Meet Lukas Lind – Master’s student in Sea and Society
During his internship at the Ministry of the Environment, Lukas LInd participated in the negotiations that led to a new international agreement on biodiversity at COP15. The internship gave him an awareness of the political machinery from the inside.
What are you doing right now?
“Right now I am doing my master's thesis where I study the motivations of volunteer beach cleaners. I came up with the idea last summer when I myself was cleaning beaches in Northern Norway. It's hard to take in how much plastic and other waste materials are found on our coasts, and also the impact it has on the marine ecosystems, as well as our sense of places. Beach cleaners do invaluable work for the environment.”
Why did you want to study Sea and Society?
“I’ve always had an interest in marine issues, and I actually started a bachelor's degree in marine science but soon realised that it wasn’t for me. Instead, I took a bachelor's degree in geography. When I understood that the master’s programme in Sea and Society was an interdisciplinary education focused on marine issues from several perspectives, I got interested. Interdisciplinary studies suit me very well, and I’m very happy with my choice of programme. The fact that the programme attracts many international students was also a bonus.
What’s it like to study the programme?
“I’ve had a very positive experience of the programme. It was an intense start, where we had smaller group exercises almost every afternoon, something you understand in retrospect how important it was. You get to know your classmates, and you get an insight into how they reason based on their previous study backgrounds. Learning to think interdisciplinary and from different perspectives is difficult at first, but you get much in return. Very much appreciated is also the fact that you have an internship opportunity during the second year.
Where did you do your internship?
“I did my internship at the Ministry of Environment, which is now called the Ministry of Climate and Enterprise. My internship period was very interesting, with change of governments, start of a new ministry, and the upcoming EU presidency. So it was very busy all the time. During the internship, I was part of the Swedish delegation to the fifteenth meeting of the parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity, CBD COP15, which took place in December in Montreal. I was also lucky enough to go to Brussels and participate in an EU meeting during the Swedish presidency.
What did you learn during your internship?
“Incredibly much! I got an awareness of the political machinery from the inside, and I learnt that it’s not always as simple as one might think. The path from proposal to decision is very long and takes time. I also got to see what international negotiations look like, and how important it is to reach an agreement. After long negotiations, a new global agreement was finally reached at COP15, which was very exciting to see."
“I really recommend everyone to do an internship during their studies. In addition to getting a network in the job market, it can also make you more aware of what you want to work with in the future, or don't want to work with. Then it's a lot of fun too!”
What tips do you have for students who want to study the programme?
“Go to all the classes and events that are organised! There are often many interesting guest lecturers and lecturers from different institutions, which shows the breadth that exists within the field. And you are guaranteed to get several new perspectives that you didn’t have before.”
What do you want to do after graduation?
“Right now, I haven't really thought that far. However, I will probably return to Norway this summer to work as beach cleaner for a period. To work at an authority, or the Swedish Government Office, would be a lot of fun, but that’s probably more in the future. Another dream is to find a job in slightly more southern latitudes with less snow.”