Akershus is a county in Norway, bordering Hedmark, Buskerud, Østfold. Akershus, with a little over 614,000 inhabitants, is the second most populated county by population after Oslo; the county is named after Akershus Fortress. The county administration is in Oslo, not part of the county per se; the county is conventionally divided into the traditional districts Follo and Romerike, which fill the vast part of the county, as well as the small exclave west of Oslo that consists of Asker and Bærum. This resulted after the transfer of the great municipality of Aker from Akershus County to Oslo in 1948. Embracing numerous suburbs of Oslo, notably Bærum, Akershus is one of the most densely populated areas in the country; the main national railway lines into Oslo run through Akershus with many junctions and stations such as Asker, Sandvika and Lillestrøm. Akershus includes some of the river Glomma; the county includes the historical place Eidsvoll, 48 km north of Oslo, in which the national assembly ratified the Norwegian constitution in 1814.
South of Eidsvoll is Oslo Airport at Gardermoen. Oslo's previous international airport, Fornebu, is located in Akershus; the estate of the crown prince is located in Asker. The county has Akershus University Hospital and Sykehuset Asker og Bærum; the main road from continental Europe, E6, enters Akershus in the south, runs through eastern Oslo, further to Gardermoen, into Hedmark County on the eastern shores of lake Mjøsa. E18 enters Akershus in the south-east, merges for a short stretch with E6 at Vinterbro in Ås, before running under central Oslo. E18 turns south-west through Bærum and Asker before entering Buskerud County north of Drammen. E16 runs from the intersection with E18 in Sandvika into Buskerud County west of Sollihøgda. All main railways out of Oslo run through Akershus: Southwest: the Drammen Line Southeast: the Østfold Line as two separate railways North: the Gjøvik Line Northeast: the Trunk Line, Gardermoen Line, Dovre Line East: the Kongsvinger Line Akershus became a fief in the 16th century, also included the current counties of Hedmark, Oppland and Oslo, as well as the municipalities of Askim, Trøgstad in the county of Østfold.
In 1662, Akershus became an Amt, in 1685, Buskerud was separated from Akershus and became an Amt of its own. In 1768, Hedmark and Oppland were separated from Akershus to become Oplandenes Amt. In 1842, the city of Christiania was made a separate Amt, as well. In 1919, the term Amt was changed to Fylke. In 1948, the greatest and the most populous municipality of Akershus, was transferred to the county of Oslo; the county is named after Akershus Fortress. The fortress was built in 1299, the meaning of the name is "the house of Aker"; the name is somewhat misleading now. In fact, the administration of Akershus sits outside the county, as well, in the centre of Oslo; the coat-of-arms is from modern times. It shows a gable from Akershus Fortress. Akershus has a total of 22 municipalities: Akershus county website Media related to Akershus at Wikimedia Commons Akershus travel guide from Wikivoyage
Education in Norway
Education in Norway is mandatory for all children aged 6–16. The school year in Norway runs from mid August to late June the following year; the Christmas holiday from mid December to early January divides the Norwegian school year into two terms. Presently, the second term begins in the beginning of January. Organized education in Norway dates as far back as medieval times. Shortly after Norway became an archdiocese in 1153, cathedral schools were constructed to educate priests in Trondheim, Oslo and Hamar. After the reformation of Norway in 1537, the cathedral schools were turned into Latin schools, it was made mandatory for all market towns to have such a school. In 1736 training in reading was made compulsory for all children, but was not effective until some years when ambulatory schools were established. In 1827, Norway introduced the folkeskole, a primary school which became mandatory for 7 years in 1889 and 9 years in 1969. In the 1970s and 1980s, the folkeskole was abolished, the grunnskole was introduced.
Traditionally poorer counties like Finnmark and Hedmark have the highest shares of inhabitants who only have completed the compulsory primary education, with numbers as high as 38%. The Norwegian school system can be divided into three parts: Elementary school, lower secondary school, upper secondary school; the Barneskole and Ungdomsskole levels are compulsory, are referred to as Grunnskole. Elementary and lower secondary school are mandatory for all children aged 6–16. Before 1997, mandatory education in Norway started at the age of 7. Students have to change school when they enter lower secondary school and always have to change school when they enter upper secondary school, as many schools only offer one of the levels. In the first year of primary school, students spend most of their time playing educational games and learning social structures, the alphabet, basic addition and subtraction, basic English skills. In Grades 2-7, they are introduced to mathematics, science, religion and music, complemented by geography and social studies in the fifth grade.
No official grades are given at this level. However, the teacher writes a comment and sometimes an unofficial grade on tests. Tests are to be shown to parents. There is an introductory test to let the teacher know if the student is above average or is in need of some assistance at school; when the students enter lower secondary school, at age 12 or 13, they begin getting grades for their work. Their grades together with their location in the country will determine whether they get accepted to their upper secondary school of choice or not. From eighth grade, students can choose one elective. Typical offered subjects are German and Spanish as well as additional English and Norwegian studies. Before the educational reform of August 2006, students could choose a practical elective instead of the languages. Teens born in 1999 and could once again choose a practical elective upon starting lower secondary school, thus getting the option to choose two electives. A student may take the Grade 10 exam in a particular subject early as long as he or she has been granted an exemption from further instruction in the elementary/middle school curriculum of that subject.
In 2009, Norwegian fifteen-year-olds performed better in OECDs Programme for International Student Assessment than other Scandinavian countries, with significant improvement since 2006. In mathematics, the top scoring 10% were estimated to lag three years behind the top scoring students in Shanghai. Secondary education in Norway is based on public schools: In 2007, 93% of upper secondary school students attended public schools; until 2005, Norwegian law held private secondary schools to be illegal unless they offered a "religious or pedagogic alternative", so the only private schools in existence were religious, Steiner/Waldorf, Montessori schools, Danielsen. The first "standard" private upper secondary schools opened in the fall of 2005. Videregående is the equivalent to a high-school. Prior to 1994 there were three branches of upper secondary schooling: "General", "mercantile", "vocational" studies; the high school reform of 1994 merged these branches into a single system. Among the goals of the reform was that everybody should have a certain amount of "general studies" large enough to make them eligible for higher education meaning more theory in vocational studies, it should be possible to cross over from one education path to another without losing too much credit.
In the old system, two years of carpentry would be wasted if you wanted to switch to general studies, but in the new system you could keep credit for at least half of it. Since the introduction of the reform Kunnskapsløftet in the fall of 2006, a student can apply for a general studies or a vocational studies path. Inside these main paths there are many sub-paths to follow. An upper secondary school offers general and vocational curriculum. Vocational studies follow a typical structure named the "2+2 model": After two years of school training, the student goes in apprenticeship for two year
Morten Harket is a Norwegian vocalist and musician, best known as the lead singer of the synthpop/rock band A-ha, which released ten studio albums and topped the charts internationally after their breakthrough hit "Take On Me" in 1985. A-ha disbanded in 2010. In 2015, after each member pursued his own artistic path, A-ha reunited to produce a new album, Cast In Steel, perform a world tour, kicking off at Rock in Rio in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on 27 September 2015. Harket has released six solo albums. Before joining A-ha in 1982, Harket had appeared on the Oslo club scene as the singer for blues outfit Souldier Blue; the trio, composed of lead vocalist Harket, guitarist Paul Waaktaar-Savoy, keyboardist Magne Furuholmen, formed on 14 September 1982, left Norway for London in order to make a career in the music business. They chose the studio of musician and soon-to-be-manager, John Ratcliff, because it had a Space Invaders machine. Ratcliff introduced the band to his manager, Terry Slater, after a few meetings, A-ha had two managers.
Slater and Ratcliff together formed T. J. Management. Ratcliff dealt with all the musical aspects; the band says the name. Morten was looking through Paul's notebook, came across the name, which he liked, decided, the right name. In 1984, A-ha released their first single, "Take On Me", which became a hit only on the third attempt in 1985, after it had been re-recorded and accompanied by a music video directed by Steve Barron; the single's international success helped A-ha's debut album Hunting High and Low to sell over 10 million copies worldwide. Their second studio album was Scoundrel Days, followed by Stay on These Roads and East of the Sun, West of the Moon; the band issued the commercially disappointing Memorial Beach, after which the band went on hiatus. Harket re-joined his colleagues in A-ha in 1998 to perform at the Nobel Peace Prize concert. Since 1998, A-ha has released several compilations, their eighth studio album Analogue was released in 2005, became a big hit worldwide, achieving Platinum certification in the UK.
The band's last studio album before their split, Foot of the Mountain, was released in the spring of 2009. Harket held a note for 20.2 seconds in A-ha's 2000 song "Summer Moved On", believed to be the longest note in UK chart history. The note held exceeds the chest voice note in Bill Withers' famous song Lovely Day by 2.2 seconds. In October 2009, A-ha announced that they would disband after a farewell tour in 2010. Tickets for A-ha's final concert at the Oslo Spektrum on 4 December 2010 sold out within 2 hours. On 27 September 2015, A-ha reunited for a huge crowd assembled at Rock in Rio 2015 festival in Rio de Janeiro, which led to a reunion tour and the Cast in Steel album. In June 2017 the band performed for MTV Unplugged in their homeland; the performance was released as a live album that September, the acoustic version of "Take On Me" was made part of the soundtrack of the Hollywood movie Deadpool 2. Paul Waaktaar-Savoy describes Harket as being "totally different from me." He recalls the band's first visit to London together, during which Harket burned all his clothes and re-fashioned his wardrobe.
"He has given me self-confidence, encourages me to talk to people, not to be afraid and to use the abilities I have. Morten is the only one in Norway who had as much ambition as I did. I guess we both have big egos. In a way, we're each sitting in our own little world. Mags has to mediate between Morten and me... It's good; the tension between us is creative."Magne Furuholmen describes Harket as "together". Furuholmen says Harket "believes in everything he does; this goes for the band too, it rubs off on us. He can not be shaken. He's an expert at always getting the last word, whether he's not. Morten is loyal and he's fair when it comes to giving people a chance, letting them show who they are and what they're worth before judging them." The three members of a-ha, Morten Harket, Magne Furuholmen and Paul Waaktaar-Savoy, were appointed Knights of the 1st Class of the Royal Norwegian Order of St. Olav for their contribution to Norwegian music; the Royal Norwegian Order of St. Olav is granted as a reward for distinguished services to their country and humankind.
The official ceremony took place on 6 November 2012. Before Morten joined Pål and Magne, he was the lead singer of a soul band called "Souldier Blue". In 1993, Harket performed a cover of "Can't Take My Eyes Off You" by Crewe/Gaudio on the Coneheads movie soundtrack in 1993. After A-ha went on a hiatus in 1994, Harket pursued a solo career, has so far released six studio albums. Two of those albums were sung in Norwegian, but his 1995 album, Wild Seed, became more of an international success because of its English lyrics. Harket worked with a Norwegian poet, to write most of the songs. "A Kind of Christmas Card" and "Spanish Steps" were the most successful numbers. The rest were either easy listening songs, or more profound songs, such as "East Timor" and "Brodsky Tune" which had political messages in them. Harket has collaborated in studio recordings with several artists. Among them, Pakistan rock band Junoon on the song "Piya", Hayley Westenra on "Children First", he has performed and worked with many other Scandinavian artists such as Bjørn E
A-ha is a Norwegian band formed in Oslo in 1982. Founded by Paul Waaktaar-Savoy, Magne Furuholmen and Morten Harket, the band rose to fame during the mid-1980s and continued its global success in the 1990s and the 21st century. A-ha achieved their biggest success with their debut album Hunting High and Low in 1985; that album peaked at number one in their native Norway, number 2 in the UK, number 15 on the US Billboard album chart. In the UK, Hunting High and Low continued its chart success into the following year, becoming one of the best-selling albums of 1986; the band released studio albums in 1986, 1988, 1990. In 1994, after their fifth studio album, Memorial Beach, failed to achieve the commercial success of their previous albums, the band went on a hiatus. Following a performance at the Nobel Peace Prize Concert in 1998, A-ha recorded their sixth album, 2000's Minor Earth Major Sky, another number-one hit in Norway and resulted in a new tour; this album was followed by Lifelines. On 15 October 2009, the band announced they would split after the 2010 worldwide Ending on a High Note Tour.
Thousands of fans from at least 40 different countries on six continents congregated to see A-ha for the last leg of the tour. On 4 December 2014, A-ha announced its participation at Rock In Rio 2015, which celebrated 30 years for both the band and the event. In 2015, it was announced, their tenth studio album, Cast in Steel, was released on 4 September 2015, the band toured in support of the album. The band has released several compilations and four live albums. In less than a year, during 2010, the band earned an estimated 500 million Norwegian Kroner from concert tickets and the release of a greatest hits album, making them one of the 40–50 largest grossing bands in the world; the band were listed in the Guinness World Records book for having the biggest rock concert attendance. Another record for the band is for singer Morten Harket, listed in the Guinness World Records book in 2001 for the longest live note held. According to their label, they have sold 55 million records; the trio, composed of lead vocalist Morten Harket.
They jettisoned that idea. "It was a terrible song but a great name," says Morten. They chose the studio of musician and soon-to-be-manager John Ratcliff because it had a Space Invaders machine. John Ratcliff introduced them to his manager, Terry Slater, after a few meetings, A-ha enlisted Ratcliff as a manager as well. Slater and Ratcliff formed TJ Management. Ratcliff dealt with technical and musical aspects, Slater acted as the group's international business manager and as liaison to Warner Brothers' head office in Los Angeles. An early version of "Take On Me" was the first song that Morten Harket had heard Magne Furuholmen and Pål Waaktaar play in Asker. At that time, the song was called "The Juicy Fruit Song", the two men were still known as Bridges, it was named "Lesson One". After some re-writing, multiple re-recordings, three releases, "Take On Me" became a hit on both sides of the Atlantic in 1985; the first version of the song, released in 1984, was promoted by a video of the band performing the song in front of a blue background.
The song was re-recorded with production by Alan Tarney, but both of these releases failed to chart. It was re-released with a new, groundbreaking video which peaked at number 1 on the US Billboard Hot 100 and at number 2 on the UK Singles Chart. A-ha became the first Norwegian band to have a number 1 song in the US; the video used a pencil-sketch animation/live-action combination called rotoscoping, in which individual frames of live video are drawn over or coloured. It became one of the most recognisable and most enduringly popular music videos in the US where it was nominated for eight awards at the third annual MTV Video Awards in 1986, winning six, including Best New Artist in a Video, Best Concept Video, Best Direction, Best Special Effects, Viewer's Choice and Best Video of the Year, their six MTV Award wins for that video gave them twice as many wins as Michael Jackson's "Thriller" and more than any artist in the three years of the awards combined. The band's second single was "The Sun Always Shines on TV".
In the US the song peaked at number 20 on the Billboard Hot 100 and reached number 17 on Radio & Records airplay chart. A remix version was a club hit; the music video for the song was another popular and critical success, nominated in three categories at the 1986
Helge Lund is a Norwegian businessman, Chairman of BP since September 2018, a director of Schlumberger since June 2016. He is the former chief executive officer of BG Group and Aker Kværner. Lund was born in Oslo, Norway, in 1962, he graduated in business management at the Norwegian School of Economics in Bergen. He has a Master of Business Administration from the INSEAD business school in France, he started his career as a management consultant for McKinsey & Company and as political adviser for the Conservative Party in the Norwegian parliament Stortinget, before starting work for Hafslund Nycomed in 1993. In 1997-8 he was vice president in Nycomed Pharma before starting work in Aker RGI in 1999 as vice president before becoming CEO for Aker Kværner in 2002. After Olav Fjell withdrew as CEO of Statoil in 2004, Lund took over and was retained after Statoil merged with the oil & gas division of Norsk Hydro in 2007 to create StatoilHydro. On 15 October 2014, Lund resigned as CEO for Statoil with immediate effect, to join the management team of the UK's BG Group as CEO from 9 February 2015.
On 1 December 2014, in response to pressure from shareholders, BG Group reduced a £12 million share award golden hello for Lund to between £4.7 million to £10.6 million, depending on the company's future performance. His basic salary will be £1.5 million, but with bonuses, total compensation could reach £14 million per annum. Following the takeover of BG Group by Royal Dutch Shell, Lund was out of a job, but did receive a total of £5.5 million for his 11 months work, £9.7 million in shares in February 2016, as a result of the takeover. In June 2016, Lund was appointed to the board of directors of Schlumberger. On 26 April 2018, it was announced by BP that he would join their board on the 1 September 2018 and succeed Carl-Henric Svanberg as chairman with effect from 1 January 2019, he is married to Else-Cathrine Lund
Equinor ASA is a Norwegian multinational energy company headquartered in Stavanger, Norway. It is a wind energy company with operations in thirty-six countries. By revenue, while under Statoil name, Equinor was ranked by Forbes Magazine as the world's eleventh largest oil and gas company and the twenty-sixth largest company, regardless of industry, by profit in the world; the company has about 20,200 employees. The current company was formed by the 2007 merger of Statoil with the oil and gas division of Norsk Hydro; as of 2017, the Government of Norway is the largest shareholder with 67% of the shares, while the rest is public stock. The ownership interest is managed by the Norwegian Ministry of Energy; the company is headquartered and led from Stavanger, while most of their international operations are led from Fornebu. The name Equinor was adopted in 2018 and is formed by combining “equi,” the root for words such as equal and equilibrium, “nor,” indicating that the company is of Norwegian origin.
The former name Statoil meant in Norwegian: State-Oil, indicating that the oil company is state owned. The heritage of Statoil derives from three major Norwegian petroleum companies Statoil, Norsk Hydro, Saga Petroleum. Den Norske Stats Oljeselskap A/S was founded as a limited company owned by the Government of Norway on 14 July 1972 by a unanimous act passed by the Norwegian parliament Stortinget; the political motivation was Norwegian participation in the oil industry on the continental shelf and to build up Norwegian competency within the petroleum industry to establish the foundations of a domestic petroleum industry. Statoil was required to discuss important issues with the Minister of Industry Minister of Petroleum and Energy. Statoil was required to submit an annual report to the parliament. In 1973 the company started work acquiring a presence in the petrochemical industry; this resulted in the development of processing plants in Rafnes and, in partnership with Norsk Hydro, the Mongstad plant in 1980.
In 1981 the company acquired, as the first Norwegian company, operator rights on the Norwegian continental shelf on the Gullfaks field. 1987-88 saw the largest scandal in the company's history, the Mongstad scandal that made the until unassailable CEO Arve Johnsen withdraw. In the 1980s Statoil decided to become a integrated petroleum company and started building the Statoil fuel station brand; the stations in Norway originated as Norol stations while the stations in Denmark and Sweden were purchased from Esso in 1985, while the stations in Ireland were purchased from British Petroleum in 1992 and ConocoPhilips Jet in the mid'90s sold by Statoil to Topaz Oil in 2006. Statoil built up a network of stations in part of Eastern Europe in the 1990s. In 1991 a controversy arose between Statoil and local environmentalists from Natur og Ungdom and Friends of the Earth Norway, who protested the building of a new research and development centre at Rotvoll, in Trondheim, Norway, a wetlands area close to the city with significant bird life.
The controversy climaxed with civil disobedience by the environmentalists, but the centre was still built. The company was privatised and made a public limited company in 2001, becoming listed on both the Oslo Stock Exchange and the New York Stock Exchange. At the same time it changed its name to Statoil ASA; the government retained 81,7% of the shares. Through further privatization in 2004 and 2005 the government's share was reduced to 70,9%; the company operated three brands of fuel stations: Statoil, 1-2-3. Statoil operated petrol station services in Denmark, Ireland, Lithuania, Poland and Sweden; some automated stations are branded 1-2-3. In Sweden the company operated Hydro stations. In total Statoil had about 2,000 fuel stations; the Statoil/Horton case refers to the company's use of bribes in Iran in 2002–2003 in an attempt to secure lucrative oil contracts in that country. This was achieved by hiring the services of Horton Investments, an Iranian consultancy firm owned by Mehdi Hashemi Rafsanjani, son of former Iranian President Hashemi Rafsanjani.
Horton Investments was paid $15.2 million by Statoil to influence important political figures in Iran to grant oil contracts to Statoil. The corruption scandal was uncovered by the Norwegian paper Dagens Næringsliv on September 3, 2003. In 2006, the company accepted a $10.5 million fine for violating the U. S Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. In September 2007, Statoil and the Brazilian oil company Petrobras signed a deal aimed at expanding exploration, sub-sea, biofuels cooperation. Under the agreement Statoil became a partner on six offshore licenses, as well as expanding biofuels production. Petrobras and Statoil announced plans to create dozens of refineries in Brazil and the rest of the world where vegetable oil will be added to crude to create a no-sulphur fuel. On 4 March 2008, Statoil bought Anadarko Petroleum Corporation's 50% share of the Peregrino oil field for US$1.8 billion. In 2007 Statoil bought a large area in the Athabasca oil sand field in Canada after purchasing North American Oil Sands Corporation for $2.2 billion..
In 2009, Statoil launched the world's first operational deep-water floating large-capacity wind turbine, Hywind. The 120 metres tall tower with a 2.3 MW turbine was towed 10 kilometres offshore into the Amoy Fjord in 220 metres deep water, off of Stavanger, Norway on 9 June 2009 for a two-year test run. In 1965 Hydro joined Elf Aquitaine and