Nordland Research Institute - NRI


Nordland Research Institute (Nordlandsforskning, NRI) is a research institute headquartered in Bodø, Norway. The institute, which was founded in 1979, is majority-owned by Nord University. NRI conducts research on topics related to business and industry, social science, and the environment. NRI’s thematic scope is extensive and cross-sectional, and the institute also participates in collaborative research and development projects together with public and private clients.

Role in project

Nordland Research Institute is Project Coordinator and Work Package 1 Leader. They are responsible for the daily administrative management and handling of the project logistics and monitoring the effective and efficient implementation of the project.

NRI is also the Academic lead for the Transition Coastal Lab in Norway. They are responsible for fieldwork and data analysis in the Norwegian TCL and organising local workshops in collaboration with work package leaders. They also support the Norwegian TCL host.

The Team


Maiken Bjørkan

Research Professor

Maiken is the project coordinator of EmpowerUs. She has an interdisciplinary background with a PhD from the Norwegian College of Fishery Science (NCFS), a Master of Science in Social Anthropology and a Master of Science in International Fisheries Management. Her research interests cover a variety of issues including the UN Sustainable Development Goals, and blue growth in the context of fisheries and coastal zone management – typically using co-production of knowledge approaches and STS theory to enlighten the increasing number of dilemmas at the science-policy interface.

Christian Buschmann Ekeland

Senior Researcher

Christian's main research areas are tourism and sports. Combining anthropology and psychology, his focus is on performance and learning. For his PhD, he investigated the role of the Norwegian cruise line, Hurtigruten, in destination developments along the arctic coastal line. Christian has previously taught destination development at UIT – The Arctic University of Norway. For the last six years, he has been the head of development in two different municipalities, designing plans and leading social development projects.

Cecilie Bratt

Senior Advisor

Cecilie has an international academic background with an interest in social injustices, gender equality, and Norway in a European and global context. She also has ten years of experience from working in different governmental organizations, primarily within the fields of digitalization, transport, communication, and process management. Cecilie is project manager of EmpowerUs, leading WP1.

Vida Maria Daae Steiro


Vida is interested in interdisciplinary research related to freshwater ecology and management, natural resource management, climate change and adaptation, nature mapping, and processes in planning and decision-making. She has a Master's degree in Natural Resource Management with a specialisation in Limnology. In EmpowerUs, she is involved in WP2 as the Academic lead for the Norwegian Transition Coastal Lab. She is also involved in developing the methodology in WP3.