News from the Arctic Institute of North America, University of Calgary

By: Maribeth S. Murray, Executive Director, Arctic Institute of North America, University of Calgary

Arctic Institute of North America

The Arctic Institute of North America (AINA) is a non-profit membership organization and a multi-disciplinary research institute at the University of Calgary. The Institute was created in 1945 by an act of Canadian Parliament. It's mandate is to advance the study of the North American and circumpolar Arctic through the natural and social sciences and the arts and humanities, to preserve and disseminate information on the physical, environmental, and social conditions in the North. The Arctic Institute is home to the Kluane Lake Research Station in Yukon Territory and the Arctic Science and Technology Information System, and it publishes the interdisciplinary Arctic Journal.

On 1 July 2013, the institute welcomed Maribeth Murray as new Executive Director. Murray came to AINA as the Executive Director of the International Study of Arctic Change (ISAC) and was a faculty member at the University of Alaska Fairbanks. Her research is focused on the linkages among human and natural system dynamics in the North, marine ecosystem sustainability, and historical human ecology. Murray holds a BA in archaeology from Wilfrid Laurier University in Waterloo, an MA in archaeology from Memorial University of Newfoundland, and a PhD in anthropology from McMaster University.

AINA is now entering a new phase of growth that includes expanding research activities, developing an education and outreach program, enhancing facilities at the Kluane Lake Research Station, and implementing an Arctic research and information-sharing platform. Of interest to the wider research community is the following project.

Feasibility Study – Implementation of Circumpolar Biodiversity Monitoring Program (CBMP) Terrestrial Biodiversity Monitoring Protocols at Northern Canadian Research Facilities

The goal of this implementation study is to engage station mangers, the research community, and agencies charged with monitoring terrestrial biodiversity and resource management, in a dialogue to:

  1. Assess alignment between current station-based activities (research and monitoring) and proposed CBMP activities;
  2. Determine opportunities for harmonization with the CBMP plan;
  3. Identify necessary resources and capacity building requirements to improve monitoring of the Focal Ecosystem Components identified by CBMP;
  4. Assess how implementation of CBMP recommendations might improve research (capacity and results), decision-making, and the exchange of data and information among Canadian stations, researchers, and agencies, and with the international terrestrial research and monitoring communities.

For further information about the study, to offer input, or participate in the upcoming survey, please contact: Sian Williams, Station Manager, KLRS, Arctic Institute of North America, University of Calgary (sian [dot] williams [at] ucalgary [dot] ca) or Maribeth S. Murray, Executive Director, Arctic Institute of North America, University of Calgary (murraym [at] ucalgary [dot] ca).

For further information about the Arctic Institute of North America (AINA), see the AINA website.