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Supporting research-based education

June 24, 2009, 17:23 CEST


Margaret Øvrum (on screen in background), StatoilHydro's executive vice president for Technology & New Energy, signed a research agreement with the Norwegian University of Science and Technology in Trondheim (NTNU) and rector Torbjørn Digernes in a virtual ceremony between Bergen and Trondheim on 24 June. The NTNU is one of eight research institutions in the Akademia research programme. (Photo: Gorm Kallestad / SCANPIX)

"With these agreements the group wishes to encourage innovation and research-based education in strategically important areas of expertise in the field of energy," says Margaret Øvrum, executive vice president for Technology & New Energy.

The Akademia agreements strengthen StatoilHydro's long-standing collaboration with Norwegian education institutions. Among other things, it is part of the group's focus on science studies to secure necessary future recruitment for society and StatoilHydro. The Akademia agreements are covered by the group's research budget. 


Executive vice president Margaret Øvrum represented StatoilHydro in Bergen when the agreement with NTNU was signed. She is pictured here with Reidar Helland (centre), head of petroleum technology at Gullfaks and Birgitte Schilling (left), vice president for StatoilHydro's research centre in Bergen. (Photo: Vidar Hardeland)

Virtual signing of university agreement
The largest single agreement, worth nearly NOK 20 million over five years, was concluded with the Norwegian University of Science and Technology in Trondheim (NTNU) on Wednesday 24 June.

The NTNU is a key supplier of prominent research and future employees of StatoilHydro.

The agreement was signed virtually via a big screen, SmartBoard and two collaboration rooms with high-tech equipment.

Rector Torbjørn Digernes sat in a new virtual reality lab at the NTNU in Trondheim, while Margaret Øvrum was in a corresponding room in Bergen signing the agreement electronically.

Strengthening education
The NTNU's new virtual reality room, which StatoilHydro has supported, will improve the quality of petroleum education in line with industry needs.

Students will be able to practise interdisciplinary collaboration here, gathering and processing real-time data and training in collaborative work practices between sea and land, across geographical and organisational boundaries.

This type of collaboration is becoming more and more usual in the oil and gas industry.

The Akademia R&D programme
  • Aims to encourage long-term research and education.
  • Has a budget of NOK 95 million for 2009.
  • Eight five-year bilateral collaboration agreements with the following Norwegian research and educational institutions: the universities of Oslo, Bergen, Stavanger and Tromsø, the NTNU, the Norwegian School of Economics and Business Administration in Bergen, Simula and Vista.
  • Basic scientific research through the Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters (Vista).
  • Embraces support for professorships and research and doctoral scholarships.
  • Financial support for student activities such as scholarship and tuition initiatives.
  • The agreements are to encourage cross-cutting collaboration among academic institutions in Norway and internationally.
  • Svalex (part of the NTNU agreement): field trip to Svalbard with 90 PhD and master degree candidates from five Norwegian universities.
  • All results generated through the agreements will as far as possible be made public and shared with others.