Famous Norwegian Intellectuals & Academics

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 1 
Jens Stoltenberg
(Economist, Politician)
Jens Stoltenberg
4
Birthdate: March 16, 1959
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Oslo

Jens Stoltenberg is a Norwegian politician who served as the Prime Minister of Norway between 2000 and 2013 in two separate terms. An influential politician, Stoltenberg also served as the Minister of Industry and Energy from 1993 to 1996 and Minister of Finance from 1996 to 1997. Jens Stoltenberg is the current Secretary General of NATO.

 2 
Thor Heyerdahl
(Norwegian Adventurer and Ethnographer Known for His ‘Kon-Tiki’ and ‘Ra’ Transoceanic Scientific Expeditions)
Thor Heyerdahl
5
Birthdate: October 6, 1914
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Larvik, Norway
Died: April 18, 2002
Norwegian explorer Thor Heyerdahl’s early interest in nature was inspired by his museum worker mother’s keen interest in Darwin’s theory of evolution. He often went on treks accompanied by his dog and later lived on Fatu Hiva with his wife. His later expeditions included his Kon-Tiki and Easter Island trips.
 3 
Johan Galtung
(Writer, Sociologist)
Johan Galtung
4
Birthdate: October 24, 1930
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Oslo, Norway

Johan Galtung is a Norwegian sociologist best known as the founder of a social science field called peace and conflict studies. He is also credited with founding the Peace Research Institute Oslo where he served as the director from 1959 to 1970. Renowned for his contribution to political science, economics, and history, Galtung won the Right Livelihood Award in 1987.

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 4 
Peter Wessel Zapffe
(Metaphysician, Mountaineer)
Peter Wessel Zapffe
3
Birthdate: December 18, 1899
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Tromsø, Norway
Died: October 12, 1990

Peter Wessel Zapffe was a Norwegian metaphysician, mountaineer, artist, author, and lawyer. He is best remembered for his 1933 essay The Last Messiah which was later included in his 1941 treatise On the Tragic. The essay reflects Peter Wessel Zapffe's philosophically pessimistic view of human existence.

 5 
Jan Egeland
(Norwegian Diplomat, Political Scientist and Former State Secretary in the 'Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs')
Jan Egeland
3
Birthdate: September 12, 1957
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Stavanger, Norway

Jan Egeland is a Norwegian political scientist, diplomat, humanitarian leader, and politician. Since 2013, he has been serving as the secretary general of a humanitarian, non-governmental organization called the Norwegian Refugee Council. In 2006, Egeland was included in Time's list of 100 people who shaped our world. Egeland is a recipient of Peer Gynt Prize and the Four Freedoms Award.   

 6 
Arne Næss
(Philosopher)
Arne Næss
3
Birthdate: January 27, 1912
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Slemdal, Oslo, Norway
Died: January 12, 2009

Arne Næss was a Norwegian philosopher best remembered for coining the term deep ecology. A prolific writer on several philosophical issues, Arne Næss also played an important and influential role in the environmental movement of the late 20th century.

 7 
May-Britt Moser
(Norwegian Psychologist, Neuroscientist and 2014 Nobel Prize Laureate in Medicine)
May-Britt Moser
4
Birthdate: January 4, 1963
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Fosnavåg, Norway

May-Britt Moser is a Norwegian neuroscientist and psychologist. She also serves as a professor at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology. She is best known for winning the Nobel Prize in Medicine in 2014 for her work pertaining to the grid cells in the brain's entorhinal cortex. She shared the award with her then-husband, Edvard Moser.

 8 
Ragnar Frisch
(Norwegian Economist Who Was a Joint Winner of the 1969 Nobel Prize for Economic Sciences)
Ragnar Frisch
3
Birthdate: March 3, 1895
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Oslo, Norway
Died: January 31, 1973

Ragnar Frisch was a Norwegian economist best remembered for co-founding the discipline of econometrics. Frisch is credited with coining the terms microeconomics and macroeconomics. In 1969, he became the first co-recipient of the prestigious Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences, which he shared with Jan Tinbergen. The University of Oslo houses the Frisch Centre, which is named after him.

 9 
Odd Arne Westad
(Historian)
Odd Arne Westad
2
Birthdate: January 5, 1960
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Norway

Odd Arne Westad is a Norwegian historian currently associated with Yale University as the Elihu Professor of History and Global Affairs. He specializes in the Cold War and contemporary East Asian history. In his works, he has underlined the ideological origins of the Cold War and the impact of the conflict on a global level. 

 10 
Fredrik Barth
(Anthropologist)
Fredrik Barth
0
Birthdate: December 22, 1928
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Leipzig, Germany
Died: January 24, 2016

Fredrik Barth was a Norwegian social anthropologist and professor. He is credited with founding the Department of Social Anthropology at the University of Bergen where he also served as a professor. He also held professorships at the Emory University, University of Oslo, and Harvard University. In 1985, Fredrik Barth was chosen as a government scholar.

 11 
Finn E. Kydland
(Economist)
Finn E. Kydland
2
Birthdate: December 1, 1943
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Algard

Finn E. Kydland is a Norwegian economist best known for his immense contribution and work pertaining to business cycle theory. In 2004, Finn E. Kydland and Edward C. Prescott were honored with the prestigious Nobel Memorial Prize in Economics for their contributions to the field of dynamic macroeconomics.   

 12 
Hans Jæger
(Norwegian Writer, Philosopher and Anarchist Political Activist )
Hans Jæger
2
Birthdate: September 2, 1854
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Drammen, Norway
Died: February 8, 1910

Norwegian author Hans Henrik Jæger led the Kristiania Bohemians, a politico-cultural movement. A supporter of sexual liberty, he penned the controversial book Fra Kristiania-Bohêmen, which was labeled as pornography, thus leading him to prison. He later fled to Paris and stayed there for most of his later life.

 13 
Trygve Haavelmo
(Nobel Prize Winner in Economics - 1989)
Trygve Haavelmo
2
Birthdate: December 13, 1911
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Skedsmo, Norway
Died: July 26, 1999

Trygve Haavelmo was a Norwegian economist whose work pertaining to the probability theory and his analyses of economic structures earned him the 1989 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences. Trygve Haavelmo also served as a professor of statistics and economics at the University of Oslo.

 14 
Thomas Hylland Eriksen
(Anthropologist)
Thomas Hylland Eriksen
0
Birthdate: February 6, 1962
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Oslo, Norway

Thomas Hylland Eriksen is a Norwegian anthropologist who is currently serving as a professor of social anthropology at the University of Oslo. A renowned figure in his field, he was the 2015–16 president of the European Association of Social Anthropologists. He often focuses on popularizing social anthropology. He is a member of the Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters. 

 15 
Ivar Aasen
(Norwegian Philologist, Lexicographer and Writer Who Created the Written Standard of ‘Nynorsk')
Ivar Aasen
2
Birthdate: August 5, 1813
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Ørsta, Norway
Died: September 23, 1896

Norwegian lexicographer and philologist Ivar Aasen developed the written standard of Nynorsk, or New Norwegian, one of the official languages of Norway. He broke away from the Danish-influenced Norwegian language and penned poems and plays in the other dialect. The Ivar Aasen Centre, named after him, now preserves the Nynorsk language.

 16 
Mads Gilbert
(Physician, humanitarian, activist, and politician for the Red Party)
Mads Gilbert
1
Birthdate: June 2, 1947
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Porsgrunn, Norway

Mads Gilbert is a Norwegian physician, activist, humanitarian, and politician. A specialist in anesthesiology, Gilbert heads the department of emergency medicine at the University Hospital of North Norway. He is also associated with the University of Tromsø where he serves as a professor of emergency medicine. Mads Gilbert's humanitarian work has attracted praises from several important politicians including Kåre Willoch.

 17 
Sophus Bugge
(Norwegian Philologist and Linguist Known for His Theories and His Work on the 'Runic Alphabet')
Sophus Bugge
1
Birthdate: January 5, 1833
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Lurvik, Norway
Died: July 8, 1907

Sophus Bugge was a Norwegian linguist and philologist best remembered for his work on runic alphabets. He also made significant contributions to the study of the Oscan, Romance, Celtic, Etruscan, and Umbrian languages. Sophus Bugge's scientific work was of primary importance for the runic research and Norse philology.

 18 
Peter Andreas Munch
1
Birthdate: December 15, 1810
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Oslo, Norway
Died: May 25, 1863

Professor and historian Peter Andreas Munch is regarded as one of the pioneers of the Norwegian nationalist school of historiography. He was also known for his translations of Norse legends and for his History of the Norwegian People. He believed in the racial superiority of Norwegians over Danes and Swedes.

 19 
Hans Olav Lahlum
(Writer, Chess player)
Hans Olav Lahlum
1
Birthdate: September 12, 1973
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Norway

Hans Olav Lahlum is a Norwegian crime author, historian, chess player, and politician. Well-known for his eccentricity and unconventional style, Hans Olav Lahlum was part of the longest interview ever in 2013, in which he was interviewed for more than 30 hours by Verdens Gang, setting a Guinness World Record. 

 20 
Henrik Steffens
(Norwegian Philosopher and Physicist, Who Combined Scientific Ideas with German Idealist Metaphysics)
Henrik Steffens
1
Birthdate: May 2, 1773
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Stavanger, Norway
Died: February 13, 1845

Born in the then-Dano-Norwegian city of Stavanger, Henrik Steffens grew up to be a fine philosopher. Initially a lecturer in the universities of Kiel and Jena, he later brought German romanticism to Denmark. He also taught mineralogy and physics and combined science and metaphysics. He also supported German nationalism.

 21 
Sigmund Mowinckel
(Norwegian Theologian and Scholar Known for His Research into the Practice of Religious Worship in Ancient Israel)
Sigmund Mowinckel
1
Birthdate: August 4, 1884
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Kjerringøy, Nordland, Norway
Died: June 4, 1965

Sigmund Mowinckel was a Norwegian professor and theologian. He was also a biblical scholar. He conducted extensive research into the practice of religious worship in ancient Israel. He studied at the University of Oslo and became a lecturer there. Many of his works relate to the Book of Psalms. He was a prolific writer and wrote many books and articles. 

 22 
Robert Meyer
(Photographer)
Robert Meyer
1
Birthdate: October 2, 1945
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Oslo, Norway

Robert Meyer is a Norwegian art photographer, photo historian, professor, writer, collector, and publicist. He is credited with founding a publishing company named Ikaros in 1976. In 1990, he became Norway's first professor of photography when he started teaching at the National College of Art. In 1998, Robert Meyer started a private college for photography in Oslo. 

 23 
Ola Raknes
(Writer, Philologist)
Ola Raknes
0
Birthdate: January 17, 1887
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Bergen, Norway
Died: January 28, 1975

Ola Raknes was a Norwegian philologist, psychologist, and non-fiction writer. Apart from achieving international recognition as a psychoanalyst, Raknes was also renowned for his contributions to enriching the Nynorsk language. Ola Raknes is also remembered for his association with Wilhelm Reich as one of Reich's closest students and fierce defenders.

 24 
Magnus Olsen
(Philologist)
Magnus Olsen
0
Birthdate: November 28, 1878
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Arendal, Norway
Died: January 16, 1963

Magnus Olsen was a Norwegian philologist best remembered for his work in Old Norse studies. A protége of Sophus Bugge, Olsen succeeded the former as Professor of Icelandic Literature and Old Norwegian at Royal Frederick University in 1908. Apart from being the leading Norwegian philologist of his generation, Olsen was also the founder of a journal named Maal og Minne.

 25 
Ragnhild Hatton
(Historian)
Ragnhild Hatton
0
Birthdate: January 10, 1913
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Bergen, Norway
Died: May 16, 1995

Ragnhild Hatton was a Norwegian historian who spent most of her life in London, England. Hatton is also remembered for her academic career. She was associated with the London School of Economics where she served as professor of International History. In 1981, Ragnhild Hatton was appointed Professor Emeritus and then went on to serve as Chairman of the History Department.

 26 
Absalon Pederssøn Beyer
(Norwegian Clergyman, Theologian and Historian)
Absalon Pederssøn Beyer
0
Birthdate: 1528 AD
Birthplace: Aurland, Norway
Died: April 9, 1575

Absalon Pederssøn Beyer was a Norwegian lecture, author, and Lutheran clergyman. He is best known for his diary Absalon Pederssøns dagbok, a documentation of contemporary events and one of the most significant sources of information of the social and cultural history of Bergen during mid-16th century. Absalon Pederssøn Beyer is also remembered for his immense contribution to Norway's spiritual Reformation.

 27 
Hans E. Kinck
(Norwegian Novelist, Short-Story Writer, Dramatist, Essayist, and Philologist)
Hans E. Kinck
0
Birthdate: October 11, 1865
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Oksfjord, Norway
Died: October 13, 1926

Hans E. Kinck was a Norwegian philologist and author who wrote short stories, essays, novels, and dramas. A respected literary figure, Kinck recieved seven nominations for the prestigious Nobel Prize in Literature during the course of his illustrious career. Such is the popularity of his works that composers like Eivind Groven and Wolfgang Plagge have written music to his works.

 28 
Marcus Jacob Monrad
(Philosopher)
Marcus Jacob Monrad
0
Birthdate: January 19, 1816
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Nøtterøy, Norway
Died: December 30, 1897

Marcus Jacob Monrad was a 19th-century Norwegian philosopher. He graduated as Candidatus theologiæ in 1840 and later became a professor at the Royal Frederick University. In a long academic career spanning four decades, he published three textbooks that became extremely popular. He took an active part in contemporary debates and was an influential personality.   

 29 
Anton Martin Schweigaard
(Norwegian Politician, Jurist and Economist Who Helped Bring About Norway’s Change to a Capitalist Economy)
Anton Martin Schweigaard
0
Birthdate: April 11, 1808
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Kragerø, Norway
Died: February 1, 1870

Anton Martin Schweigaard was a Norwegian economist, jurist, and educator who also served at the University of Christiania as a lecturer. During the 1830s and 1840s, he served as a professor of both economics and jurisprudence. Anton Martin Schweigaard was an ardent supporter and publicist for economic liberalism and is credited with helping Norway make a transition to capitalism.

 30 
Christian Lous Lange
(One of the World’s Foremost Exponents of the Theory and Practice of 'Internationalism')
Christian Lous Lange
0
Birthdate: September 17, 1869
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Stavanger, Norway
Died: December 11, 1938

Christian Lous Lange was a Norwegian teacher, historian, and political scientist. He was the grandson of the historian Christian C. A. Lange. Christian Lous Lange received a Candidatus theologiæ and pursued a teaching career. Later in life, he became known as one of the world's foremost exponents of the theory and practice of internationalism.