In Focus

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guns
In Focus

In Focus: Does Iceland Have a Gun Problem?

Two recent shootings in Reykjavík have put gun ownership in the spotlight, sparking conversations about how many semiautomatic weapons there are in Iceland, if they are too easy to obtain, and the ideology of those carrying and using these firearms. Iceland is renowned for its safety: it has topped the Global Peace Index for the […]

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Icelandic horses are a unique breed, bred in isolation in Iceland since settlement times.
Business

“Blood Farms” Documentary Shocks the Nation

Since the 1980s, horse farmers in Iceland have been able to gain extra income by extracting the hormone Equine Chorionic Gonadotropin (eCG) from their pregnant mares. This hormone exists in pregnant mares’ blood and can be removed and sold for hefty sums. To begin with, blood farming was a secondary practice on horse farms, but […]

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In Focus

In Focus: A String of House-Fire Deaths Has Sparked Calls For Fire Safety Reforms

Fatalities from house fires have been rare in Iceland, but over the past couple of years, there appears to be an uptick in fire-related deaths. After a shocking arson case in June last year, which resulted in three deaths, a national conversation commenced. Does Iceland have a fire prevention problem? What can be done to […]

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In Focus

In Focus: Iceland Named Top Global Pension System

Iceland regularly receives accolades for its breathtaking nature and peaceful society, but the country received a new title in 2021 – having the best pension system in the world. Global consulting firm Mercer compares the pension systems of 43 countries in its annual pension index, and Iceland came out on top. Iceland has the most […]

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In Focus: The National Hospital’s Persistent Problem of Patient Flow

The Icelandic healthcare system is a popular topic of discussion. One of the biggest government expenditures, there’s one thing the Icelandic public agrees on, left and right : healthcare costs should be paid by the government. Government expenditure towards the healthcare system amounted to more than 8% of the country’s GDP in 2020. How the […]

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In Focus: Icelandic Football Association Accused of Silencing Violence and Sexual Assault

Recently, national coverage of high-pro.file sexual assault cases gave second wind to the #metoo movement in Iceland, renewing discussion of the power imbalance between celebrities accused of sexual violence and their accusers. A few of the cases mentioned on social media allegedly involved famous footballers and voices calling for justice grew louder, putting pressure on […]

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In Focus

In Focus: Iceland’s Dairy Industry

There is a famous cow in Norse mythology named Auðhumla. According to myth, she played a key role in the creation of the world – milk from her udders fed the first giants and she freed the first god, Búri, by licking on a salt block. Iceland’s first settlers not only drank milk, they used […]

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Photo by Golli
In Focus

In Focus: Upcoming Parliamentary Elections

Icelanders will head to the voting booths on September 25, where individuals from the country’s various parties will vie for 63 seats from the country’s six constituencies: the Northwest (8), Northeast (10), South (10), Southwest (13), Reykjavík South (11), and Reykjavík North (11). The elections could mark the first time that women gain a majority […]

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Central Bank
In Focus

Muddying the Waters—the Debate Over Special Interest in Iceland

“By and large controlled by special interest.” In a recent interview with Stundin, Ásgeir Jónsson, Governor of Iceland’s Central Bank, stated that Iceland was “by and large, controlled by special interest” and that “quarrelling with them was no laughing matter.” Ásgeir’s comments were in part inspired by an ongoing dispute between the Central Bank and […]

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In Focus

In Focus: The Geology Of the Reykjanes Peninsula

If you’re anywhere near Reykjavík, you’ve most definitely felt an earthquake or two in the past weeks. Since Wednesday, February 24, an earthquake swarm has been rocking the southwest corner of Iceland with thousands of small to mid-sized earthquakes, the largest one measuring M5.7. At the time of writing, geology experts are certain that there’s […]

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In Focus

In Focus: Iceland’s Housing Market

For many years, Iceland’s housing market has been characterised by sharply rising prices. Many may have expected the COVID-19 pandemic and associated recession to change that trend, but throughout 2020, real estate prices continued to rise. Perhaps even more unexpected, considering those rising prices and a worse economic outlook, a record number of sales took […]

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In Focus

In Focus: Iceland’s Cabinet

Iceland is currently governed by Katrín Jakobsdóttir’s cabinet, made up of six men and five women from three different parties – the Left-Green Movement, the Independence Party, and the Progressive Party. All of the cabinet members also serve as members of parliament except Minister for the Environment and Natural Resources Guðmundur Ingi Guðbrandsson.

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