Advanced Search

News & Announcements

IPY Report: October 2009


1. Oslo Science Conference, 8-12 June 2010
2. Polar Week Underway!
3. Polar Information Commons
4. Canadian Workshops and Conferences
5. APECS Update

Report no. 30, October 2009
From: IPY International Programme Office
To: IPY Project Coordinators
cc: IPY Community Google Groups

1. Oslo Science Conference, 8-12 June 2010

A timely and auspicious gathering of the full polar community to celebrate the remarkable accomplishments of this IPY, to display and explore the richness of IPY data, and to chart future directions for polar and global science.  A polar festival in the city, a programme for international teachers, a film festival, a barbecue at the Fram Museum, polar exhibits, awards, the IPY closing ceremony, and an exciting and interconnected science programme - one of the most important events of this IPY.

Notable Features:

Breadth - The Oslo Science Conference will include a broad mix of researchers, from anthropology to astronomy, genomics to glaciology, psychology to physiology, and ecology to economics.

International - More than 30 IPY national committees, 19 countries produced new polar research funding, participants from more than 60 countries.  All member nations of the Arctic Council (8) and of the Antarctic Treaty system (28) play key roles.

Diversity - Visionary data managers, international networks of science educators, members of northern communities, a vigorous association of young polar scientists, exhibition designers and filmmakers - all these partners in IPY’s success will join the Oslo Science Conference.

Urgency - Disappearing snow and ice, world-wide impacts of the polar changes, and the vulnerabilities of northern cultures and communities - these compelling issues remain prominent and timely to the international press and to global citizens.

Programme and Second Circular now available @

2. Polar Week Underway!

Happy Polar Week and we hope you are celebrating the wonder of the polar regions wherever this message reaches you.

We wanted to provide you with an update on the activities that are happening around the globe this week:

* Launch a virtual balloon: There are already celebrations marked in Malaysia, Denmark, Brazil, US, Alaska, China and Canada! Postings are welcome from all of those hosting public talks, participating in classroom activities or surfing our website. We want to fill the map by the end of the week so launch your balloon today!

* Post a blog of your activity: Take a picture, send us a story, and help fill our blog with Polar Week activity. Anyone who has a Polar Week story to share please send it to Melissa @ We’d love to hear from you.

* ANYONE can join a discussion of the future of the Arctic: Students have the opportunity to participate in an in-class role play exercise to begin to understand the complexity of the situation in the Arctic and the conflicts of interest between economic, environmental and social issues. Listeners can hear classes around the globe share their concerns about the future of the Arctic by listening live OR blogging their own questions to a panel of experts who will respond to class presentations and answer student questions.

Event Host: CKLB radio in Yellowknife, Canada (

Event Date: Thursday October 8th

Event Time: 9AM MDT (1500 UTC)

Access: Listen live @ www. (archives are also available) OR send your questions to CKLB blog at

Information: For more details please visit October Polar Week Page

* Join real-time live event with PolarTREC teacher, Cristina Galvan and the University of Wyoming scientists led by Dr. Merav Ben-David. The team is currently studying polar bear response to sea ice loss in the Arctic Ocean. This event is free, open to the public, Participants will have a chance to ask questions and chat with others during the presentation.

Event Host: ARCUS through the PolarTREC program.

Event Date: 8 October 2009

Event Time: 7:30 am Alaska Daylight Time (5:30 am HST, 8:30 am PDT, 9:30 am MDT, 10:30 am CDT, 11:30 am EDT)

Registration: To register for the event and to receive instructions on how to join, go to:

For more information about the science expedition, please Ms. Galvan’s journals at:

* Your feedback is needed! The editors and authors of the Polar Resource Book are interested in your feedback on the five activities that we have chosen from Polar Science and Global Climate. We have prepared a set of five questions that you can answer for any of the resources and that will help us to respond to the specific requirements of our future readers. The form for feedback can be found at

3. Polar Information Commons (PIC)

Assume you measure sea ice thickness from buoys.  Assume you have buoys in both the Arctic and Antarctic, providing data monthly during the hemispheric winter.  You agree to the IPY data sharing policies, but you face practical data management problems: requirements to provide your data to Arctic and Antarctic data centres and to your national data centre.  You face multiple portals, different formats, and a substantial work load to meet your data commitments and responsibilities.  We have a solution to propose - a Polar Information Commons!

You can (soon) share data through PIC.  In our vision, once you have labelled your data with a PIC ‘badge’, requesting data centres will recognise your data and download (and preserve!) it, keeping you and the data centres happy.  Perhaps, one of those data centres will pick up your PIC-labelled thickness data, add it to remotely sensed thickness data and their standard sea ice extent products and produce, again with a PIC label that recognises your original PIC label, an ice volume product - just what you would have wanted.  You and fellow researchers get that product through direct services of the data centre, but the centre also ‘leaks’ snippets of that back into the network with a PIC label to attract and inform other customers.  Meanwhile, when a colleague searches the PIC for ice thickness data to match with his or her radar data, they find and use your Antarctic thickness data.  You get a paper together, everyone’s contribution gets acknowledged, and the PIC data continues to circulate for additional, perhaps un-anticipated uses.

If this sounds ideal, please learn more at

4. Canadian Workshops and Conferences

As part of its national support for the IPO and for continuing IPY activities, Canada has and will support two meetings of IPY sub-committees and an IPY-focused student conference during October.  An IPY Data Management meeting occurred in Ottawa last week; they focussed on tasks and cooperation to complete an inventory of IPY data and on the Polar Information Commons (above).  They intend to issue a ‘Status of Polar Data’ report.  The Association of Canadian Universities for Northern Studies (ACUNS) held a student conference in Whitehorse, Yukon, focused on IPY legacies in research and communities; many partners, including the IPO, helped that become a widely international meeting.  The breadth of IPY science and the enthusiasm and talent of young polar scientists came through loud and clear.  APECS organised a friendly pre-conference workshop where we talked about polar presentations, polar organisations, and polar data.  Put yourself in the shoes of an undergraduate student giving your first-ever presentation in a language not your own - that symbolised to me the commitments these students make to international communication and cooperation.  At the end of the month, the IPY Education and Outreach committee will meet in Edmonton, Alberta.

5. Update from APECS

APECS is in the process of electing the 2009-2010 Executive Committee, visit to see the great candidates. The Virtual Poster Session and the Literature Discussion are moving along and have loads of great new submissions, check them out at There are several upcoming meetings and events, visit for your opportunities to get involved.

We are also excited to report the IPY Oslo Science Conference will be a great place for all young polar researchers to be. APECS will be having a 2-day career development workshop prior to the meeting, a speed-dating/networking event with senior mentors, and a lounge open to young researchers to relax during the meeting or chat with mentors.

In addition, there will be awards for outstanding posters and oral presentations, an online job connections website, and an interview room to use during the conference. There will be a large number of stipends to help young researchers attend this meeting which include lodging, 1/2 price registration, most meals, local transportation, and entrance to all conference social activities. We also have APECS members on every one of the 6 conference theme committees and the overall steering committee. For each session, one of the 3 conveners/ chairs will be an early career researcher. So as you can see, the IPY Oslo Conference will be a great meeting for all of you to attend; not only to meet each other, but to make connections to mentors, educators and the senior research community. More information on the application process and deadlines for these activities will be forthcoming. For more information, keep your eyes on

As always, we encourage anyone with an open position to post it on the APECS website at If you have any other great opportunities to share with the members, just send an email to 

Add A Comment

Please use these fields to leave a public comment on this entry. For direct correspondence with the IPY International Programme Office, please see Get Involved or email the IPY Programme Office.





Please enter the word you see in the image below: