autumn 2022
BNS-1011 Culture and Identity in the Barents Region - 10 ECTS

Type of course

The course is an elective for the Bachelor of Northern Studies.

Course content

This course introduces students to a set of important backgrounds and contexts illustrating ongoing cultural processes and identity formation in the borderland of the Nordic and Russian countries, specifically known as the Barents Euro-Arctic Region. Indigenous cultures of the Sàmi peoples are introduced using a plurality of ways; interpretation of traditional life and culture (nature-culture relationship), formation of identity (ethno-politics) and cultural meaning-making in response to nation state building, new cultural inventions leading to the development of Indigenous tourism.

The contemporary borderland situation between Nordic countries and Russia is discussed in relation to history, the changing nature of borders (globalisation), political contexts, increased internationalisation and tourism. The aforementioned open new opportunities to study business life among the Nordic countries and Russia where communication and trust (values) and corporate/organisational culture are set in relation to a wider international and global framework.

As part of teaching, students will also undertake relevant research approaches to study specified themes presented in the course.

Objectives of the course

Upon completion of the course, students will be able to:


  • Explain the general forms and manifestations of culture in the Barents Euro-Arctic Region.
  • Identify cultural dynamics and situational aspects regarding Indigenous Peoples traditions, the Norwegian-Russian borderland, community and business cultures.


  • Analyse cultural dynamics and processes in relation to ethno-political issues, transnational regional (global) integration and corporate culture.
  • Assess the main dynamics of centre-periphery associated with national, and transnational processes in the Norwegian and Russian North.

General competence

  • Critically assess different cultural forms and patterns with regards to traditional and contemporary life in the Barents Euro-Arctic Region.

Language of instruction and examination


Teaching methods

Lectures, group work and discussions. Class attendance is obligatory (at least 75 %).

One part of the course involves an excursion and classes in Kirkenes, or other destinations in East Finnmark.

Quality assurance; Before the end of every course, an evaluation of the course will be arranged in collaboration with the teacher and the student.


Examination: Date: Duration: Grade scale:
Off campus exam 06.12.2022 09:00 (Hand out)
08.12.2022 14:00 (Hand in)
3 Days A–E, fail F

Coursework requirements:

To take an examination, the student must have passed the following coursework requirements:

Development of a term-paper Approved – not approved
Class attendance Approved – not approved
UiT Exams homepage

More info about the coursework requirements

  • Development of a term paper
  • Class attendance (75%)

Re-sit examination

If you fail your exam there will be a re-sit examination.
  • About the course
  • Campus: Alta |
  • ECTS: 10
  • Course code: BNS-1011
  • Tidligere år og semester for dette emnet