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Research themes


A small institute with big ambition and an even bigger network: our Fryske Akademy is an inspiring exchange place for scientific knowledge. An exceptional 'research oasis' where, by staff and guests, open science with impact is practised. As a research institute emerging from society, we have a privileged position, which we make the most of. We do this from the conviction that we can best serve the mienskip by conducting research at a high academic level.

The Frisian case is our unique object of study. From regional to international, we are known for our expertise and interdisciplinary approach. What distinguishes us is the combination of fundamental and applied research, of linguistic, social science, historical research methods, of data analysis and digital humanities.

The Fryske Akademy focuses on Frisian, multilingual society, regional history in an international perspective, minority languages and cultures and the development of digital infrastructures - preferably in a cross-disciplinary and comparative perspective. With multidisciplinary research, the Fryske Akademy makes innovative contributions to the international scientific discourse, contributes to the academic climate in Leeuwarden and Fryslân, and generates inspiring fundamental and applicable knowledge for and about society.

The Mercator European Research Centre - part of the Fryske Akademy - focuses on researching, disseminating and applying knowledge in the field of multilingualism, individually and in society, and language learning, in formal and informal settings. Mercator's starting point is in the field of small and minority languages (native languages, but also migrant languages).


Multilingualism and language learning

Research into the social and individual aspects of multilingualism, with a focus on language minorities.

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Language description and standardisation

Description of the Frisian language today and in the past, covering the development of digital tools for researchers and language users.

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Synchrony and diachrony in language

Research into the Frisian language now and in the past, and into the changes and mutual influence of the language varieties spoken in Friesland.

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Power, property, and territory in Friesland

Research into the long-term development of the property and power balances in the Frisian area between Vlie and Eems.

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Medieval legal traditions

Comparative research into European medieval legal traditions, focusing specifically on Frisian medieval law.

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Culture in early modern Friesland

An analysis of the political and religious changes that occurred in Friesland between 1450 and 1800, and the Frisian identity that was the result.

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Economic clusters

Regional historical research into the economic development and economic policies in Friesland since 1870.

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