Who is Ragnvald?

Ragnvald Larsen

My full name is Ragnvald Larsen. I started my journey towards being a geographer way back in 1992. I had been working as a localizer (translator) with the Microsoft Worldwide Product Group in Dublin Ireland for a little over four months and was flying back to Norway for holidays. I really do not know what was so special about the landscape folding out beneath me. It could be that I had not seen my family for four months, it could be the green hills, the lazy roads along the hillsides, the very nice weather – or a combination. It made me think about geography and how it all connects – or doesn’t. I thought about why things were the way they were – in Norway and in other countries. And I thought, naively maybe, that combining computer science with geography wasn’t such a bad idea. It was a very good idea – as it turned out a great one!

I had a great time studying – while trying to contribute to systems and organizations which I felt were relevant for the society I was part of. It took some time… I was a member of the board of directors for the local (TT)and national hikers association (DNT) for a full ten years combined. Together with fellow idealists I developed SHERPA – a hiking information system. I used months and months and months on that system 🙂 In between I had to work as well. Studying does not come cheap – particularly not when the years pass by in flashes. Finally – in 2001 I received my masters degree in geography.

I worked part time at the university until 2004 when I got a job with FK Norway. The position was coordinated with Dept of Biology with NTNU. My desk was with Tanzania Wildlife Research Institute in Arusha, Tanzania.

I currently work with spatial data at the Norwegian Environment Agency (formerly the Directorate for nature management) and has done so for well over six years now. Much of my work is concentrated on development cooperation projects. I am currently active in projects in Tanzania, Uganda and Ghana. My tools are mainly open source based as they seem to fit in with the requirements for our development cooperation partners in a better way than many of the commercial tools. I contribute to building national level environmental data management systems and supporting formal and social contracts between stakeholders.

You can find more information about me here:

These days I publish my code on Github:

Other sites where I on occasion write articles:

All postings on this page, and the other ones, reflect my personal opinions and should not be associated with any organizations.

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