This spring the Nordic Research Council for Criminology hosted a research seminar on sexual violence in the Nordic countries. It was a seminar long in the making, as it was originally planned to be held in Halden, Norway, in 2020. However, due to the pandemic, the seminar was postponed and held in a digital format the following year.
The seminar addressed how Nordic countries; both their governments and citizens, understand as well as respond to sexual violence. In a research field one of the key note speakers, professor May-Len Skilbrei, claims is often approached as if ‘time and place does not exist’, the seminar focused on the specific Nordic context.
The research seminar gathered keynote experts on sexual violence from all the Nordic countries. In addition, the Nordic Research Council for Criminology, also published in a digital format ongoing research on a broad area of topics such as child sexual abuse, typologies of sexual assaults among young people and digital crime victimization – to mention a few.
While this material has been available online for some time, we are happy that also the keynote discussion now is published. Though we would have preferred a more traditional research seminar where young and more experienced researchers meet in person, we acknowledge that a benefit this time is that the research seminar gathered an even broader audience than usual. And it is available online for students, researchers and practitioners to immerse themselves in an important topic that continues to have relevance in all countries.
We believe this year’s online research seminar both will influence future research seminars and support the important ongoing Nordic criminological discussions – on how to understand and address sexual violence as well as other future Nordic research agendas.