Researchers team up for increased Arctic cooperation

Salve Dahle is Director of Akvaplan-niva. (Thomas Nilsen / Barents Observer)
Salve Dahle is Director of Akvaplan-niva. (Thomas Nilsen / Barents Observer)
Salve Dahle with Akvaplan-Niva in Norway hopes the verbal conflict and boycott in trade between east and west will have little consequences on high north research cooperation. Arctic Frontiers conferance signs with Russian Geographical Society.

“In the High North we have a situation where cooperation and trust has developed for more than 25 years. It is in nobody’s interest that this cooperation is closed down,” says Akvaplan-Niva Director Salve Dahle to BarentsObserver.

He says it is of importance to keep the relations and the friendship across the border, and to develop cooperation where it is possible.

The new agreement between Tromsø based Akvaplan-Niva and the Russian Geographical society aims at strengthening the two most important Arctic conferences, Arctic Frontiers in Tromsø and Arctic – Territory of Dialog arranged in Russia.

“We look at each other as brother and sister. And brother and sister should be together, says Vice-President of the Russian Geographical Society, Nikolai Kasimov, in a comment to agreement posted on the portal of the Norwegian Embassy in Moscow.

Future research cooperation

Under the agreement, representatives of the Russian Geographical Society will join the expert council of Arctic Frontiers conference and will be involved in shaping the agenda.

Arctic Frontiers has been arranged annually in Tromsø since 2007. Next January, the conference will focus on climate and energy.

In comment to the cooler political climate between east and west, Salve Dahle says the negative climate developed has an effect on research cooperation.

“Some areas of research cooperation may be more difficult, travelling may be made more complicated and funding may be more difficult. In this situation the international Arctic Frontiers may be even more important, as a channel for meetings and discussion, and as an arena for keeping networks alive. It is this perspective we must evaluate the importance of the agreement between Akvaplan-niva and Russian Geographical Society,” says Salve Dahle.

He continues: “A main focus for the agreement is cooperation and support to these two fora, including representation in each other’s organizing committees, and assistance for attracting high level key note speakers.”

Related stories from around the North:

Canada:  Canada’s prime minister announces launch of Arctic research program, Radio Canada International

Finland: Finland inaugurates radio telescope in Arctic, Yle News

Greenland: Natural forces team up with human-caused warming to bake Greenland/Canadian Arctic:study, Alaska Dispatch

Sweden: Swedish study maps climate’s affect on reindeer migration, Radio Sweden

United States:  U.S.-Russia tensions create worries for Arctic scientists, Alaska Dispatch

Thomas Nilsen, The Independent Barents Observer

For more news from the Barents region visit The Independent Barents Observer.

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