A new report on Arctic information and communication needs (“Gap Analysis Report”) has been released as part of the Strategic Environmental Impact Assessment of development of the Arctic Preparatory Action project, funded by DG Environment of the European Commission. The Gap Analysis Report was led by Ecologic Institute in partnership with the European Science Foundation, National Research Council of Italy, Sámi Education Institute, and Tromsø Centre for Remote Sensing.
The report identifies, analyzes, and illustrates the Arctic information needs of stakeholders and policy-makers and offers recommendations on ways to improve knowledge and to improve two-way communication between information providers and users. It highlights information and communication gaps and major Arctic trends throughout a number of thematic areas and human needs in the Arctic. The Gap Analysis Report also assesses how an EU Arctic Information Centre (EUAIC) could improve information provision and communication.
“The Gap Analysis Report demonstrates that Arctic stakeholders not only desire new information, but also seek better, coordinated access to existing information sources, which a network of expert institutes operating as an EU Arctic Information Centre could help facilitate,” said Elizabeth Tedsen, Fellow at Ecologic Institute.
“The Arctic has become of global interest during the past few years, and it is important that images, decisions, and policies regarding the development of the region are based on best available information,” commented Professor Paula Kankaanpää, Director of the Arctic Centre and Principal Investigator on the Preparatory Action.
While the report’s recommendations in the context of the Preparatory Action were necessarily limited due to its broad thematic focus, it should be seen as a building block for future efforts, including for subject-specific recommendations that draw from the wealth of knowledge of Arctic stakeholders.