Nordic Bridge

Empowering Connections: Making Academia-Society Collaboration Accessible

What is it: Nordic Bridge will be an online platform where public and private entities can present specific problems or general cases where they seek the insight and expertise of academia. New research calls, project partnerships, and new initiatives from the academia will be published to seek interest from public and private sectors. Portal will have it's own newsletter to keep the portal members update. This portal will help people from universities, businesses, and local communities work together more easily. It's like a special online place where these groups can know each other and plan actions to solve problems and share ideas. We're doing this because we believe that when different kinds of smart and experienced people work together, they can come up with better solutions. This project makes it simple for everyone to join in, share what they know, and find ways to make things better for the future.

How will it work: Different actors can post a well-defined problem or a broader case on the portal, outlining areas where they need academic support. Students and professors can browse these postings to see if there's a challenge they're equipped to tackle. If something catches their eye, the portal administrators, and other portal partners, will help arrange discussions between the academic side and the problem posters. They help everyone involved to figure out the best way to address the challenge. It could be something a single student can take on, a project for a group of students, an internship opportunity, a thesis topic, or even the basis for a research application. We, from the University will host this portal and therefore we will also use this portal to post new research calls, project partnership invitations, and other initiatives from our side to seek interest from public and private sectors. Portal will have it's newsletter to keep all updated.

  • In 2023, the Interreg NPA program supported our one-year preparatory project to lay the groundwork for a larger initiative aimed at addressing the Northern Periphery and Arctic (NPA) region's challenges. This preparatory project phase focuses on three key objectives:

    • Stakeholder Engagement: Connecting with universities, businesses, public sectors, and communities to understand their challenges and opportunities.
    • Feasibility Assessment: Evaluating the viability of project ideas through advanced portals and stakeholder feedback.
    • Main Project Planning: Crafting a detailed plan for the main project that targets the NPA region's specific needs and opportunities.

    This preparatory work is crucial for ensuring the main project is well-informed and strategically positioned to tackle the challenges and to foster innovation and sustainable development. By engaging stakeholders, assessing feasibility, and planning meticulously, this initiative sets a solid foundation for successfully tackling the NPA region's unique challenges.

    The preparatory project total budget is 99.546 EUR. The total project funding is 57,789 EUR and ERDF support is 13,975 EUR.

  • The Nordic Bridge project aims to address the intertwined challenges and opportunities within the Northern Periphery and Arctic (NPA) communities. These challenges include a noticeable gap in practical engagement between academia and society, the untapped potential within both sectors, and the persistent problem of brain drain, where talent moves away in search of better opportunities.

    Nordic Bridge will serve as a catalyst for impactful and meaningful collaboration. By fostering interactions among academia, industry, and society, the portal seeks to deliver dual benefits: providing industries with innovative solutions and empowering academic institutions to undertake research that has direct implications for real-world challenges. This approach aims to establish a symbiotic relationship, where both academia and industry can thrive, leveraging each other's strengths to address the needs and challenges of the NPA region effectively.

  • In the preparatory project, we are six partners from three different NPA countries:

  • The main project aims to create a problem-solution matchmaking collaboration portal, designed to catalyze growth and foster collaboration across the Northern Periphery and Arctic (NPA) region. At the heart of this initiative is the development of a state-of-the-art digital platform. This platform will serve as a central hub, connecting stakeholders from various sectors across the NPA area, facilitating meaningful exchanges, and driving regional development through innovative collaborations.

    The portal creates a space where everyone can easily see how they might contribute. It's all about making connections and discovering how each person can use their skills and knowledge to make a real difference in the NPA region.

  • The Nordic Bridge initiative is designed to engage a diverse array of stakeholders, each playing a pivotal role in fostering innovation and collaboration across the Northern Periphery and Arctic (NPA) region. Here's how each stakeholder group benefits and contributes to the ecosystem:

    University Students are at the heart of the initiative, engaging directly with the portal to apply their knowledge to real-world problems. This participation opens doors to practical outcomes such as internships, employment opportunities, and involvement in cutting-edge research projects, providing a direct pathway from academic learning to professional application.

    Professors and Academia contribute their deep wells of knowledge and collaborate on research efforts through the portal. This engagement leads to tangible outcomes like joint research initiatives, the development of enhanced teaching materials, and opportunities for industry collaboration, enriching both the academic and practical landscapes.

    The Public Sector plays a crucial role by submitting challenges and engaging with innovative solutions through the portal. This interaction results in improved community services, the introduction of innovative solutions to public problems, and the establishment of stronger ties between academia and the public sector, enhancing the overall societal infrastructure.

    The Private Sector, particularly SMEs, gains access to innovative solutions and a platform for talent recruitment. This engagement is crucial for solving industry-specific problems, offering internships and job opportunities to students, and fostering collaborative R&D projects, driving forward the region's economic and innovative capacity.

    Society at Large benefits from the innovations and sustainable development projects that emerge from this collaborative platform. The outcomes include minimized brain drain, access to sustainable research, innovation, and development, access to new technologies, and sustainable economic growth, ensuring the long-term vitality and resilience of the NPA region.

    Through the Nordic Bridge initiative, these stakeholders not only find solutions to pressing challenges but also create a vibrant ecosystem of collaboration, innovation, and growth, making the NPA region a beacon of academic and practical excellence.

  • The Nordic Bridge project is set to generate a diverse array of outcomes and impacts, aimed at fostering collaboration and innovation across the NPA. The project's envisioned outputs include the facilitation of joint thesis projects, internships, and PhD research initiatives, alongside research and development applications. These academic and practical engagements are designed to open up potential employment opportunities for students, directly linking academic efforts with the job market.

    A significant aspect of the project is its regional focus, which presents a unique opportunity for cross-border academic cooperation among students and student groups from Sweden, Finland, Iceland, Ireland, Faroe Island, Greenland, and Norway. This collaborative environment is expected to encourage the tackling of regionally relevant issues, promoting a sense of unity and shared purpose across the NPA.

    By providing a platform where participants can propose innovative solutions, the project aims to drive growth initiatives, catalyzing the development of research and development projects that are not only academically significant but also have practical applications. The impact of these activities is anticipated to be substantial, contributing to the overall development of the region by leveraging its academic potential to address real-world challenges, thereby enhancing the quality of life and economic prosperity in the NPA Region.

Unlocking Collaborative Growth: How Stakeholders Benefit from the Nordic Bridge


Project partners

Coordinator: Nord University

Country: Norway

Partner: Hólar University

Country: Iceland

Partner: Lapland University of Applied Sciences

Country: Finland

Partner: NCE Aquaculture
Country: Norway

Partner: Bodø Næringsforum

Country: Norway

Partner: Northeast Iceland Development Fund

Country: Iceland

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