The Northern Lights Route has been opened on the 50th-anniversary of the European Council. Developed by the University of Tromsø Library, this project has been commissioned by the Ministry of Cultural Affairs and the National Library.


Netsite contributors:


    Web and graphics:



    Sigmund Nesset

    Stein Høydalsvik

    Rune Hagen and Sigmund Nesset

    Mark Ledingham

Although the Northern Lights Route is still in an early phase of development, the project was given final approval, in 1997, as a new addition to the Council of Europe Cultural Routes. The aim of the Northern Lights Route is to shed light upon the dispersion of European culture from the Norwegian coast to the Barents Sea and the Baltic. This project will illustrate, too, how the northern regions - with attractions such as the northern lights and the midnight sun - have drawn explorers and adventurers alike to the Arctic for centuries. We wish to show how their discoveries have become part of our scientific chronicles, literature and art treasures. The Northern Lights Route has been planned in cooperation with the National Library, the University of Tromsø Library and the Barents Secretariat. Funding has come from the Ministry of Cultural Affairs and others.

The project, The Northern Lights Route, is intended to continue until the year 2005. Its purpose is to create greater insight into the culture of the Barents region through documentation and the proliferation of knowledge. In the longer run, the project will also make arrangements for cultural tourism. Our aims are targeted at all Europeans who are searching for cultural experiences and a cultural identity.

The University of Tromsø will be responsible for the results of the project's research, while the Barents Secretariat has a managerial task. In addition, the National Library has a coordinating role and the responsibility for taking new technology in use as a means of communication aimed at target groups.

Resource personnel:

    National Library: Bendik Rugaas or
Annike Selmer
tel. (+47) 23 27 63 00
    University of Tromsø Library: Sigmund Nesset tel. (+47) 77 64 41 55


   © University Library of Tromsø - 1999.
The Northern Lights Route is part of The Council of Europe Cultural Routes. The Cultural Routes are an invitation to Europeans to wander the paths and explore the places where the unity and diversity of our European identity were forged.