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Welcome to Arctic Horizons

December 17, 2015 By Aaron Presnall,

Arctic Horizons project provides a framework and process that will bring together the Arctic social science research and Arctic indigenous communities to reassess goals, potentials, and needs in the diverse disciplinary and transdisciplinary currents of social science research of the circumpolar North.  A series of five regional workshops and one synthesis workshop will engage approximately 150 western and indigenous scholars in the re-visioning process. Additional participation by the broader Arctic social sciences, indigenous science, and stakeholder communities will be solicited through this interactive web platform that will also be used to share workshop and project outcomes (e.g. videos of speakers, workshop notes, copy of the report), as well as through special sessions at regional conferences (e.g. Alaska Anthropological Association Annual Meeting, Arctic Science Summit Week, Association of American Geographers).

Whenever possible, keynote addresses will be video live cast through the platform and preserved for convenient review. Dynamic embeddable data visualizations will present the running results of project analytics, including text analysis of associations in the transcripts of workshop discussions, participant survey results, citation surveys, and an analysis of all 737 NSF grants issued since 1981. The resulting community-based vision will inform research investments for Arctic social science research over the next decade.

Arctic social sciences have experienced substantial growth and development over the past 15 years, transitioning from an emerging field of research to a well-established multidisciplinary research area since the last arctic social sciences visioning workshop held in 1999.  The project is the collaboration of five institutions, all of which have a strong history of supporting Arctic social science research (UAF and Brown) or are developing new programs that support Arctic social science research (UNI and PSU).

The process will be overseen by a senior advisory panel that includes social scientists and indigenous community members.  The project will leverage the broad research networks of the PIs to recruit participation from a diverse and wide-ranging group of early, mid and senior career scholars, ensuring gender and disciplinary equity and the participation of underrepresented groups.  This will be achieved through targeted invitation to workshops, a promotional campaign for web input through electronic media, and through participant recruitment at conferences and meetings. The capstone event is a synthesis workshop where the information generated at each of the regional/topical workshops and the on-line input will be combined in a report on the research priorities collectively identified by the Arctic social sciences community.