Sigurd Oland Nedrelid works as a special adviser at the Agency for Climate, City of Oslo.
Describe your job
My job is to develop new, smart climate-friendly solutions, so that Oslo achieves the goal of becoming virtually emission-free by 2030. We are an expert resource, but also a driving force for climate change. I attend many meetings with the business community, research communities, organizations and other public authorities in order to forward our aims.
The areas I work with include cycling, traffic reduction, and smarter, more climate-friendly goods transport. My work also includes public information initiatives such as films and social media campaigns to encourage people to make climate-friendly choices in their daily transport. I work on the marketing of incentive schemes, and with the newly completed Climate House that is located at the Natural History Museum, Tøyen.
What is the most exciting thing about your job?
I really enjoy being involved in developing climate policy for a large municipality like Oslo, where climate policy takes such a high priority. I feel like I am making a change and that things are moving forward, even though our goals are very ambitious.
Another thing I like is that the work is varied. I can work on writing a screenplay one day, and on analysing travel patterns in the Oslo region the next. Since work on the climate is happening in all parts of society, I also have to familiarise myself with very different issues and understand different industries. I enjoy learning in this way, and increasing my grasp over much of the positive climate work that is actually going on.
How do you use your educational background at work?
I get good use for the methodological knowledge and analytical skills I learned during my studies. It is crucial to be able to understand the complexities in a variety of cases, and to communicate knowledge and data. Besides, I think we Human Geographers are good at seeing the small details, "place matters" and all that. Having such “established” qualitative understanding in your toolkit is brings substance to your work..
What is a typical day at work?
A typical day at work consists of attending meetings, writing documents and sending emails. Sometimes I attend conferences and seminars. But don't let that scare you, as that's how things are done in the community!
How did you get the job?
I probably got the job due to the experience I have from my time at “Car free city life in Oslo” (Bilfritt byliv), both from communication work and with mobility - how people and goods get around the city. In addition, I think the journalism experience I gained while still a student helped me.
What are your best tips to students who are looking for your type of job?
It's always smart to do things parallel to your studies, whether it's paid or volunteer work. Being able to document work with communication, or with coordinating and managing projects, I think is a huge advantage. Besides, it might be wise to angle your master into a field of work that you are engaged in and can see yourself working with. You also have to put yourself forward and throw yourself into new challenges. We master graduates have a pretty good base from Blindern, which enables us to analyse and understand various issues, including those of which we do not have much previous knowledge.