The Retrospective Methods Network provides a framework within which new networks have emerged with more concentrated focus.
Daughter Networks

The Austmarr Network

The Austmarr Network is an international, interdisciplinary network of scholars investigating historical and prehistoric contacts among peoples in the circum-Baltic region. This Network's aim is to reconstruct the development of the Baltic Sea region, viewed as a trans-ethnic cultural area that played a central role in the emergence of modern Germanic, Slavic, Finnic and Sámi ethnicities. Beginning in 2011, the Austmarr Network has held annual symposia the bring together both established members of the Network and other scholars and researchers of shared interests for fruitful discussion, as well as organizing publications. More information on activities, events and publications can be found on the Network's website.

The Old Norse Folklorists Network

The Old Norse Folklorists Network was founded in 2010 by a group of scholars striving to bring Folklore Studies and Old Norse Philology back into dialogue after their long separation across the second half of the 20th century. The Network has a methodological emphasis with concern for the classic questions of how to assess potential relationships between evidence in sagas, poetry and literature and folklore documented centuries later, especially in the 19th and 20th centuries. The Network's concerns extend to questions of folklore contemporary to the medieval sources and in their background, and the methodological implications that a background in folklore may have for how these sources are handled in research. The Old Norse Folklorists Network has organized multidisciplinary workshops built on an innovative strategy, now known as the Tartu model, as well as international conferences and publications. More information is available the Network's website.

The Viking Age in Finland Project

The Viikinkiaika Suomessa – Viking Age in Finland (VAF) project emerged independently of the Retrospective Methods Network and became connected with it through common concerns. The VAF is a collaborative interdisciplinary research project which undertakes to explore and assess the significance of the Viking Age for Finno-Karelian cultures and Finno-Karelian cultural areas. The project has involved the development of methods for facilitating cross-disciplinary discussion and the production of truly interdisciplinary syntheses in research. The VAF organized public seminar-workshops beginning from 2011 as well as virtual workshops for the development of publications.

Published volumes

The Feminine in Old Norse Mythology and Folklore (expected 2022 or 2023), edited by Tommy Kuusela, Turnhout: Brepols

Crossing Disciplinary Boundaries in Studies of the Viking Age (expected 2022), edited by Daniel Sävborg, Turnhout: Brepols

Folklore and Old Norse Mythology, edited by Frog and Joonas Ahola, FF Communications 323, Helsinki: Kalevala Society

Interdisciplinary and Comparative Methodologies: Exploring Circum-Baltic Cultures and Beyond (2019), a special issue of RMN Newsletter (no. 14), edited by Frog, Joonas Ahola and Kendra Willson

Contacts and Networks in the Circum-Baltic Region: Austmarr as a Northern Mare nostrum, ca. 500–1500 AD (2019), edited by Maths Bertell, Frog and Kendra Willson, Amsterdam: University of Amsterdam Press

Supernatural Encounters in Old Norse Literature and Tradition (2018, forthcoming), edited by Daniel Sävborg and Karen Bek-Pedersen, Borders, Boundaries and Landscapes 1, Turnhout: Brepols

The Ecology of Metre (2015/2016), a special issue of RMN Newsletter (no. 11), edited by Ilya V. Sverdlov and Frog

Between Text and Practice: Mythology, Religion and Research (2015), a special issue of RMN Newsletter (no. 10), edited by Frog and Karina Lukin

New Focus on Retrospective Methods: Resuming Methodological Discussions: Case Studies from Northern Europe (2014), edited by Eldar Heide and Karen Bek-Pedersen, Folklore Fellows' Communications 307, Helsinki: Academia Scientiarum Fennica

The Viking Age in Åland: Insights into Identity and Remnants of Culture (2014), edited by Joonas Ahola, Frog and Jenni Lucenius, Annales Academiae Scientiarum Fennicae Humaniora 372, Helsinki: Academia Scientiarum Fennica

Folklore In Old Norse Old Norse In Folklore (2014), edited by Daniel Sävborg and Karen Bek-Pedersen, Nordistica Tartuensia No 20, Tartu: University of Tartu Press

Fibula, Fabula, Fact – The Viking Age in Finland (2014), edited by Joonas Ahola and Frog with Clive Tolley, Studia Fennica Historica 18, Helsinki: Finnish Literature Society

Limited Sources, Boundless Possibilities: Textual Scholarship and the Challenges of Oral and Written Texts (2013), a special issue of RMN Newsletter (no. 7), edited by Karina Lukin, Frog and Sakari Katajamaki

Approaching Methodology (2012), special issue of RMN Newsletter (no. 4), edited by Frog and Pauliina Latvala; revised second edition (2013) edited in collaboration with Helen F. Leslie and with an introduction by Ulrika Wolf-Knuts, Annales Academiae Scientiarum Fennicae Humaniora 368, Helsinki: Academia Scientiarum Fennica


Austmarr X.2: "European Connections: Cultural Transfer to and from the Baltic Sea Region", held on 12 November 2021 virtually from Bonn, Germany

Austmarr X.1: "European Connections: Cultural Transfer to and from the Baltic Sea Region", held on 6 November 2020 virtually from Bonn, Germany

Austmarr IX: "Genius loci in the Prehistory of the Baltic Sea Region", held on 29–30 May 2019 in Klaipeda, Lithuania

Austmarr VIII: "The Viking Age Baltic Sea Region and the Islamic World", held on 31 May – 1 June 2018 in Södertörn, Sweden

Austmarr VII: "Crossing Disciplinary Borders in Viking Age Studies: Problems, Challenges and Solutions: The 7th Austmarr Symposium", held on 1–3 December 2017 in Tartu, Estonia

"Folklore and Old Norse Mythology" (2017 Aarhus Mythology Conference), held on 27-28 November 2017 in Helsinki, Finland

Austmarr VI: the symposium "Religion – Language – Practice", held on 5 December 2016, and the "Workshop on Late Iron Age Mortuary Behaviours", on 6 December 2016, both in Helsinki, Finland

"Mythology, Discourse, and Authority: Retrospective Methods in Cultural Research: A Symposium and Graduate Workshop", held on 22-23 November 2016 in Tartu, Estonia

Old Norse Folklorists Network 4th Symposium: "The Ontology of Supernatural Encounters in Old Norse Literature and Scandinavian Folklore", held on 10-12 December 2015 in Tartu, Estonia

Austmarr V: "No One Is an Island: Islands in the Baltic Sea 500–1500 AD: Characteristics and Networks in an Interdisciplinary Perspective", held on 15-16 October 2015 in Visby, Gotland

Austmarr IV: "The Plurality of Religions and Religious Change around the Baltic Sea, 500-1300: Methodological Challenges for Multidisciplinary Data", held on 4-5 December 2014 in Sundsvall, Sweden

Old Norse Folklorists Network 3rd Symposium: "Sagas, Legends and Trolls: The Supernatural from Early Modern back to Old Norse Tradition", held on 12-14 June 2014 in Tartu, Estonia

Austmarr stream at the joint conference of The Association for the Advancement of Baltic Studies (AABS) and The Society for the Advancement of Scandinavian Study (SASS): "Baltic and Scandinavian Studies", held on 13-15 March 2014 in New Haven, Connecticut, U.S.A.

Austmarr III: “Historical Infrastructure of the Baltic Sea: Ways, Reasons and Consequences: Third Meeting of the Austmarr Network”, held on 5-6 April 2013 in Härnösand, Sweden

Old Norse Folklorists Network 2nd Symposium: "The Encounter with the Otherworld in Bárðar saga Snæfellsáss", held on 29 November - 1 December 2012 in Tartu, Estonia

The Viking Age in Finland III: "Identity and Identification and the Viking Age in Finland (with Special Emphasis on the Åland Islands)", held on 3-4 September 2012 in Mariehamn, Åland

Austmarr II: "Transcultural Contacts in the Circum-Baltic Area: 2nd Meeting of the Austmarr Network", held on 8-10 June 2012 in Helsinki, Finland

Old Norse Folklorists' Network 1st Symposium: "Encounters with Trolls in Icelandic Sagas and Swedish Folk Belief", held on 1-3 December 2011 in Tartu, Estonia

The Viking Age in Finland II: "Viikinkiaika Suomessa: Kulttuurienväliset yhteydet ja niiden merkitys Suomessa viikinkiajalla – Cross-Cultural Contacts and Their Significance in Finland in the Viking Age", held on 11-12 November 2011 in Helsinki, Finland

The Viking Age in Finland I: "Suomen viikinkiajan määrittely eri tieteenalojen lähestymistapojen valossa – The Viking Age in Finland Defined in the Light of the Approaches of Different Disciplines", held on 28-29 April 2011 in Helsinki, Finland

Austmarr I: "Cultural Exchanges across the Baltic Sea in the Middle Ages, Symposium and Workshop: First Meeting of the Austmarr Network", held on 14–15 April 2011 in Tartu, Estonia

"New Focus on Retrospective Methods", held on 13-14 September 2010 in Bergen, Norway