Gender-related and sexual harassment and violence (hereinafter referred to as violations) is prohibited by employees and students of the Iceland University of the Arts (IUA) and is prohibited without limitation in all activities in the school. Harassment and violence will not be silenced or tolerated under any circumstances.

The objective

The objective of the procedure is to ensure that resources are available to parties who consider themselves to be violated.

The specified breaches are prohibited in the communication of staff and students, employees or students internally, and in relations between employees or students of the Iceland University of the Arts with individuals outside of the University, provided that the communication takes place in connection with the activities of The Iceland University of Arts.


Gender-related harassment is a behaviour regarding the sex or gender of the sufferer, it is un-welcome to the person concerned and has the purpose or effect of offending the person and creating conditions that are threatening, hostile, humiliating, or offensive to the person.

Sexual harassment is any sexual behaviour that is beyond the reach of the victim and has the purpose or effect of offending the person, especially when behaviour leads to threatening, hostile, humiliating, or offensive circumstances. Behaviour can be verbal, symbolic, digital and/or physical.

Gender-related violence is violence on the basis of gender which leads to, or could lead to, physical, sexual or psychological harm or suffering of the victims. Also threats of such behaviour are considered violence, constraint or arbitrary deprivation of liberty on the basis of gender, both in private and public, and gender-based violence.

Sexual violence is a violation described as punishable in XXII. section of the Penal Code No. 19/1940

Response team

The Executive Board of The Iceland University of the Arts appoints members for the sexual harassment response team and can request information on its activities. 

Gender equality should be ensured when appointing team members. If, in individual cases, there is doubt about the competence of a committee member, the person concerned steps down and another is appointed in his place. The definition of competence is in accordance with the Administrative Procedures Act. Team members are obliged to maintain confidentiality for any matters that may arise.

Team members come from outside the IUA and must have knowledge and experience in dealing with such matters. Announcements are made here and will be send to Íris Dögg Björnsdóttur that provides follow-up on cases.


If people considers themselves violated in any way by an employee or a student of the Iceland University of the Arts, the person is encouraged to report the unwelcome conduct as soon as possible to to one or both members of the response team.

If an employee or student within the Iceland University of the Arts has a reason to suspect or has knowledge of an offense by another employee or student of the IUA, the person concerned should put in a notification to one or both members of the response team.


The team shall investigate all notifications that are received, with respect and non-discrimination and deliver a conclusion as soon as possible. The actions taken in the proceedings are in consultation with the party violated pursuant according to the notification. 

Upon notification, the team shall invite the victim who reports a violation to a meeting with the response team. If a notification is received by a third party, the team shall invite the victim of suspected misbehaviour to a meeting and examine the position of that party towards the notification. The person who is the declared perpetrator of the violation must be summoned to the team and his/her position examined. The persons’ right to object to the alleged accusations should be specifically stated to him/her as well as being given the right to express his/her views.

The response team takes an informed decision based on the available information as to whether the matter will be taken for formal procedure. If there is a reasonable suspicion that a criminal offense has been committed, the team shall, in consultation with the victim, refer such cases to the police. If it is decided to refer a case to the police, the team shall refer the matter to the human resources manager for action but shall not proceed further with the case.

When a case is taken into formal procedure by the response team, the head of department of the concerned shall be notified of the team's decision and shall take measures regarding the study or working arrangements of those involved. It is prohibited to transfer the person who is considered to be the victim of the case to study/work unless he/she so wishes.

It is considered formal procedure when the matter is examined, taking in conversations with all parties, colleagues, co-workers and/or others who are familiar with the matter. The response team shall have full access to data that concerns the notification. Those who are alleged to be violated should be assisted by a specialist with expertise in the said offenses. If the victim wants to appeal the matter to the police, the team shall be of as much assistance as possible. If an offender decides at any stage of the case to appeal to the police, the team shall not proceed further. The team informs the head of the relevant department and the Rector of their findings in writing. If the team considers that there has been a violation, it shall submit a proposal to the relevant head of the relevant department and the Rector who, in consultation with the Human Resources Manager and/or the Educational Counsellor, should make decisions on further actions in the case. Decisions on further action in response to proposals from the team shall be taken in accordance with the laws and regulations applicable to the activities of the IUA. The Rector shall keep the team informed of the actions taken. All data processed in the case shall be preserved in the archives of the IUA, full confidentiality shall be observed against the parties to the case and all personally identifiable information about the victim shall be deleted, e.g. name, age and field of study, from the data.


Actions for violations may be:

  • Admonition.
  • Temporary suspension, should the individual not react upon the admonition.
  • Permanent suspension, should the individual not react upon the admonition.
  • Temporary or permanent suspension without notice.

The response is determined by the Rector and leader of department/division of the staff member/student in question.


Form for announcements - announcements are send to Íris Dögg Björnsdóttur that provides follow-up on cases.