Research Overview » Norway » National Fellowship Programme

The National Norwegian Artistic Research Fellowship Programme

Coordinated by Bergen National Academy of the Arts (KHiB)

Bergen, Oslo, Lillehammer, Trondheim, Tromsø (Norway)


Design, Film, Fine Art, Music, Performing Arts

The research fellowship should lead to a diploma at PhD level.

Number of third cycle students
44 throughout Norway

KHiB has been coordinating the National Norwegian Artistic Research Fellowships Programme since 2003. The majority of research fellows are actually enrolled at Bergen National Academy of the Arts, Oslo National Academy of the Arts, and the National Academy of Music; others are at the Norwegian Film School, Trondheim Academy of Fine Art, and the music departments of Tromsø, Bergen and Trondheim University.
The programme is led by a steering committee in which all participating institutions have a representative.

The programme attempts to find a 50/50 balance between artistic and academic approaches. As a first rule, the artistic level of applicants should be high; but equally, it is required that they can describe what their artistic practice is about. The student is required to document and reflect on the project, but not to submit a written thesis; he or she has ‘to find his own way to communicate’.
The fellowship should result in an artistic product, not in a thesis; the examination consists of a public, viva voce presentation and defense. Until now two exams have been dismissed for artistic reasons, since they were found not to be on the stipulated international level of artistic quality. In these cases students were allowed to present new/altered work.

Publications and conferences
Research fellows are expected to participate in mandatory courses and attend two-day research seminars that are organized twice a year. On top of that, KHiB organizes the yearly Sensuous Knowledge conference on artistic research at Solstrand, near Bergen.
Under that name, KHiB has also published a series of proceedings and monographs, seven to date.

Each student has a main and a second supervisor; ideally, there should be three, one international, one from a theoretical background. Supervisors are not required to hold a research degree.

Embedding within the institution
Research fellows are being employed in teaching and supervision. As most of the students are accomplished artists, it is encouraged they often meet and work with BA and MA students to pass on their knowledge and expertise.
Bergen National Academy of the Arts, the coordinating institution, has about 300 students and 100 teachers. It offers a 3-year BA and a 2-year MA. The departments are Fine Art, Design, and Specialised Art (BA only).

Funding and Stipendia
Funding is for three years, currently NOK 353.000 per year. This is to cover all costs of living and working; for special requirements, there is a small sum of extraordinary support available. Additionally, the programme is open to students who can secure external funding.