Association of Polar Early Career Scientists

News from and about the wider APECS Network. If you have an article to contribute, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or submit via our reporting forms for APECS National Committees

Apply now for upcoming Polar Science Communication Workshop

Polar Science Communication Workshop: Aug. 12-14, Boulder, CO, USA
USAPECS scicomm workshop flyer


We would like to announce an opportunity for polar scientists of all career stages to obtain formal training in science communication strategies during an NSF- and NASA-funded workshop held in Boulder, CO, USA from August 12-14, 2017. The workshop will take place immediately prior to the International Glaciological Society (IGS) International Symposium on Polar Ice, Polar Climate, Polar Change at the University of Colorado Boulder. The workshop will include two days of oral communication training by the Alan Alda Center for Communicating Science and one day of written communication training by Dr. Max Boykoff and his team from the University of Colorado Boulder.
The workshop is open to 32 polar scientists from all career stages and spanning all disciplines in the physical and social sciences. Workshop participants do not need to attend the IGS symposium in order to participate in the science communication workshop. Funding for domestic travel and lodging are available for ~19 early-career scientists.
Workshop applications and additional information can be found at Applications are due June 5th. Notification of acceptance, and early-career funding if applicable, will be made by July.
Please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if you have any questions regarding workshop details or the application process, and please let your colleagues know about this workshop!

APECS-France at the Scientific Days of the Comity for French Research in the Arctic and in the Antarctic (CNFRA)

Unbenannt.pngAPECS-France met in Paris during the last scientific days of the CNFRA (Comity for French Research in the Arctic and in the Antarctic) the 11th and 12th of May. This event represents the annual meeting for the French polar community.
A part of the board (Céline Clément-Chastel & Lydie Lescarmontier) as well as 3 active members (Anne-Mathilde Thierry, Françoise Amelineau & Emmanuelle Sultan) attended the conference and assisted the association in the record of new members and in answering questions. The 11th, Céline gave a talk about the functioning of the association, its missions, and the current projects. At the end of the scientific days, Lydie Lescarmontier animated a small workshop in communications, giving few rules to success in giving presentations, and organised a debate with general questions about mediation and a feedback about the two last days of talks.
This event also allowed the board and the active members to gather and discuss « in live! » about the current projects and the general functioning of the association: what is not working, and what could be improved? We also have to note the presence of our famous Kakemono APECS-France invited at every APECS-France event!


APECS Workshop in Tasmania: "Communicating Across Borders"

Communicating Across Borders

APECS Oceania will be hosting a two hour workshop for early career researchers, just prior to the 2017 SCAR Humanities and Social Sciences Depths and Surfaces Conference. All conference attendees and local researchers are welcome, but please do register for the event. Details are below.

In today’s research climate, communication is an important skill. Researchers need to be able to not only communicate with colleagues in the same area, but with those from very different backgrounds, and the wider public. This session addresses the challenges associated with “communicating across borders" - such borders may be disciplinary, geographic, or between areas such as science and policy. An invited panel of international and local mentors will present short talks about their experiences communicating with various audiences, followed by a panel discussion with questions from the floor. The second half of the workshop involves practical activities related to writing effective project proposals and exploring ways to foster interdisciplinary approaches. A range of opportunities, including fellowships, for early career researchers will also be introduced. This workshop is open to all polar early career researchers. Delegates to the 2017 Depths and Surfaces Conference and local PhD candidates are both encouraged to attend. Please register for the workshop via this link.

APECS-EGU Cryosphere Panel Discussion: Which career path might be mine?

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A question that many early career scientists ask themselves... We discussed this topic at the EGU GA during the Polar Science Career Panel, which was co-organized by the EGU Cryosphere ECS team and APECS on 27 April 2017.

Our five panellists, from different backgrounds and job fields, engaged in a lively discussion with over 50 session attendees. Questions ranged from “How and when did you know what you wanted to do”, to “How important is social media presence” and “What will be the next hot topic in the field.

One hot topic of debate was whether moving to different working groups, and with that to different countries, is a must? While most of our panellists pointed to the clear advantages, some words of caution were also voiced. Moving around comes at a cost not only regarding the personal life but also the professional networks. It is not easy to keep in touch when gone for a number of years, but as realization/acknowledgment is the first step, be sure to keep it in mind.

At the end we asked each panellist to come up with some final words of advice for ECSs, which were:

  • There is no right and wrong, ask other people and see what you like
  • Remember you can shape your own job
  • Take chances! Even if you are likely to fail, and think outside the box
  • Remember that you are a whole human being... not only a scientist, and use all your skills
  • And last but not least... come and work at Carbon Brief (thanks Robert McSweeney;))

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We would again like to thank our five panellists, namely - Felicity Liggins (Climate Scientist and Outreach Program Manager from the Met Office, UK), Robert McSweeney (Science Writer for Carbon Brief), Lindsey Nicholson (SeniorPostDoc from the University of Innsbruck, Austria), Kerim Nisancioglu (Prof. of Earth Science, University of Bergen, Norway) and Wiebke Schubotz (Project Coordinator of HD(CP)² at the Max Planck Institute for Meteorology, Germany) and everybody who attended and participated in the lively discussion.

If you would like more details, you can read up on twitter @EGU_CR, search for the #CareerPanel.

... and maybe see you next year at EGU!


APECS Workshop at ASSW 2017

On Sunday 2 April around 50 early career researchers assembled in the Clarion Congress Hotel Prague for a one day workshop organised by APECS prior to the start of Arctic Science Summit Week. The day started with two panel discussions and after lunch, participants could attend two of three different breakout sessions. By the end of the day we had all learnt something new (did you know that there are flamingos in Siberia?!) and came away with new ideas and friends. Below are the take home messages from each of the sessions.


APECS workshop ASSW2017

Upcoming webinar: The first and only ice core histories from the Kilimanjaro ice fields

APECS Webinar: The first and only ice core histories from the Kilimanjaro ice fields
May 24, 20-21 GMT
[Note time change]
By Lonnie G. Thompson
Distinguished University Professor, School of Earth Sciences and Senior Research Scientist, Byrd Polar and Climate Research Center, The Ohio State University
A little history Ice core recovery in the tropics, getting started and lessons learned on the Quelccaya ice cap that would later be applied on getting the Kilimanjaro ice core paleoclimate program started.  I will explain the reasoning for selecting Kilimanjaro to do field work, first, by giving a short recount sampling shallow snow pits and shallow ice cores from Mt. Kenya, Africa 1978, which set the wheels in motion that would ultimately lead to the successful drilling of the ice fields of Kilimanjaro 22 years later.  Essentially no research had been conducted on Kilimanjaro for over 30 years before our journey to the mountain in 1999.  I plan to document how we went about setting up the necessary contacts to carry out the first shallow ice core recovery program on Kilimanjaro which would pave the way for the major ice core recovery program conducted in 2000. We conducted back to back research programs on Kilimanjaro in 1992 and 2000 and again in 2006. We have continued to obtain aerial and satellite photos of the shrinking ice fields since 2000 through 2017.

Register at:


Abstract Submission open for APECS Oceania Symposium on 18 - 19 September 2017

“Addressing future Antarctic challenges from an Oceania perspective”
Monash University, Melbourne Australia & University of Canterbury, Christchurch New Zealand
18th – 19th September 2017

Rapid global changes are challenging our perception of the world and threatening biodiversity around the planet. The Antarctic Region is no exception, and whilst largely considered to be pristine, and a “nature reserve, devoted to peace and science”, it is at risk from multiple pressures. The Antarctic Peninsula has experienced one of the most rapid temperature rises in the Southern Hemisphere, and managing invasive species to Antarctica has been labelled as the number one priority of the Committee for Environmental Protection (CEP). Tourist numbers to the region continue to grow and more countries are interested in joining the Antarctic Treaty System and being involved with the governance of Antarctica. We are only beginning to understand what these changes mean for Antarctic science, biodiversity and society.
From an Oceania perspective, how are we addressing these changes? In what way can we contribute to perpetuate the aims of the Antarctic Treaty and the Protocol for Environmental Protection to the Antarctic? The 1st APECS Oceania symposium aims to bring together early career Antarctic researchers from across Oceania to address these questions and to invoke for answers to the future Antarctic challenges.

The symposium will run on 18th – 19th of September as part of Polar Week celebrations worldwide.

The symposium will be held in Australia and New Zealand simultaneously with presentations from early career scientists and keynote speakers from both countries. The venues will be connected via video link to allow attendees to participate in all sessions across the Tasman Sea.
The venues for this event are:

  • Australia: Monash University, Level 7 Monash University Conference Centre Collins Street, Melbourne.
  • New Zealand: University of Canterbury, Christchurch, NZ

Abstract Submission:
Opening: A call for abstracts is now open
Closes: Abstract submission closes on the 9th of June 2017
Click link here for Abstract submission


  • All abstracts will be written in English
  • Abstract must be limited to 300 words
  • Include your name and any other authors involved in this presentation
  • Include your institution and your additional author institutions
  • Include a short title which summarises your presentation
  • State which session you want your abstract to be submitted to
  • State which country and time zone you will be presenting from, so that we can find a sensible time slot for your presentation

IPRN talk: What lies beneath the ice? - Role of Geologists in Antarctic Sciences

IPRN talk March 2017Indian Polar Research Network (IPRN) (APECS India) in collaboration with Department of Geology, University of Delhi organised a talk titled “What lies beneath the ice - Role of Geologists in Antarctic Sciences” on 24th March 2017 in Ram Lal Anand College, University of Delhi. This event was to mark the International Polar Week Spring 2017 celebration and followed this year’s theme of Polar week - People of the Poles: Human Use and Appreciation of Earth’s Polar Regions. The event was organised to introduce and popularize Antarctic sciences to the undergraduate geology students of Delhi University.

2 Prof. Pant explaining Why explore AntarcticaThe event commenced with an introduction of Association of Polar Early Career Scientists (APECS) and its national committee Indian Polar Research Network (IPRN) to the audience. I explained the significant findings about the melting of Antarctic ice sheet and subsequent predictions of sea level rise emphasizing the role Antarctica plays in regulating the global climate and oceanographic system. Prof. Naresh Pant, who has been working in Antarctic Geosciences from last 30 years, briefed the audience about the recently identified research priorities for Antarctic Earth Sciences. The introductory session brought out the key reasons for conserving and exploring Antarctica to the audience and initiated a dialogue.

3 Mayuri explaining her research workThe third component of the talk was to highlight the fields and disciplines through which geologists contribute to Antarctic Sciences. This was described by Ms. Mayuri Pandey who is a research scholar at Department of geology, University of Delhi and also an IPRN member. She has recently submitted her PhD in Antarctic sciences and has been a part of 36th Indian Expedition to Antarctica. Her work includes provenance studies of the Wilkes Land through IODP (U1359) sediments, paleoclimate studies through clay minerals and interpreting sub ice geology through different methods. She aptly explained different areas of geology in polar sciences that are: Glaciology, Climatology, marine sediments study and interpreting sub ice geology through indirect methods like geophysics and remote sensing with a glimpse of her research work as well. Study of micro-meteorites found in marginal marine sediments was also explained by her.

I concluded the talk with details of Indian Antarctic programme and the procedure to participate in it through the student participation scheme of National Centre for Antarctic & Ocean Research (ESSO-NCAOR), an Earth System Science Organisation under the Ministry of Earth Sciences (MoES) - Government of India. Career opportunities in polar geosciences and the various information portals like APECS Jobs portal were also highlighted for students interested in polar research. The talk was attended by about 80 students along with the faculties of the University of Delhi. The feedback by the young students was highly encouraging and we plan to organise similar kind of event regarding Arctic sciences as well.

APECS and EPB sign MoU

APECS 10 year logoepb logo desktop 2015APECS has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the European Polar Board (EPB), recognising our common goals of engaging and supporting polar science through scientific activities, promotion of polar facilities, and education, outreach and communication. The EPB and APECS recognise the importance of fostering the next generation of researchers that will be faced with increasingly critical challenges due to the impacts of climate change on the polar regions and their global significance.

Gerlis Maaike2

The MoU was signed by EPB Chair, Maaike Vancauwenberghe, and APECS Executive Director, Gerlis Fugmann, during the EPB Spring 2017 Plenary Meeting in Prague.

The European Polar Board (EPB) is an independent organisation that focuses on major European strategic priorities in both the Arctic and the Antarctic regions. Current EPB membership includes research institutes, funding agencies, scientific academies and polar operators from across Europe.

The EPB envisions a Europe with a strong and cohesive polar research community and wherein decisions affecting or affected by the polar regions are informed by independent, accurate, and timely advice from the EPB.

The EPB has a mission to improve European coordination of Arctic and Antarctic research, by optimising the use of European polar research infrastructures. We promote multilateral collaborations between our Members and provide a single contact point for the global polar community. We advance the collective knowledge of polar issues, particularly in the context of European societal relevance.

The EPB and APECS look forward to years of further collaboration.

More information on EPB can be found at

Webinar: Making Antarctic Maps and Figures with Quantarctica

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Making Antarctic Maps and Figures with Quantarctica

June 7, 2017

13:00 - 14:00 GMT


One of the most time-consuming and stressful parts of any Antarctic research project is simply making a map. Whether it’s plotting your own data points, lines, or images; making the perfect “Figure 1” for your next paper, or replying to a collaborator who says “Just show me a map!,” it seems that quick and effective map-making is a skill that we take for granted.

However, finding good map data and tools for Earth’s most sparsely-populated and poorly-mapped continent can be exhausting. The Quantarctica project ( aims to solve these problems by providing a package of pre-prepared scientific and geographic datasets, combined with easy-to-use mapping software for the entire Antarctic community.

In this webinar, we'll take a quick tour of what's available for you in Quantarctica before learning how to import and analyze your own scientific data. Then we'll dive into the world of cartographic design and show you how to create a great-looking, publication-quality map of your study site.

Registration link

What’s on at the EGU 2017

EGU CryosphereAPECS 10 year logoThe EGU 2017 offers plentify for polar ECRs from panels to social events! Whether it’s your first big conference and you are not sure how to approach it or you just want to catch up with some ‘old’ friends and colleagues. We kick-off the polar-rich EGU week during the Pre-Icebreaker Cryo meet-up on Sunday (23.4.) and head to the Icebreaker together afterwards.

Not sure which path your career might take? Join the APECS-EGU Cryosphere Polar Science Career Panel on Thursday (27.04, Session SC66/CL6.05/CR6.14), where our five panellists will engage in discussions around experiences, career paths and choices.

And meet up on Cryo Night Out (jointly organiyed by EGU Cryosphere Division and APECS on Thursday (27.04.) for a social evening with your peers.

Look out for more polar news, sessions and events on the EGU Cryospheric Sciences Blog, Facebook and APECS website. 

APECS at the 13th Session of the CliC Scientific Steering Group

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The Climate and Cryosphere (CliC) Scientific Steering Group of the World Climate Research Programme (WCRP) met for its 13th session on February 17-18, 2017. The meeting was hosted at the Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand, and took place in conjunction with the International Symposium on the Cryosphere in a hanging Climate held from February 13-17, 2017. More than twenty presentations were in the agenda, and twenty-seven participants from thirteen different countries attended the meeting (both at the location and participating remotely). The meeting was led by CliC Co-Chairs Gerhard Krinner and James Renwick.

CliC group pictureLawrence Hislop, CliC Director, welcomed the participants and highlighted the different topics of the meeting: among them were evaluation of current projects benchmarking), identification of potential duplication of CliC activities, an update of the current Science Plan and new initiatives, linkages to other organizations and research groups, etc. 

A number of oral sessions covered the wide range of CliC and WCRP activities from contributing to the 6th Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) to CliC supported Coupled Model Intercomparison Projects.

A focus was also on the multidisciplinary WCRP Grand Challenges: melting ice and global consequences, climate sensitivity, carbon feedbacks in the climate system, weather and climate prediction, water availability, sea-level change and its coastal impacts. The participants critically-reviewed the 2016-2020 CliC Science Plan, which describes their overarching research needs and themes: terrestrial cryosphere; marine cryosphere; ice sheets, glaciers and sea level; global and regional prediction and projection of the cryosphere.

Suggestions on the Science Plan were welcomed and led to an exciting discussion between the delegates about our future in an ongoing climate change. The core questions span the entire diversity of the Earth’s cryosphere: How much carbon is available in permafrost ? Why are Arctic and Antarctic sea ice behaving differently ? What is the contribution of glaciers and ice sheets to changes in global sea level on decadal-to-centennial timescales ? How does the cryosphere interact with the climate ? The answers are at the heart of an ongoing research effort across the science community. The group concluded that the current and proposed activities still reflect CliC priorities and that further work needs to be done to answer these questions.

CliC meeting room

As the APECS representative Christian Wild, I updated the participants on the actions of the Association of Polar Early Carrer Scientists (APECS). He pointd out that young scientists are passionate to contribute knowledge within the cryospheric community, be it through collecting invalueable observations, international research collaborations or education and outreach products related to the polar regions. CliC should clarify how to include Early Career Scientists generally in their activities through leadership, membership, planning and funding possibilities. Additionally, he gathered information about upcoming conferences/workshops and other opportunities for early career scientists to become actively involved. His participation at the meeting was a great experience and as his PhD topic targets the interaction between ice shelves and the ocean, he particularly enjoyed the discussion about the stability of the Antarctic ice shelves given the increase in both oceanic and atmospheric temperatures.

From a personal perspective, he had the chance to liaise with world-eminent experts of climate research and had the opportunity for more informal discussions during the breaks. Christian was also responsible for taking minutes and contributed to the meeting report. The final report of the 13th meeting of the WCRP’s CliC project Scientific Steering Group is now available at the CliC webpage and can be found here:

Contact APECS

APECS International Directorate
Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Center for Polar and Marine Research
Telegrafenberg A43
14473 Potsdam
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