Intercultural Studies, Inclusion and Social Justice

The group’s research extends across traditional departmental divisions at NLA, and its primary interest is in cultural diversity in various contexts, locally, nationally and internationally.

The research group is multidisciplinary, and is rooted in social anthropology, cultural studies, religious studies, intercultural studies, intercultural pedagogy and multicultural teacher education. The group has a broad range of geographically diverse expertise: Norway (including Sápmi and multicultural Norway), France, China, Japan, Madagascar, Tanzania, Bolivia and the Dominican Republic.

The aim is to bring together all researchers who are interested in fundamental intercultural/multicultural issues, with the main focus on intercultural encounters, social justice and the inclusion of minority groups in multicultural communities.

Work of the research group

The research group analyses key challenges for the multicultural society nationally and internationally, in a historical, contemporary and future perspective. The group is closely linked to the NLA teaching portfolio, with the main emphasis on intercultural studies and pedagogy.

The cornerstones of the group’s work are defined as follows:

  1. Studies on intercultural interaction at local, national and international level, including transnational processes
  2. The relationship between minority and majority populations and inclusion
  3. Diversity and social justice
  4. Cultural diversity and sustainable development in the face of climate change


Hilde Wallem Nielssen (head of research group), Associate Professor
Frédérique Brossard Børhaug (deputy head of research group), Professor
Marit Brendbekken, Associate Professor
Helga Bjørke Harnes, PhD Research Fellow
Ole Johannes Kaland, Associate Professor
Judith Ologi, Assistant Professor
Solveig Omland, Associate Professor
Ronald Mayora Synnes, Associate Professor
Asle Jøssang, Associate Professor
Karina Hestad Skeie, Associate Professor
Svitlana Holovchuk, Associate Professor
Svein Strand, Associate Professor
Ingfrid Mattingsdal Thorjussen, Assistant Professor
Kalisha Wills, PhD Research Fellow
Line Alice Ytrehus, Professor
Åshild Samnøy, Assistant Professor
Jan Magne Steinhovden, Assistant Professor
Brit Marie Hovland, Associate Professor

Two research clusters at NLA are directly linked to this group: the VaKE (Values and Knowledge Education) research cluster ( and the HDCA (Human Development and Capability Approach) research cluster ( The group members are also affiliated with a number of research groups and networks within the university sector externally, which contribute to the research group’s academic output.

Work of the research group

Head of the research group: Hilde Wallem Nielssen
Vice Rector for Research and Development: Torgeir Landro