United Kingdom


Adapting To Change: UK policy towards the Arctic (2013), Foreign and Commonwealth Office


Arctic research support and coordination in the UK is the task of the NERC Arctic Office. The Arctic Office is funded by the Natural Environmental Research Council (NERC) and hosted by theBritish Antarctic Survey (BAS). BAS manages the UK Arctic ResearchStation at Ny-Ålesund on Svalbard, the station is an INTERACT Observer. NERC also operates the four polar research vessels, the James Clark Ross, Ernest Shackleton,RRS Discovery and RRS James Cook. The James Clark Ross operates primarily in the eastern Arctic Ocean. It also operates several research aircraft.

Another institution which provides a springboard for Arctic initiatives, and runs several themselves, is the Scott Polar Research Institute, a centre for research into both polar regions at the University of Cambridge. A large number of universities in the UK have Arctic research projects, including most in the Russell Group and some universities have research themes focussing on Arctic and sub-­‐Arctic research, such as the University of Aberdeen and the University of Southampton, Ocean and Earth Science, National Oceanography Centre Southampton (NOCS)

  • The Solar-Terrestrial Environment Laboratory (UK) is part of The European Incoherent Scatter Scientific Association (EISCAT) has its headquarters in Kiruna, Sweden. The experimental sites of EISCAT are located in the Scandinavian sector north of the Arctic Circle. In addition to UK, investments and operational costs are shared between the China Research Institute of Radiowave Propagation, People’s Republic of China, National Institute of Polar Research, Japan, the Research Council of Norway, Science and Technology Facilities Council, United Kingdom, Nagoya University, Japan, the Finish Academy, Finland and the Swedish Research Council. It was established to conduct research on the lower, middle and upper atmosphere and ionosphere using the incoherent scatter radar technique.


  • PLYMOUTH MARINE LABORATORY is partner to NETMAR (Open service network for Marine Environmental Data), a project that aims at developing a pilot European Marine Information System (EUMIS) for searching, downloading and integrating satellite, in situ and model data from ocean and coastal areas. NETMAR is partially financed by the EU by the 7th Framework Programme.
  • Natural Environment Research Council, University of Cambridge, the Scottish Association for Marine Science, are partners to ACCESS (Arctic Climate Change, Economy and Society /Climate Change and the Arctic environment WG), a project aimed at evaluating the Arctic climate change scenarios and their impact on specific economic sectors and human activities over the next decades. The project is fully financed by the EU by the 7th Framework Programme and Ocean of Tomorrow.
  • University of Cambridge, Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics, is partner to SIDARUS (Sea Ice Downstream Services for Arctic and Antarctic Users and Stakeholders), a project for the development and implementation of a set of sea ice downstream services in the area of climate research, marine safety and environmental monitoring. SIDARUS is partially financed by the EU through the European Earth Observation Programme Copernicus, 7th Framework Programme.
  • The James Hutton Institute is lead partner to HUNT , a project aimed at assessing the social, cultural, economic and ecological functions and impacts of hunting. HUNT is partially financed by the EU by the 7th Framework Programme. Also the Imperial College Conservation Science group, The Environmental Economics Research Group, University of Stirling, The School of Biological Sciences at Aberdeen University, (Scotland) are partners to HUNT.
  • European Centre for Medium-­‐Range Weather Forecasts, is partner to CoreClimax, a project for the identification of essential climate change variables and the creation of long term climate data records. CoreClimax is partially financed by the EU by the 7th Framework Programme
  • University of Cambridge is partner Arctic Tipping Points, a project aimed at Identifying the elements of the Arctic marine ecosystem likely to show abrupt changes in response to climate change, and establish the levels of the corresponding climate drivers inducing regime shift in those tipping elements. In addition, determine the effect of crossing those thresholds for the Arctic marine ecosystems, and the associated risks and opportunities for economic activities dependent on the marine ecosystem of the European Arctic. Arctic Tipping Points is partially financed by the EU by the 7th Framework Programme.
  • Natural Environment Research Council, University Of Cambridge, University of Bristol, Sir Alister Hardy Foundation For Ocean Science, University of Southampton, Plymouth Marine Laboratory, Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom, the Scottish Association for Marine Science (Scotland), University Of Plymouth -­‐ Higher Education Corporation, are partners to Epoca (European Project On Ocean Acidification), a project for advancing the understanding of the biological, ecological, biogeochemical, and societal implications of ocean acidification. Epoca is partially financed by the EU by the 7th Framework Programme.
  • The University of Sheffield is partner to MONARCH-A (MONitoring and Assessing Regional Climate change in High latitudes and the Arctic), a project aimed at generating a dedicated information package tailored to a subset of multidisciplinary Essential Climate Variables and their mutual forcing and feedback mechanisms associated with changes in terrestrial carbon and water fluxes, sea level and ocean circulation and the marine carbon cycle. MONARCH-A is partially financed by the EU by the 7th Framework Programme
  • University of Exeter,Met Office, for and on behalf of the Secretary of State for the Defence of the United Kingdom, Great Britain and Northern Ireland are partners to to Page21, a project aimed at understanding and quantifying the vulnerability of permafrost environments to a changing global climate, and to investigate the feedback mechanisms associated with increasing greenhouse gas emissions from permafrost zones. Page21 is partially financed by the EU

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