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Arctic Science Events in Canada and Beyond

– Compiled by Helen Joseph, CMOS Arctic SIG and HCJ Consulting –

The Arctic is experiencing unprecedented change of its ocean and terrestrial ice, permafrost and ecosystems under the triple pressures of climate change, industrialization and modernization. The impacts of these pressures can be seen on food and energy security, shipping, sovereignty, northern community health and well-being, sustainable development and resource exploitation. All these issues have brought the Arctic to the forefront of national and international agendas.

Circumpolar nations face an increased demand to enhance the observational capacity and understanding of this region to ensure that the best information possible is available to support evidence-based policy and decision-making. Science and knowledge mobilization play a pivotal role in this process.

Building on the success of its previous Annual Scientific Meetings, the ArcticNet Network of Centres of Excellence and its national and international partners welcomed the international Arctic research community to the International Arctic Change 2017 Conference in, Québec, Canada from December 11 – 15, 2017.

With over 1500 participants, the Arctic Change 2017 conference was one of the largest trans-sectoral international Arctic research conferences ever held in Canada. The conference brought together leading Arctic researchers, graduate students, Northern community representatives, government and industry partners and stakeholders from all fields. As in previous years, the CMOS Arctic Special Interest Group assisted ArcticNet in judging the over 150 student marine science posters.

As we move into the coming year, 2018, there will continue to be a global focus on the changes occurring in the global Arctic. Listed below are a few highlighted events in the first six months of 2018 but please refer to the ARCUS website ( for an up-to-date listing of Arctic science events.

Fifth International Symposium on Arctic Research (ISAR-5)

Tokyo, Japan, January 15 – 18, 2018
For more information:

This symposium entitled “The Changing Arctic and its Regional to Global Impact: From Information to Knowledge and Action” will be comprised of discussions on environmental changes in the Arctic and their regional and global implications. Additional international scientific collaboration is being sought in this area by gathering, synthesizing, and sharing information related to these changes occurring in the Arctic. Arctic change has impacts on the global climate, as well as ecosystems and human societies in higher-middle latitudes. A better understanding of these processes is needed so that improved information can be given to society and stakeholders, particularly decision makers. Special emphasis will be placed on the fields of the social sciences and humanities, which have not been included in previous ISARs.

The general sessions include the fields of atmosphere; ocean and sea ice; rivers, lakes, permafrost and snow cover; ice sheets, glaciers and ice cores; terrestrial ecosystems; marine ecosystems; geospace; policies and economy; and, social and cultural dimensions.

Arctic Frontiers 2018

Tromso, Norway, January 21 – 26, 2018
For more information:

In 2018, the Arctic Frontiers Policy program will have five main sessions with the following tentative working titles: State of the Arctic, Technology and connectivity, Resilient Arctic societies and business development, Healthy and productive oceans, Industry and environment. The Arctic Frontiers Science program will address the following topics: Aquaculture in the High North in times of change; the New Arctic in the Global Context; Resilient Arctic Societies and Industrial Development; and Circumpolar Safety, Search and Rescue Collaboration.

Northern Lights 2018

Ottawa, Canada, January 28 – February 3, 2018
For more information:

Northern Lights is a biannual event that was created to showcase Canada’s unique northern arts, culture and heritage, and strengthen partnerships between Canada’s northern and southern key businesses and government stakeholders.

CMOS Congress

Halifax, Canada, June 10 – 14, 2018
For more information:

The CMOS Arctic Special Interest Group is working with the 2018 Scientific Program Committee to ensure that Arctic science is profiled at the Congress, including scientific sessions on the Year of Polar Prediction and The Changing Arctic from the Perspective of its Oceanography, Meteorology, Interdisciplinary Studies and Policy Implications.

POLAR 2018 – A joint SCAR, ISAC and ASSW conference

Davos, Switzerland, June 15 – 26, 2018
For more information:

POLAR 2018 is a joint event from the Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research (SCAR) and the International Arctic Science Committee (IASC). The SCAR meetings, the Arctic Science Summit Week and the Open Science Conference (OSC) will take place in Switzerland.

The goal of POLAR 2018 is to bring together excellent research from both poles, as well as from high altitude areas, focusing on the similar challenges those regions face. The program features 65 different sessions, structured into 12 categories. In addition to the parallel sessions, central elements of the OSC will be keynote presentations, mini-symposia, extended poster sessions, and exhibitions. The annual COMNAP symposium will be held during the OSC, as well as a plenary lecture from the 2018 Arctic Observing Summit as an opening to this biennial summit immediately after the OSC.

Arctic Observing Summit 2018

Davos, Switzerland, June 24-26, 2018
More information:

The Arctic Observing Summit (AOS) is a high-level biennial summit that provides a platform to address urgent and broadly recognized needs of Arctic observing across all components of the Arctic system. AOS 2018 will focus on pressing issues in the implementation and support of sustained observations that can be addressed through a business-case lens. To that end, short submissions are requested that address any and all aspects of the overarching theme and sub-themes.

ArcticNet Annual Science Meeting

Ottawa, Canada, December 10 – 14, 2018
For more information:

Details will be forthcoming over the coming months.

Arctic Science Events, Arctic SIG, ArcticNet, Helen Joseph

For previous issues go to the Archives page on the main CMOS site.