautiful Botanical Garden.

Number ten – my new boss is a chemist. Congratulation to Svein Stølen (former dean of research at the faculty) and his crew as winners of the rector´s election this spring. Wow - good luck to Svein! The two oldies in the deans group, Solveig and me, also wish our two new deans, Kristin and Finn-Eirik, very welcome to the team!

I ended my speech with the (very famous) penguin greeting. It must be seen, however I can disclose three things about the greeting, i) the click of the heals, ii) the move of the wings (or the flaps), and iii) the final position of the upper body and head. Everything has to come out in one perfect motion!   ..… and you must of course be properly dressed!


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