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University collaboration to further Viking research

Issued 6 March 2012
University collaboration to further Viking research

Centre for Nordic Studies student at Maeshowe runes



The University of the Highlands and Islands has been asked to help some of the UK's most prestigious Universities to expand our knowledge of Viking culture.

Academics from UHI's Centre for Nordic Studies will be working with staff from Oxford, Cambridge and Nottingham Universities to develop students and early career researchers' knowledge of the subject and enhance their investigation skills.

The collaborative project will give 37 Old Norse-Icelandic and Viking studies students and researchers the opportunity to take part in inter-disciplinary workshops led by key academics and heritage sector professionals. The sessions will explore a range of subjects, including literature, coinage, archaeology and museum skills, which are rarely all taught in single university departments.

Funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council, the skills development programme will also enable participants to experience Viking settlements first-hand in a seven-day field trip to Orkney.

The project will conclude with a conference and mobile exhibition where the students and researchers will share their knowledge with the public.

Speaking about the collaboration, Dr Heather O'Donoghue, reader in Old Norse at Oxford University and project leader, said: "This is a wonderful opportunity to bring together students, academics and heritage professionals from all over the UK to learn from each other about various aspects of Viking culture. We are thrilled to be collaborating with UHI's Centre for Nordic Studies, privileged to be sharing their expertise and enormously grateful for their enthusiastic support in this important project."

Dr Donna Heddle, director of the Orkney-based Centre for Nordic Studies, said: "We were delighted to be asked to join this consortium. Its great recognition for the University and for the Centre for Nordic Studies' growing international reputation in Viking studies. Experts coming together to pass on their knowledge to students in the beautiful environments of Oxford and Kirkwall - what could be better?"

James Fraser, University of the Highlands and Islands principal and vice-chancellor, added: "Being invited to take part in such a prestigious collaboration is a testament to the hard work and expertise of the Centre for Nordic Studies staff. I am delighted that the University of the Highlands and Islands will be involved in this innovative project and look forward to hearing how it progresses."




Media contact
Susan Szymborski
Communications officer
d: 01463 279222
e: susan.szymborski@uhi.ac.uk