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IPY-OSC Francisco Fernandoy-46
APECS is an international and interdisciplinary organization for undergraduate and graduate students, postdoctoral researchers, early faculty members, educators and others with interests in Polar Regions and the wider cryosphere. Our aims are to stimulate interdisciplinary and international research collaborations, and develop effective future leaders in polar research, education and outreach. We seek to achieve these aims by:
  • Facilitating international and interdisciplinary networking to share ideas and experiences and to develop new research directions and collaborations;
  • Providing opportunities for professional career development; and
  • Promoting education and outreach as an integral component of polar research and to stimulate future generations of polar researchers.


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The main costs associated with running APECS comes in supporting our International Directorate Office currently located in Tromsø, Norway. We are very grateful to the Research Council of Norway, the University of Tromsø, and the Norwegian Polar Institute for providing the majority of the finances needed to keep all our activities centrally coordinated and running efficiently. Below is some information to help you learn more about these great organizations and the opportunities they have for early career researchers.

Research Council of Norway

research council of norwayThe Research Council is Norway's official body for the development and implementation of national research strategy. The Council is responsible for enhancing Norway's knowledge base and for promoting basic and applied research and innovation in order to help meet research needs within society. The Research Council also works actively to encourage international research cooperation. Underlying all the Research Council's activities is the viewpoint that research expands the boundaries of what we know, understand and can achieve. Research adds cultural resonance to society and creates a viable framework for welfare, value creation and sustainable development. Through its efforts as an advisory body on research strategy issues, a research funding agency and initiator of meeting places and networks, the Research Council seeks to meet and constantly refine the objectives for Norwegian research policy.

Fore more information please visit the Research Council of Norway website

Norwegian Polar Institute

Norwegian Polar InstituteThe Norwegian Polar Institute is Norway's central institution for research, environmental monitoring and mapping of the polar regions. The Institute is the Norwegian authorities' consultant and supplier of knowledge, and contributes to the best possible administration of Norwegian polar areas. Through active participation in national and international bodies, the Polar Institute is central when it comes to protecting national interests in matters of research and the environment. Approximately 110 persons are employed at the Institute in Tromsø, Svalbard and Dronning Maud Land.

For more information please visit the Norwegian Polar Institute website

University of Tromsø

University of TromsoThe University of Tromsø is the northernmost university of the world. Research and studies offered at our university focus on Arctic and northern issues: marine science, biomedicine, telemedicine, physics, linguistics, multiculturalism, and research related to the Saami and indigenous people. Our university shall contribute to the national Norwegian diversity of basic scientific research and for some research areas we shall be among the best international actors.

Fore more information please visit the website of the University of Tromsø


Featured Member

Kristen_GormanSimon Fraser University, Canada

Kristen Gorman is a PhD candidate in the Department of Biological Sciences, Simon Fraser University. Kristen has conducted ecological research since 1994, primarily focusing on birds. Her field experience ranges from the forests of tropical Australia, New England and the Rocky Mountains, to coastal-marine systems of the Pacific Northwest including Alaska, and the western Antarctic Peninsula. She is especially interested in global change biology, high latitude ecosystems, evolutionary ecology and physiology. Her MSc research involved extensive fieldwork at a US Geological Survey field camp located on the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta, western Alaska, which resulted in 4 scientific publications on the reproductive energetics of female greater scaup.

Kristen’s dissertation, in collaboration with the Palmer Station, Antarctica, Long-Term Ecological Research Program, US National Science Foundation, is examining nutritional and physiological correlates of variation in breeding performance by three closely related species of penguin (genus Pygoscelis) demonstrating pole-ward shifts in breeding bio-geographic range in response to regional climate warming throughout the Scotia Arc and Antarctic Peninsula. She also is developing a population genetics component to her dissertation that will use microsatellite genetic markers to provide a quantitative understanding of the relative importance of demographic parameters (fitness versus dispersal) in driving observed shifts in Pygoscelis breeding range.

Kristen has deployed on 8 expeditions to the Antarctic since 2005, and has published 10 scientific manuscripts on the nutritional ecology, evolutionary physiology, and life histories of birds. She has won research and scholarship awards through the American Ornithologists’ Union, Explorers Club, American Museum of Natural History, Anne Vallée Ecological Fund, Antarctic Science Ltd, and Simon Fraser University. She has served as a peer-reviewer for scientific journals such as Journal of Avian Biology, Marine Ecology-Progress Series, Biology Letters, Waterbirds, and the Journal of Animal Ecology. Kristen is the current graduate student representative to the US LTER network for her Antarctic research group and was co-organizer of the seminar series, Les Ecologistes, at Simon Fraser University (2010/11). She is a passionate trail runner, rock climber, backcountry skier, and surfer. These outdoor pursuits have been key in her continued experiential learning and in leading a balanced life style. She also is particularly fond of her dog, Yugi.

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