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Norway: NOVA - Norwegian Social Research

NOVA is a research institute under the auspices of the Norwegian Ministry of Education and Research. The aim of the institute is to develop knowledge and understanding of social conditions and processes of change. We focus on issues of life-course events, level of living conditions and aspects of life-quality as well as on programmes and services provided by the welfare system.

NOVA - Norwegian Social Research

NOVA´s strategic position can be characterized as follows: "A research environment with emphasis on a broad-based social science approach combined with a life-course perspective."

Areas of research
NOVA´s key research areas are:

  • Childhood and child welfare
  • Youth
  • Ageing and the life-course
  • Family
  • Social security and social assistance
  • Housing
  • Migration
  • Welfare state
  • Health and welfare

Organizational set-up:
Research activity at NOVA is organized into four research groups: 

  • Department of Childhood, Family and Child Welfare Research (Research Director: Lars B. Kristofersen)
  • Department of Youth Research (Research Director: Anders Bakken)
  • Department of Ageing Research and Housing Studies (Research Director: Marijke Veenstra)
  • Department of Health and Welfare Studies (Research Director: Heidi Gautun)

Within its fields NOVA performs research assignments commissioned by public and private sector clients. Research conducted at NOVA is of a good international standard. The institute is the leading national research institute on child welfare, youth, ageing and the elderly, and social security.

See NOVAs involvement in international European projects and networks, 2009-2012.

See also: NOVA key figures 2011


Childwatch & Nova Collaborations.

Initiative for Research Cooperation between Child Researchers in Palestine and Norway (2000-2003)

The Scientific Conference on The Wellbeing and Welfare of the Palestinian Children Supported by NUFU and Childwatch International

Children's Perspectives on Citizenship and Nation Building

Cross-Cultural Child Research: Ethical Issues


According to its statutes the institute has a particular responsibility for

  • carrying out research on social problems, public services and transfer schemes
  • carrying out and developing research on the family, children and young people and the conditions under which they grow up
  • carrying out and developing research, pilot and development programmes with particular emphasis on vulnerable groups and child welfare services
  • carrying out and developing gerontological research and related research, including gerontology as an interdisciplinary science

Within its field the institute

  • runs projects on behalf of public authorities and organizations in the private and public sector
  • initiates research and development programmes
  • is community-oriented and interfaces with user enviroments on a broad front
  • is an active publisher and disseminator working in conjunction with users to ensure that its findings benefit the community
  • collaborates with research institutions and specialist enviroments in and outside Norway to maintain high professional standards

Contact information


NOVA - Norwegian Social Research
P.O. Box 3223 Elisenberg
N-0208 Oslo, Norway
Tlf.: +47 22 54 12 00
Fax: +47 22 54 12 01

The reception is open between 08.00 and 15.00 (closed during lunch 11.30-12.30)

Visiting address:
Munthes gt. 29, 0260 Oslo
Find NOVA on the map and get directions (pdf).

Main contact: Research director Elisabeth Backe-Hansen


Tags: Children and Culture, Children and Education, Children and Health, Children and Leisure, Children and Media, Children and technology, Children and Violence, Child poverty, Children's rights, Children's wellbeing, Children with disabilities, Child participation, Child development, Children in the legal system, Children in care, fostering and adoption, Child research methodology development, Gender issues, Minority children, Public policy towards/for children, Refugee and unaccompanied children, Sexual exploitation of children, Social exclusion and marginalisation, Social services towards children, Youth issues, Indicators, Children in conflict with the law, Migration, Welfare state issues at a national, Nordic and international level
Published Sep. 12, 2008 10:44 AM - Last modified June 7, 2013 11:54 AM