The Crown Prince, who was accompanied by the Minister of Research and Higher Education, Tora Aasland, and the Minister of Trade and Industry, Trond Giske, had a diverse program specifically focusing on science and research, and on Norwegian trade and commercial interests in California.
The Crown Prince delivered the Norwegian opening address at the Transatlantic Science Week, which took place at the University of California, Berkeley, and at Stanford University. Celebrating its tenth anniversary this year, the Transatlantic Science Week is an important forum for politicians, researchers and leaders working within the fields of higher education, research, and innovation in the US and Norway. More than 350 people participated, making this year's Science Week an unquestionable success.
When in Berkeley, the Crown Prince had an enjoyable coffee session with Norwegian exchange students. Since UC Berkeley is the Crown Prince's Alma Mater, it was particularly interesting for the students to share their experiences with him. The same day, the Crown Prince also accepted the 2009 Alumni of the Year Award from Berkeley's International House, where he stayed during his studies.
In addition to participating at the Transatlantic Science Week, Crown Prince Haakon opened Innovation Norway's new Innovation House in Palo Alto and talked to entrepreneurs from Norwegian companies in Silicon Valley. Furthermore, he met with Snøhetta, an acclaimed Norwegian architectural firm responsible for designing the new expansion of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA), and with representatives from the Norwegian IT company Meltwater Group. The Crown Prince also got the opportunity to visit Loral Space Systems, which was recently selected to build Telenor's Thor 7 satellite.