New ARCUS Vision and Mission Statements

In January 2014 the Board of Directors adopted new Vision and Mission statements for ARCUS. These statements were the result of approximately 18 months' worth of discussions during which the board and staff took a self-critical look at the organization. The board embarked on this mission as it became clear that a clean mission statement was needed to effectively focus ARCUS activities. This evaluation of ARCUS started with a facilitated discussion between the board and staff in the spring of 2012 to review the history of ARCUS, its strengths, and its perceived challenges. The outcome of that meeting was a summary document of the current state of and perspectives from the board for the future direction of the organization. A board sub-committee met with the staff in Fairbanks in early 2013 to draft a Vision and Mission statement. The draft was refined during subsequent board meetings and the final version was approved in January 2014. The ARCUS Vision and Mission Statement is publicly available.

Rapid changes in the Arctic environment led to rapid increases in the scope and complexity of activities in the Arctic. Several government agencies now have an increased presence in Arctic research, even as industrial activities are increasing. The number of researchers interested in the Arctic is increasing, amongst them people from and communities in the Arctic. The board assessed ARCUS strengths in facilitating interdisciplinary collaborative programs, education, and outreach. The new Vision and Mission statements seek to build on these strengths while somewhat adjusting the focus.

ARCUS is envisioned as serving Arctic researchers, be they academic, agency, industry, or others. Our goal is for ARCUS to be the go-to place for researchers seeking to develop and manage interdisciplinary projects; support and enable their out-reach to Arctic communities, policymakers, industry, and other decision-makers; and support efforts to inform the Arctic literate public. To succeed in these goals ARCUS must have an actively engaged member population. The board is committed to working with the staff to strategically focus ARCUS activities so that ARCUS will be a catalyst for interdisciplinary thinking, acting, and education leading to the development of highly collaborative partnerships.

This is an exciting time for ARCUS. With the board fully engaged and a clear mission statement the excellent ARCUS staff can now focus on what they do best: bringing the Arctic research community together in small and large interdisciplinary projects.

Johannes (Hans) Verlinde
Secretary, ARCUS Board of Directors