Place names and naming traditions play a large role in Icelandic cultural heritage. Many place names have remained unchanged since the island was settled.
The institute’s Archive of Icelandic Place Names indexes the names of almost all farms in Iceland in addition to the names of highland pastures and fishing waters, among other place names.
Efforts are currently underway to create an online database, nafnið.is, which will facilitate accessibility to the archive for scholars and the public alike. Rannís, the Icelandic Center for Research, recently awarded a grant to support the project with work commencing in 2019.
A portion of the archive is currently accessible through Sarpur, the database for Icelandic cultural history (Icelandic).