The Annual Sustainability Conference at University of Akureyri

The conference starts with a student-led session in the form of a panel discussion, followed by several sessions on selected topics. In view of the international climate crisis, we invite international and national experts on climate change effects, mitigation, and adaptation to send us their topic and abstract by 14.01.2024. Other topics will be considered as well, for example regarding plastic pollution and ocean cleaning.

We also welcome sponsors/exhibitors, online or on-site, and will consider digital material that can be included in the online program (breaks) or exhibitions on-site next to our break buffet in the main entrance hallway of the University (with the option to keep exhibitions there for the week before and after the conference).


Participation is free and the conference will be held both on-site and online.



Spanning from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM, our conference unfolds across four dynamic sessions, each offering unique insights and opportunities for collaboration.

Session 1

09:00-09:20 Set Sails for Sustainability: Ocean Missions NGO citizen-science expeditions and micro-plastic research
Charla Jean Basran University of Iceland, HÚsavík Research Centre (Iceland)

09:20-09:40 The Akureyri Beach Cleanup Initiative - results and lessons learned
Johanna Franke University of Akureyri (Iceland)

09:40-10:00 Towards Marine Conservation and Sustainability in a Dynamic Area in Iceland: The Case of Skjálfandi Bay
Huld Hafliðadóttir SVÍVS (Samtök um verndun í og við Skjálfanda) (Iceland)

10:00-10:20 Ocean CDR: A Crucial Player in the Battle Against the Climate Crisis
Íris Mýrdal Running Tide (Iceland)

10:20-10:30 Shared discussion first-morning session

10:30-11:00 break

Session 2

11:00-11:20 Lake Debris in urban-scape small-scale fisheries, Is there a cause to worry? The case of Winam Gulf in Lake Victoria, Kenya
Patrick Otuo Wanguche Kenya Marine & Fisheries Research Institute (Kenya)

11:20-11:40 Emission-free Icelandic fisheries. How long to wait?
Stanislav Dudin Skipasyn (Iceland)

11:40-12:00 Wishcycling
Audrey Matthews University of Akureyri (Iceland)

12:00-12:20 Ethics in glacier protection under the pressure of climate change
Birgit Sattler University of Innsbruck (Austria)

12:20-12:30 Shared discussion second-morning session

12:30-13:30 Lunch break

Session 3

13:30-13:50 Education for sustainable development (ESD) – the role of teachers and teaching material
Brynhildur Bjarnadóttir University of Akureyri (Iceland)

13:50-14:10 Sustainability of mass timber construction; case study of Cross Laminated Timber (CLT) buildings in Iceland and elsewhere
Santi Davi, Rotho Blaas Ltd (UK)and Sverrir Steinn Ingimundarson, Element EHF (Iceland)

14:10-14:30 “From Sea to Street”: Addressing Sustainability Challenges through Street Art and Citizen Science
Marta Dievina The Latvian Academy of Culture (Latvia)

14:30-14:50 The Complex Relationship of Sustainability and Wilderness: Illustrated Through the Icelandic Case
Fulbright Iceland Scholar hosted by Stefansson Arctic Institute, Akureyri (Iceland)

14:50-15:00 Shared discussion first afternoon session

15:00-15.30 break

Session 4

15:30-15:50 The impact of climate vulnerability on new firm formation
Sorin Gabriel Anton Alexandru Ioan Cuza University of Iasi (Romania)

15:50-16:10 Sustainability Efforts between University of Akureyri (IS) and St. Mary’s College of Maryland (USA)
Christina Goethel St Mary's College of Maryland (Maryland)

16:10-16:30 Epibiotic fauna of cetaceans and sea turtles as indicators
Sofia Ten University of Valencia (Spain)

16:30-16:50 Materials Science and Microbial Biotechnology: How collaboration between two fields can lead to improvements in sustainable bioplastics production
Emily Herbert Drexel University Materials Science and Engineering (Philadelphia)

16:50-17:00 Shared discussion second-afternoon session


All abstracts for the conference are accessible here (pdf).


For additional inquiries, please find the contact information of our Environmental Council members below:

Programs from recent years

1st Sustainability Conference
2nd Sustainability Conference and Recordings from the 2nd Sustainability Conference
3rd Sustainability Conference and Recordings from the 3nd Sustainability Conference