Geir Lundestad (born in 1945) is a Norwegian historian and present Director of the Norwegian Nobel Institute and Professor of the University of Oslo. Lundestad was born in Sulitjelma, a mining community in Northern Norway, and raised in Bodø.
Lundestad is one of Norway's best known historians. His field is contemporary history, with a focus on US relations to Western Europe during the Cold War. His most renowned article, "Empire by invitation," describes Western-Europe's attempts to attach the US to a stable commitment to West-European security against the Soviet Union in the late 1940s.
He received his MA (Cand.philol.) in history from the University of Oslo in 1970, PhD from the University of Tromsø in 1976. Lundestad has been Director of the Norwegian Nobel Institute in Oslo and Secretary of the Norwegian Nobel Committee since 1990.
Lundestad held positions at the University of Tromsø from 1974: Associate Professor of History, Professor of American Civilization 1979-88, Professor of History 1988-90. He has also been a research fellow at Harvard University (1978-79, 1983) and at the Woodrow Wilson Center in Washington, D.C. (1988-89). While being the Director of the Nobel Institute, Lundestad is also Adjunct Professor of International History at the University of Oslo. He has also spoken to London School of Economics students on several occasions.
His main publications are: The American Non-Policy Towards Eastern Europe 1943-1947 (1975), America, Scandinavia and the Cold War 1945-1949 (1980), East, West, North, South. Major Developments in International Politics since 1945. (First Norwegian Edition in 1985, later revised, Fifth Edition 2004), "Empire" by integration: the United States and European integration 1945-1997 (1998).
In academic circles, Lundestad is known for his humor and direct statements, a characteristic Lundestad attributes to his family ties in Northern Norway.
Geir Lundestad has attended the Bilderberg meetings.