The Arctic Council 2011 Nuuk declaration decides that the Arctic Council through AMAP appoints the chair of SAON. At their meeting this week, the AMAP WG appointed Thorsteinn Gunnarsson of ‘The Icelandic Centre for Research’ (RANNIS) as the new Chair of SAON. A warm welcome to Thorsteinn!

Christine Daae Olseng of the Research Council of Norway stepped down as chair on 1st July. Thanks to Christine for your hard work!

An external Committee conducted a review of SAON in 2016. (A summary is found hereThe full report is found here)
As a response to the review, members of the SAON Board met in Frascati, Italy, 27-28 June in order to develop a strategic framework for SAON. The framework will be reviewed and published in autumn 2017.


Read more: A Strategic Framework for SAON

Read more: A Strategic Framework for SAON

Read more: A Strategic Framework for SAON

Read more: A Strategic Framework for SAON



The headings are:

  • News from the Committees
  • Development of an International Arctic Observations Assessment Framework
  • Arctic Science Ministerial Meeting - US Arctic Observing Network Office
  • External review of SAON
  • SAON Board meeting in Prague

The newsletter is available here.

Understanding the Changing Arctic through Data: Stewardship, Publication, and Science

Fifth International Symposium on Arctic Research (ISAR-5), 15-18 January 2018, Tokyo, Japan (further information below and at

Session description:

Main convener: Peter L. Pulsifer

Co-conveners: Masaki Kanao, Øystein Godøy, Shannon Christoffersen Vossepoel, Hironori Yabuki, Julie Friddell

The ISAR-5 Conference aims to contribute to our understanding of a rapidly changing Arctic. These changes are being observed and experienced at a range of different scales from local to global. Science and other ways of knowing increasingly reveal that these changes are a result of a complex, interconnected physical and sociological system. Atmospheric, cryospheric and ocean drivers are interacting in ways that impact ecosystems, and all of these phenomena are connected to challenges and potential opportunities being faced by humans. Observations are at the foundation of many types of science and Indigenous knowledge, and in the 21st century these observations are typically stored as digital data. These data are transformed and mediated through analysis, visualization or other methods to form different kinds of information that is used to generate knowledge for action.
In recent years, there has been much attention paid to data and the many ways that we collect, store, manage, transform and use data. The Internet, mobile computing, and increases in computing power and storage capacities, are presenting new opportunities for supporting research and sharing knowledge. At the same time, many challenges remain in the areas of data management and use of new technology, such as securing interoperability, disclosure of data, big data treatment, data rescue, etc. In this session we call for papers that share ideas, experiences, and results related to data. Relevant topics include but are not limited to:

  • Advances in data publication and citation, including establishment of new journals and tracking of data usage and decisions (such as scientific, administrative and political) made using data;
  • Data rescue;
  • Making data from all countries widely available;
  • Improving the reusability of data;
  • Innovative ways of managing data, including integration of data in Virtual Research Environments;
  • Attempts to realization of the interoperability between datasets over the different disciplines;
  • The integration of high performance and distributed computing in data analysis;
  • Advances with data collection, including technologies simplifying data sharing, utilization, and monitoring carried out at a local scale;
  • Modeling socio-ecological systems using new techniques (e.g. agent-based modeling);
  • Innovations in data representation methods such as document oriented databases or linked open data;
  • Documenting, modeling and benefits using vocabularies and ontologies;
  • Working with Big Data.

Papers from the social sciences, Northern communities, and interdisciplinary approaches are strongly encouraged.

General Symposium information:

Calls for Abstracts and Registration for ISAR-5 are now open at

Session list -

Abstract submission information -

The deadline for Abstracts is August 31, 2017.

The deadline for early-bird registration is November 15, 2017, and late registration ends on December 15, 2017.

The symposium will address “the changing Arctic and its regional to global impact: From information to knowledge and action.” 

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