Final Project Report

The goal of the Snow Science Winter School is to teach the use of modern field quantification methods for snow cover in a field work oriented training school. The modern methods require experience and specific know-how to achieve high-quality results, necessitating an activity to provide these means to a new generation of young scientists.

In 2020, the school was organized for the 6th time by the Snow Research Center, CNRM (France), SLF (Switzerland) and FMI (Finland). It took place in Col du Lautaret, near Grenoble, France, from 16 - 22 February 2020. The SAJF facilities at Col du Lautaret allowed hosting the 24 students with direct access by foot and snowshoes to the field sites. Located at 2100 m elevation, surrounded by high alpine peaks, the site is very much suited to offer to the students a real experience of field measurements in an alpine environment.

The theme of the snow school this time was snow in a changing climate, impact on humans and nature, including an evening event that gathered local actors involved in mountain environment and climate change topics. Two full field days were organized at sites near Col du Lautaret and gave a first feeling for a self-organized measurement campaign. In addition to field practice, classroom lectures covered topics from basis of snow physics to physical snow models and remote sensing applications.

The high demand for this type of training course was highlighted by the high number of applicants. A total of 98 young scientists applied for the course in 2020, of which 24 were selected to attend.


  • 24 students from diverse fields participated in a week-long winter school, learning field techniques for scientific quantification snow properties in a natural environment.

  • The site in Col du Lautaret, made possible to conduct measurements of snow in an alpine environment with various conditions (vegetation and topography).

  • The Snow School was a unique occasion to mix students, researchers and people from the local mountain communities (mountains guides, ecosystem and social scientists) to discuss and learn about the impact of the current changes in snow conditions due to global warming on human and nature.


Date and Location

16-22 February 2020 | Col du Lautaret (France)


IASC Working Groups funding the project


Project Lead

Martin Schneebeli


Year funded by IASC



Project Status





Designed & hosted by Arctic Portal