Arctic System Science Program

Witness the Arctic | 2012 | Article | Image
An interdisciplinary team of researchers has applied a systems science approach to investigate how dramatic changes in permafrost features influence the structure and function of the arctic landscape. This study, led by W. B. Bowden of the Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources at the University of Vermont, focuses on the composition of vegetation, the distribution and processing of soil nutrients, and exports of sediments and nutrients to stream and lake ecosystems to help understand how thawing permafrost will change the arctic landscape and other implications.

International News

International Study of Arctic Change
The International Study of Arctic Change (ISAC) is an interdisciplinary program of research on arctic environmental change initiated in the wake of the 2003 Study of Environmental Arctic Change (SEARCH) Open Science Meeting . A legacy of the International Polar Year (IPY), ISAC facilitates cooperation and collaboration in international arctic research and full integration of stakeholders into the research process. ISAC seeks to extend study of the Arctic from basic science to offer insight into options for solving real-world problems intrinsic to a changing planet.

A Note From the ARCUS Executive Director

Susan Fox
Recently an ARCUS member institution representative asked for my help in making the case for our consortium dues to his department dean. Together we successfully outlined the value that member institutions receive from their ARCUS dues. It is a message worth sharing more broadly.

From the ARCUS Board

ARCUS Board Member Marianne Douglas
In May 2012 the ARCUS Board met in its first face-to-face meeting of recent years. The ARCUS Annual Meeting , convened in Washington, D.C. following the inaugural AGU Science Policy Conference and the ARCUS Arctic Forum, was the opportune time for a one-day retreat. The ever-growing myriad of arctic-related organizations emphasizes the increasing need for interdisciplinary science research that will form the basis for informed arctic policies. An organization such as ARCUS, whose membership is largely academic institutions, can play an important role in enabling this necessary research and...


Witness the Arctic provides information on current arctic research efforts and findings, significant research initiatives, national policy affecting arctic research, international activities, and profiles of institutions with major arctic research efforts. Witness serves an audience of arctic scientists, educators, agency personnel, and policy makers. Witness was published biannually in hardcopy from 1995-2008 (archives are available below). Starting in early 2009 the issues have been published online 3-4 times per year depending on newsworthy events. Over 12,500 subscribers receive notifications, brief descriptions of content, and direct links to the articles online.



With the Spring 2009 issue, ARCUS changed the format of Witness the Arctic. To provide more frequent updates and reduce printing and mailing costs and associated environmental impacts, the newsletter is now distributed online in three or four shorter issues per year, depending on newsworthy events.


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