IASC Action Groups

Actions Groups are established by the IASC Council to provide strategic advice concerning both long-term activities and urgent needs. They are expert groups typically with a one or two year mandate and conclude their task with a report to the Council.

The current IASC Strategic Plan was developed as directed by the IASC Council based upon the key priorities and overarching messages of the 3rd International Conference on Arctic Research Planning (ICARP III). This, IASC´s first Strategic Plan, was approved by the IASC Council in June 2018 in Davos Switzerland and is valid from 2018 until 2023. It is based on three scientific ‘pillars’ that provide direction for a necessary progression from knowledge production to exchange, to action.

IASC must develop a new Strategic plan for 2024 onwards. However, in 2025, the 4th International Conference on Arctic Research Planning (ICARP IV) will be held, and its outcomes will influence IASC strategic planning in the future. The IASC Council therefore decided to extend the existing Strategic Plan through 2025 with only an internal update of the existing text during 2022 / 2023. An Action Group has been formed to lead the internal update of the existing IASC Strategic Plan during 2022 / 2023.

Contact: IASC Secretariat

Acknowledging the link between anthropogenic carbon emissions and rapid changes in the Arctic, including the Arctic amplification of climate change, IASC has recently convened an Action Group on Carbon Footprint (AGCF). The remit of the AGCF is to facilitate a full organisational response to the climate crisis and to explore ways to minimise the carbon footprint of IASC-related activities themselves. As an organisation promoting research and transnational access in the Arctic, we have a duty to mitigate the impacts of our activities, as well as to lead the way. The group started its work in early 2021.

Contact: IASC Secretariat

In light of the commitments made through the ICARP process and strategic planning, IASC is moving forward with these goals of better involving Indigenous peoples and incorporating Indigenous/traditional knowledge. Establishing an Action Group on Indigenous Involvement should lead to concrete recommendations to the IASC Council that will help IASC achieve its goals. The AGII report was greatefully received and approved by the IASC Council in March 2020. IASC will proceed with consideration and implementation of the AGII recommendations.

Good governance is important for the successful functioning of any (scientific) organization. Over the past decade, IASC has kept to its Founding Articles while modernizing its operations. In establishing the new Secretariat, it was identified that many IASC processes are not fully documented or formalized. In recognition of this shortcoming, this Action Group formalized IASC guiding and procedural documents and provide recommendations to align them, fill gaps, and recommend updates to one unified IASC Handbook ver. 23 March 2020.

This Action Group will facilitate discussions on how Arctic science can facilitate business and how business can facilitate Arctic science, whether through financing, data, or collaboration. In particular, this group is convening sessions at the 2017 Arctic Circle Assembly and 2018 Arctic Circle Assembly.

To reinforce IASC’s commitment to providing objective and independent scientific advice on issues of science in the Arctic and communicating scientific information to the public, in April 2017 IASC Council decided to establish the action group on Communicating Arctic Science to Policy Makers (CASP). Based on the review of the objectives and activities of IASC and its Working Groups, CASP is tasked with the development of a set of recommendations for IASC to enhance its provision of advice on issues of science in the Arctic and the communication of scientific knowledge to policymakers.

This Action Group had been mandated to provide strategic advice to the IASC Council and WGs on both long-term opportunities and priorities in the field of Geoscience research in a broader sense. The Action Group developed a report, including a set of recommendations, which was presented to the IASC Working Groups and IASC Council.

The group was formed to develop and recommend a data policy, including steps toward implementation of the policy, that to provide guidance for IASC supported activities. 

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