Consultation Process

Consultation Process

  • Professional Groups

At the beginning of the project in 2008, an extensive consultation with the population and stakeholders on the formation of the indices for the project began. Two meetings were held, one in Húsavík and one in Reykjahlíð, where stakeholders and the community were invited to influence the choice of indices for the project. In 2016, when the results had been processed from this consultation, the second part of the consultation process began. A decision was made to collaborate with experts in each category of sustainability. The roles of professional groups and experts in each area were defined and a consultation meeting was held in Laugar in Reykjadalur.

The roles of professional groups were:

  • To criticise the choice of indices.
  • To criticise the presentation of indices.
  • To criticise the categorisation of indices.
  • To suggest new indices.
  • To instruct on data collection.
  • To suggest monitoring and criteria.

This meeting was held in Seigla – Centre for Creation and the groups got an introduction on the project and there was a discussion on criteria in sustainability, population and flow. Following the presentations, the indices were reviewed and suggestions for changes made.

When the consultation with the professional groups was done, a suggestion of 44 indices along with comments on criteria had been finished. When the suggestions and comments had been processed, the next step in the consultation progress began.

Since the youth in the area had not participated in open meetings on the economy, a visit was made to the secondary schools in Húsavík and Laugar. A presentation of the project was made and following that students were split into three groups and each of them commented on one category of indices and their criteria.

Following the collaboration with the youth, the public and stakeholders were once again invited to the table. Two meetings were held where the project and its status was introduced. Following the presentation, the guests were then divided into groups where they tackled the following questions:

  • What are your expectations for the changes following the industrial growth, Þeistareykir power plant and an increase in tourism?
  • What are your concerns for the changes coming with the industrial growth, Þeistareykir power plant and an increase in tourism?
  • Are there criteria measuring those expectations and worries? If not, what criteria need to be added?
  • Does any of the criteria need to be changed or are any unnecessary?

This collaboration with the public and stakeholders gave important suggestions on the criteria, both some that could be added and some that they found unnecessary.

The comments made were examined, indices improved and decreased further. Today the indices are 20 and the criteria used for those are 37.

Professional Groups

Professional groups were appointed as following:

Community group

  • University of Akueyri – Marta Einarsdóttir
  • Centre for Gender Equality – Bergljót Þrastardóttir
  • Icelandic Regional Development Institute – Guðmundur Guðmundsson
  • Icelandic Tourism Research Centre – Kristín Sóley Björnsdóttir

           Directorate of Health and The Social Science Research Institute did not accept the offer of appointing someone for the professional group. 

Environmental group

  • University of Akureyri – Brynhildur Bjarnadóttir
  • Northeast Iceland Nature Research Centre – Aðalsteinn Örn Snæþórsson
  • Orkusetur (energy agency) – Sigurður Friðleifsson
  • Mývatn Research Station – Árni Einarsson
  • The Environment Agency of Iceland – Hildur Vésteinsdóttir

           The University of Iceland's Research Centre in Húsavík appointed someone for the group but that individual could not make the meeting. 

Economy group

  • University of Akureyri – Jón Heiðar Þorvaldsson
  • The Institute of Economic Studies – Ásgeir Heimisson
  • Icelandic Tourism Research Centre – Lilja Berglind Rögnvaldsdóttir
  • Icelandic Regional Development Institute – Anna Lea Gestsdóttir
  • Verkfræðistofa Jóhanns Indriðasonar ehf. (engineering firm) – Jón Skafti Gestsson

          The University of Iceland's Research Centre in Húsavík did not appoint someone for the group but a member of staff was appointed by the Icelandic Tourism Research Centre.