Special adviser (Norway)

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A special adviser (Norwegian: spesialrådgiver) is a high-ranking civil servant in the Norwegian central government departments. They typically advise government ministers and have a more independent position than other civil servants. Although not part of the ordinary hierarchy and with no set duties, they are considered on pair with the directors-general (Norwegian: ekspedisjonssjefer) in the government departments. They are often given tasks such as representing Norway vis-à-vis various international organizations or giving policy advice in their areas of expertise.

There is only a small number of special advisers, and the title is often given to former top executives of government departments or agencies who go on to work in a government ministry. Special advisers are the single most highly paid category in the government administration and some earn more than the Prime Minister.[1] For example, Jonas Gahr Støre, Kai Eide, Bjørn Tore Godal, Erik Solheim, Georg Fredrik Rieber-Mohn, Ann-Marit Sæbønes, Harald Rensvik, Anne Kari Lande Hasle, Janne Kristiansen, Tore Eriksen, Hans Brattskar, and Joakim Lystad are or have been special advisers in the Norwegian central government.

In some respects, they are similar to special advisers in the UK government, with the exception that they are permanent civil servants rather than political appointees.