Dear Colleagues,

Following a very successful Third Polar Data Forum held in Helsinki, Finland in late 2019, we are pleased to announce that the Fourth Polar Data Forum will be co-hosted by the Royal Belgian institute of Natural Sciences and the European Polar Board (EPB) at the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO) in The Hague (NL) and online from September 20th to 24th, 2021. This event will be co-located with the Second Southern Ocean Regional Workshop for the UN Ocean Decade and Hackathon and focus on the polar oceans.  

The meeting will be co-organized with regional partners including the Southern Ocean Observing System, Standing Committee on Antarctic Data Management, the World Data System, EuroGOOS, and many other organizations engaged in polar data management.

Initial steering and organizing committees have been formed and will be expanded in the coming weeks.  If you are interested in participating, please reply directly to us.  A website with detailed information is being developed and we will notify you through this list and other channels when the site is published.  A call for abstracts will be released in mid-May, 2021 with the submission deadline in mid-June.  Notification of acceptance will be provided to authors in mid-July.

Based on previous meetings and workshops this iteration of the Polar Data Forum will combine a two  day conference style meeting (23, 24, September) in support of information exchange, with the remainder of the week using a "hackathon" approach that will build on the development work done in previous meetings and workshops (20-22, September).

Preliminary list of themes:

Knowledge mobilization and decision making

Co-production of data, information and knowledge

All aspects of interoperability

FAIR data for the polar regions

Federated Search and

Vocabularies and formal semantics

Data policy

Data management for modellers and remote sensing communities 

Data management for polar observing assets logistical information

Mapping data flows into international data aggregation efforts

Barriers to data sharing / User Requirements

Biogeochemical data management

New ships and real-time data in low connectivity locations

Kind regards,

Pip Bricher 

Erik Buch 

Annemie Janssen 

Jonathon Kool

Jenn Parrott

Karen Payne (co-chair) 

Peter Pulsifer (co-chair) 

Renuka Badhe

Anton Van de Putte


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