The Study of Environmental Arctic Change (SEARCH) synthesizes research findings and promotes arctic science across disciplines and among agencies, coordinates national arctic environmental science programs and facilitates integration of research activities across scales with stakeholder concerns incorporated from the start of the planning process, provides information resources to arctic stakeholders, policy-makers, and the public to help them respond to arctic environmental change, and represents the U.S. arctic environmental change science community in international and global change research initiatives. Meeting these goals relies on a range of coordination, planning and assessment activities. This project will provide these through leadership of the SEARCH program in a time of rapid Arctic change and urgent information needs at the agency and societal level. Under the auspices of SEARCH, this project will support a range of activities targeting (1) strategic planning, (2) assessment and implementation, (3) coordination and (4) communication through leadership of the Science Steering Committee and engagement of SEARCH partner agencies, key national and international programs and important stakeholders.

While the proposed activities do not comprise any scientific research as such, they serve to advance scientific discovery and innovation by building a framework that fosters advanced, cross-cutting research in a range of disciplines. Assessments of past research and coordination activities as well as communication of (unpublished) advances in interdisciplinary, integrated Arctic science will engage the research community and lead to new findings and insights. Synergy derived from enhanced coordination of cross-disciplinary and international research activities will lead to new perspectives on overarching research questions which in turn are likely to lead to new discoveries.

Broader impacts: The project activities help the US research community and SEARCH partner agencies in developing a coordinated and effective response to the challenges and opportunities associated with rapid arctic environmental and socio-economic change. In particular, the project works to support the SEARCH effort in providing a scientific foundation to help society understand and respond to a rapidly changing Arctic, leading to decision-making informed by an understanding of arctic environmental change.

National Science Foundation (NSF)
Division of Polar Programs (PLR)
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Neil R. Swanberg
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University of Alaska Fairbanks Campus
United States
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