The present special issue of WEAR contains selected papers from the 16th Nordic symposium on Tribology, NORDTRIB 2014, which was held in Denmark on June 10 – 13, 2014. The symposium was organised by Lars Pleth Nielsen, Lone Elly Larsen and Sascha Louring from the Tribology Centre, Danish Technological Institute, Svend S. Eskildsen, MAN Diesel A/S and Ion Marius Sivebaek, Technical University of Denmark and Novo Nordisk A/S. More than hundred and forty delegates from more than 20 countries could beside several social events enjoy 114 oral pre- sentations at the symposium, which took place at the Scandina- vian Congress Center, in the center of Aarhus the second largest city in Denmark. NORDTRIB 2014 covered numerous aspects on friction, wear and lubrication, and their practical and industrial applications, with presentations on environmental aspects of tribology, tribo- testing, tribology in metal working, materials tribology, tribology of machine elements, contact mechanics, lubricants and lubrica- tion, surface engineering, polymers and biotribology. The papers in this special issue of WEAR were selected from the symposium presentations by the Nordic Advisory Board of NORDTRIB and have subsequently undergone a normal peer review process. In addition to the papers presented in this journal, some papers were selected for publication in Journal of Engineering Tribology, Tribology International as well as the Finnish Journal of Tribology. The organising committee wishes to express their appreciation to all the authors and delegates who made NORDTRIB 2014 a success. The guest editors also want to acknowledge all the reviewers.