Aksel Braanen Sterri is a prominent Norwegian political scientist and philosopher, currently serving as a postdoctoral researcher in philosophy at Oslo Metropolitan University (OsloMet) and as the chief officer at the Centre for Long-Term Policy. His academic journey has seen him engage in research and teaching roles at prestigious institutions such as Harvard University and the University of Oxford.
Sterri holds a PhD in philosophy from the University of Oslo, where his dissertation focused on our moral obligations in emergency situations and how society should regulate market transactions when one party is vulnerable. His doctoral research included stints at Harvard University on a Fulbright scholarship under the guidance of Michael Sandel, and at the Oxford Uehiro Centre for Practical Ethics at the University of Oxford. He also holds a bachelor’s and master’s degree in political science from the University of Oslo, with his master’s thesis exploring the impact of the welfare state on individual happiness.
In the academic year 2010-2011, Sterri led the Student Parliament at the University of Oslo, marking his early engagement in leadership and academic governance. He has contributed to books and public discussions on various social and philosophical topics, including social democracy, power dynamics in Norwegian society, active euthanasia, and more. His public debates cover a wide range of issues from artificial intelligence and pandemic management to democracy, welfare state, active euthanasia, abortion, prostitution, organ transplantation, and animal welfare.
Sterri’s career also includes leadership roles outside academia. He has been the head of the think tank Progressiv and completed a trainee program in the Labour Party’s parliamentary group. From 2013, he was one of the editors of the Great Norwegian Encyclopedia, and from 2015, he worked as an editorial writer and commentator for the newspaper Dagbladet until he became a research fellow at the University of Oslo in 2017. His diverse experiences reflect a deep commitment to both academic research and active participation in public discourse, contributing significantly to societal debates in Norway.