The Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters, founded in 1857, is an independent, learned society for the advancement of the natural sciences, humanities and social sciences. It represents Norwegian science vis-à-vis foreign academies and international science organizations.
The Academy has 219 ordinary seats for non-retired Norwegian members and 283 additional seats for foreign members. Members are divided into a science class and a humanities class, each subdivided into groups for the constituent disciplines.
The Academy – which is largely privately financed but which also receives a limited government grant and income through sponsorship programmes – initiates and supports research projects, awards grants, arranges scientific conferences, and publishes a yearbook (in Norwegian) and several scientific papers and conference reports, some in English.