Understanding climate
for the benefit of society

Highlighting the Nordic Dimension

The 4th Nordic Conference on Climate Change Adaptation kicks off Monday 29th of August, with the first plenary roundtable focusing on ’climate adaptation and governance’.


nordic banner. Bjerknes

Following from the three successful earlier conferences the 4th Nordic Conference on Climate Change Adaptation will let scientists, practioners and stakeholders meet to discuss recent research findings, adaptation experiences, plans and practices for three days. The conference covers all sectors, both public and private.

On Monday, the opening plenary roundtable focuses on ’climate adaptation and governance’. Dr. Richard Klein from the Stockholm Environment Institute will be one of the panel members. Dr. Klein is one of the leading experts on climate adaptation, with scientific work studying the role of adaptation in the design and implementation of global climate policy agreement, as well as studies on societal and institutional challenges to adaptation.

During the conference Dr. Klein will be highlighting the Nordic Dimension as a keynote speaker under the headline “The role of the Nordic on global perspectives”. In an e-mail interview with the Bjerknes Centre Dr. Klein highlighted the quality and interdisciplinary nature of Nordic adaptation research.

- Nordic research on climate adaptation has made great advances since the turn of the millennium and has been influential well beyond the Nordic region. A "Nordic school" of adaptation research has emerged. The high quality and interdisciplinary nature of Nordic adaptation research, in particular the growing involvement of the social sciences, are internationally recognized, Dr. Klein replied when asked about the Nordic countries role in climate adaption globally.

Diverse Nordic approach

Dr. Klein also explained how some of the Nordic countries have taken more initiatives on climate adaptation than others. He makes a short list of initiatives in the five Nordic countries:

  • Finland: In 2005 Finland was the first EU country to publish a national adaptation strategy. Based on climate impact scenarios, it presented a range of possible adaptation measures to be mainstreamed by national sectoral authorities into existing practices and future planning. 

  • Sweden: In Sweden the publication of the final report of the Climate Change and Vulnerability Commission (2007) stimulated the development of adaptation policy that is based on stakeholder engagement, consensus and negotiation. The report recognised the responsibility of municipalities and county administrative boards to initiate adaptation efforts, to be supported by government financing. 

  • Denmark: Denmark published a ten-year national strategy for adaptation in 2008. The strategy noted the need for timely adaptation, but suggested that most adaptation would be autonomous. The purpose of the Danish strategy is therefore to develop a legislative, financial and technical framework within which authorities, companies and individuals can adapt according to their needs. 

  • Norway: Adaptation action in Norway was hampered by weak incentives but early research on vulnerability and adaptive capacity at the local level did help to raise awareness. In 2009 the government established an inter-departmental coordination team, to outline adaptation responsibilities of national sectoral agencies, and identify best-practice examples at the regional and municipal level. A national adaptation strategy was published in 2013

  • Iceland: Adaptation in Iceland has so far been overshadowed by mitigation. According to Iceland’s climate change strategy, the government will prepare for adaptation to climate change, but no specific adaptation strategy has yet been published.

Take a look at the full programme and read more on the conference here: nordicadaptation.2016