The Centre for Development and the Environment (SUM), University of Oslo
SUM is an international research institution at the University of Oslo* which promotes scholarly work on the challenges and dilemmas posed by sustainable future. The Center was established in 1990 in response to the report of the Brundtland Commission: Our Common Future. It is currently one of the few institutions in Norway advancing synergic, interdisciplinary research on development and the environment and combining insights from the social, humanist and natural sciences. SUM is also an academic home of the founder of Deep Ecology, professor Arne Næss, and the coordinating unit for the network for the Norwegian Latin American Research (NorLARNet).In addition, SUM highlights research in selected thematic areas, such as Natural Resource Management and Business and Governance.
SUM's current research is organized into 5 broad areas;
1) Consumption, Energy and Social Change;
2) Culture, Ethics and Sustainability;
3) Global and Regional Governance for Sustainable Development;
4) Poverty and Development;
5) ProSus – Programme for Research and Documentation for a Sustainable Society
Although SUM is primarily a research institution, it offers courses at the Bachelor, MA and PhD levels, as well as an International Master in Culture, Environment and Sustainability. The Center has the status of Research School which specializes in educating scholars interested in interdisciplinary perspectives on development and the environment.
SUM is presently a coordinating center of several prestigious international projects - financed by the Norwegian and the European Research Councils, The Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and NORAD. These include, among others, Creative Responses to Sustainability in the context of climate shift (CERES 21), Poverty and Legal Empowerment , Land Use Policies and Sustainable Development in Developing Countries (LUPIS), and Explaining Different Immunization Coverage in Developing Countries.
*The University of Oslo is Norway’s largest and oldest institution of higher education. It was founded in 1811 when Norway was still under Danish rule. Today the University of Oslo has approximately 30,000 students and 4,600 employees, and - in spite of its short history - it boasts four Nobel Prize winners: Ragnar Frisch (economics, 1969), Odd Hassel (chemistry, 1969), Ivar Giæver (physics ,1973) , and Trygve Haavelmo (economics, 1989).