One of the most important research areas of RNH is “green capitalism”, the exploration of possibilities of solving environmental problems by defining property rights to natural resources and facilitating free trade in them. RNH’s academic director, Professor Hannes H. Gissurarson, will participate in a Mont Pelerin Society meeting on the Galapagos Islands 22–29 June 2013 on “Evolution, the Human Sciences and Liberty”. Professor Gissurarson’s participation is also a part of the joint AECR-RNH research project “Europe, Iceland and the Future of Capitalism”.
In July, RNH will, with other institutions and organisations, celebrate Iceland’s Tax Freedom Day, which is the day on which an ordinary Icelander starts to work for himself, and ceases to work for government. RNH’s participation in this event forms a part of the joint AECR-RNH project “Europe, Iceland and the Future of Capitalism”.
23 August has been designed, by the European Parliament, as European Day of remembrance for victims of totalitarianism, both communism and nazism. On this day in 1939 Hitler and Stalin made their non-aggression treaty, launching the 2nd World War and dividing Central and Eastern Europe up between the two dictators. On 23 August 2013, a photo exhibition on the Icelandic communist movement will be opened at the National Library of Iceland. Historian Dr. Mart Nutt, Member of the Estonian Parliament and Chairman of the Estonian Institute of Human Rights, will deliver a paper on “Estonia: a Small Nation Under Foreign Yoke”. Forty years ago, in 1973, an Icelandic translation by then law student David Oddsson appeared of a book by Anders Küng of the same name (in Icelandic, Eistland: Smathjod undir oki erlends valds). As Prime Minister in 1991, Oddsson led the move to re-recognise the three Baltic states, under foreign occupation from 1940 to 1991.
On 16 September 2013 the photo exhibition at the National Library will be closed, in a ceremony where late Professor Arnor Hannibalsson will be specially honoured: a tireless critic of totalitarianism, he quietly supported Russian, Polish and Chinese dissidents. The secret Comintern documents on the Icelandic communist movement which Professor Hannibalsson obtained in Moscow after the fall of communism will be handed over to the National Library where they will be made accessible to all. Moreover, a website with online important books, articles and documents about Icelandic communism will be opened. Dr. Pawel Ukielski, director of the Warsaw Rising Museum, will give a lecture on the Warsaw Rising in 1944. Bjorn Bjarnason, former Minister of Justice, will chair the meeting. The photo exhibition and related events form part of the joint AECR-RNH project “Europe of the Victims”.
In the beginning of October 2013, Professor Hannes H. Gissurarson, RNH’s academic director, will go on a lecture tour in the Nordic and the Baltic countries. His two topics will be the Icelandic communist movement 1918–1998 on the one hand, and the 2008 collapse of the Icelandic banks on the other hand.
13 October 2013 marks the birthday of Mrs. Margaret Thatcher, Baroness Kesteven, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom 1979–1990, who passed away this year. On this occasion, Mr. John O’Sullivan, former editor of National Review, who assisted Mrs. Thatcher with her autobiography will talk about “The Real Iron Lady”, and Professor João Espada will give a lecture on the “Anglo-Saxon Political Tradition”. A trailer from the controversial film The Iron Lady—with Meryl Streep playing the role of Thatcher—will be shown, as well as segments of documentaries about Thatcher. This event forms a part of the joint AECR-RNH project “Europe, Iceland and the Future of Capitalism”. The meeting is co-sponsored by the English Speaking Union of Iceland.
On 18 October 2013, an Icelandic translation of We the Living by Ayn Rand will be published in an edition prepared by broadcaster Frosti Logason. Taking place in the first years of the Soviet Union, this is Ayn Rand’s most autobiographical novel. On this occasion, Dr. Yaron Brook from the Ayn Rand Institute in California will talk about Rand and her message for modern man. The publication of the novel and Brook’s lecture form a part of the joint AECR-RNH project “Europe of the Victims”.
On 1 December 2013 a conference on “The Future of Capitalism” is planned (subject to change) at the University of Iceland in honour of Professor Arni Vilhjalmsson, a leading Icelandic scholar, entrepreneur and supporter of the free market. Scheduled speakers include Professors Thrainn Eggertsson, Ragnar Arnason and Hannes H. Gissurarson as well as foreign scholars. This event forms a part of the joint AECR-RNH project “Europe, Iceland and the Future of Capitalism”.
RNH will also support various initiatives on the Internet and in publishing, in cooperation with Almenna bokafelagid and others, trying to make the research undertaken at the Institute available and accessible, not only to scholars, but also to the general public, through multi-media and by other means. (Some dates here are subject to change.)