The Fisheries Science Center at the University of Akureyri was officially opened on Thursday 16 April 2009, when a contract was signed between UNAK and the Ministry of Fisheries and Agriculture. The center was established to support the policy of the University of Akureyri (UNAK) to strengthen ties between the industry and the university; strengthen mutual relations and research and the acquisition and dissemination of knowledge within the fishing industry.
The center also aims to strengthen the leadership of UNAK in education and research on the fisheries sector with the promotion of applied research, projects and training related to fisheries. This means, among other things, to enhance cooperation with the sector, to improve the public image of fisheries and promote the education at UNAK.
The Center is an institution within the university but obtains its funding independently. The center has one full-time job equivalent, which is increased through research grants and teaching within the university. Other employees are M.Sc. students or researchers funded by independent projects.
The Fisheries Science Center seeks to achieve their goals by:
- Gathering and disseminating information on fisheries
- Being responsible for organizing research projects and implement them
- Promoting innovation and support entrepreneurial activities in the fisheries sector
- Promoting cooperation with domestic and foreign research institutes, and other parties on any matter concerning fisheries
- Organizing and participating in conferences, discussion meetings, seminars, lectures and other educational activities
- Connecting students at UNAK with projects in cooperation with companies
- Providing services research in its own name
- Collecting information on fisheries in the database which is useful in research
- Participate in the publications and the collection of books, periodicals and other materials on fisheries
Main Arctic Projects
Amongst projects worked at the center are:
• Managing the Icelandic fisheries portal, www.fisheries.is. The portal is a gateway to information on the marine ecosystem around Iceland and on Icelandic fisheries.
• Manage and assist in MSc projects related to fisheries at UNAK
• Develop and strengthen the BSc program in fisheries sciences at UNAK
Vistey.is is a visual information gateway about life underwater in the Arctic. Vistey is for the Eyjafjörður area in Northern Iceland. The unique marine life is put on display with detailed text and stunning photographs below water. In the abyss lies one of the wonders of Iceland, the geothermal cones.
The Fisheries Sciences Center aims to participate in strengthening the research focus of UNAK on rural areas and issues regarding sustainable development in northern areas.
Nord Marine, is a professional network dealing with coastal and marine environmental issues of the Arctic. SHA is a leading partner in the network and it's main task is now to lead collaborative northern universities with fisheries related studies. The first meeting for this project was held in Tromsø, Norway in October 2012.
The meeting was attended by representatives from the University of Tromsø, Bodø, Turku, Faroe Islands, St. Johns in Newfoundland and Fairbanks, Alaska. Funding for the project was obtained from the Nordic Council of Ministers and co-funds the Ministry of Foreign Ministries of Iceland and Norway.
The Fisheries Science Center's website is hosted by The University of Akureyri. The site currently provides information only in Icelandic, but it provides information on the Center and it's staff, current and past projects and researches as well as links to various sites that deal with fisheries issues around the world.