Linguistic and cultural competence is essential to the establishment and maintenance of contact across borders. English may still be the main common vehicle of communication between Norwegians and Japanese, but during the last 20 years, the number of Norwegians who have chosen to learn Japanese has increased immensely. As a consequence, a large group of Japanese proficient Norwegians has emerged. These language learning processes are time-consuming, and also involve a great amount of cultural learning of great value.
In Norway, Japanese language and culture is taught at four separate institutions of higher education: University of Oslo, University of Bergen, Norwegian University of Science and Technology and Norwegian School of Economics. The academic staffs are involved in a wide range of Japan-related research, mainly in the humanities and social sciences. Among the research areas we find:
- Japanese linguistics, language teaching and intercultural communication
- Japanese politics, history and religion
- Japanese literature, film and popular culture
While Norwegian is a rather minor language globally speaking, increased student mobility has contributed to a growth in the number of Japanese who embark on learning Norwegian. In Japan, the Nordic Department at Tokai University offers Norwegian language and culture as a specialization. Several other institutions have academic staff with Norwegian society as their main area of expertise, and various kinds of research collaborations exist.
Harry Solvang, PhD, of the University of Bergen, has compiled the first ever Norwegian-language guide to modern Japanese grammar. The work is comprehensive, designed for both beginner/intermediate students and those at a higher level. The two volumes are available from Fagbokforlaget
From FY2013, under the framework of its bilateral program, the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) includes a new scheme called Open Partnership Joint Research Projects/Seminars. This scheme gives all researchers around the world an opportunity to conduct bilateral joint research projects or seminars in any academic field with funded Japanese colleagues. The scheme supports(…)
Norwegian brand Cathrine Hammel is represented in the international section of rooms this September. The fashion tradeshow, held in Yoyogi National Stadium, Tokyo, features approximately 550 brands from Japan and the rest of the world, and expects an estimated 18 000 visitors during the course of three days. Cathrine Hammel also collaborates with Fuglen Tokyo in promoting the Norwegian(…)