Report on the Arctic in Rapid Transition (ART) Initiation Workshop, 7-9 November 2009, International Arctic Research Center (IARC) at the University of Alaska at Fairbanks
-Contributed by Carolyn Wegner
On 7-9 November, the ART Initiation Workshop was held in Fairbanks, Alaska. 58 scientists from 9 countries participated in the workshop which was hosted by the International Arctic Research Center at the University of Fairbanks. The workshop was unique in that it was entirely planned by early career scientists and over half of the participants were early career scientists or students. It was sponsored by AOSB/IASC, the US NSF, the Norwegian Research Council, the Department of Fisheries and Oceans Canada, the Association of Polar Early Career Scientists, and IFM-GEOMAR.
The Arctic in Rapid Transition Initiative is a proposed integrative, multi-disciplinary, long-term pan-Arctic program to study changes and feedbacks with respect to physical characteristics and biogeochemical cycles of the Arctic Ocean and its biological productive capacity. The ART Initiative developed out of the synthesis of the several resulting ICARP II (Second International Conference on Arctic Research Planning) science plans specific to the marine environment. This process has been driven by the early career scientists of the ICARP II Marine Roundtable.
Workshop discussions and reports will be used to develop a science and implementation plan that integrates, updates, and develops priorities for Arctic Marine Science over the next decade. Our focus within the ART Initiative will be to bridge gaps in knowledge not only across disciplinary boundaries (e.g., biology, geochemistry, geology, meteorology, physical oceanography), but also across geographic (e.g., international boundaries, shelves, margins, and the central Arctic Ocean) and temporal boundaries (e.g., paleo/geologic records, current process observations, and future modeling studies). This approach of the ART Initiative will provide a means to better understand and predict change, particularly the consequences for biological productivity, and ultimate responses in the Arctic Ocean system.
The next steps will be to finalize the ART science plan and to present it to the Arctic Ocean Science Board during the Arctic Science Summit Week 2010 in Greenland.