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Nordic Council

Last modified: 2005-09-02 by phil nelson
Keywords: nordic council | swan | scandinavia | europe | denmark | finland | iceland | norway | sweden | international organization |
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[Flag of the Nordic Council] image by Jan Oskar Engene, 10 August 1996

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Description of the Flag

I found in a book a flag for the Nordic council which is white with five white stylized swans on a blue disc.
Pascal Vagnat, 22 January 1996

The Nordic Council logo is put on a white filed. The logo is supposed to be five swans. Željko mentioned stamps commemorating the Nordic Council having five natural-looking swans. This was an early symbol of Nordic cooperation, but I do not know whether it was official in any way. I suppose the swans flying together in formation represented the cooperation between the countries, all heading in the same direction. I don't know when the flag was adopted, or what the official proportions are. I used 2:3 for the image.
Jan Oskar Engene, 10 August 1996

Background and Use of the Symbol

The swan - The official symbol of Nordic cooperation

The swan with eight wing feathers was adopted as the official symbol of the Nordic Council and the Nordic Council of Ministers in November 1984. The symbol represents the five Nordic countries, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden, and the three self-governing territories of the Faeroe Islands, Greenland and Aland. The swan was designed by Finnish artist Kyösti Varis. The symbol was used officially for the first time at the session of the Nordic Council in Reykjavik in March 1985.

The swan is found on all kinds of official printed matter of the Nordic Council and the Nordic Council of Ministers, ranging from letter-paper and envelopes to brochures and publications. The swan is also used by the official Nordic institutions and organs of cooperation.

The Nordic Council and the Nordic Council of Ministers have decided on guidelines for the use of the symbol. These guidelines determine what the symbol looks like, and in what circumstances it may be used. This folder contains these guidelines.

Guidelines for the symbol of the Nordic Council and the Nordic Council of Ministers

§ 1 Definition
By the Nordic symbol is meant the emblem that shall symbolize the official Nordic cooperation, and which the Nordic Council/ Nordic Council of Ministers has announced through WIPO.

§ 2 Description of the Nordic symbol
The Nordic symbol is a white swan with 8 wingspans on a marine blue, circular field (Color: Pantone Reflex Blue C). If needed, the symbol may also be used in other marine blue colors (approximating Pantone Reflex Blue C) or in black.

§ 3 Legal protection
The Nordic symbol is legally protected according to the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property Art. 6 ter. The Nordic Council may enter into agreement with the designer as to eventual changes in the symbol.

§ 4 Who may use the symbol
The Nordic Council, the Nordic Council of Ministers and common Nordic institutions that are wholly or partly funded over the budget of the Nordic Council of Ministers have the right to use the Nordic symbol. Unless there is agreement from the artist that has the copyright to the symbol, it must not be used in other colors and/or with a different shape from that described in § 2.

§ 5 Use of the symbol by others
Without permission, the symbol must not be used by others than those described in § 4. Permission to use the Nordic symbol may normally only be granted to others that are engaged in ideal work or activity, whose aims are within the frame of the goals of the official Nordic cooperation. The symbol must not, as a main rule, be used as part of commercial activity by others than the Nordic Council and the Nordic Council of Ministers.

§ 6 Procedures
Institutions mentioned in § 4 that want to use the symbol in different colors or shapes than mentioned in § 2, must apply for permission. Others than those mentioned in § 4, that wish to use the Nordic symbol, must apply for permission. With applications shall be enclosed the statutes of the activities and an overview of past and future activities. The Secretary of the Presidium decides on the application as mentioned in section 1 and 2 of this article, on behalf of the Nordic Council. Before decision is made, an application may be submitted to the Secretary General of the Nordic Council of Ministers for his opinion.

§ 7 Complaints
The President of the Nordic Council decides on any complaints concerning the decisions made by the Secretary of the Presidium

Mark Sensen and Jan Oskar Engene, 11 March 1998