Association of Polar Early Career Scientists

APPLICATE course logos 2The Association of Polar Early Career Scientists (APECS), in collaboration with the APPLICATE (Advanced Prediction in Polar regions and beyond: modelling, observing system design and LInkages associated with a Changing Arctic climaTE) project and the Year of Polar Prediction (YOPP) is announcing a free online course on "Advancing Predictive Capability of Northern Hemisphere Weather and Climate” to take place from September to December 2019. 

About the partners: APPLICATE is one of the projects within the EU Arctic Cluster, a network of projects funded through the EU Horizon 2020 and Framework Programme 7. The scope of APPLICATE is to improve weather and climate predictions in the Arctic. Studying the influence of Arctic climate change on Northern Hemisphere mid-latitudes, APPLICATE fosters engagement with policy makers, industry and other stakeholder groups who benefit from improved predictive capacity in Arctic regions. The Year of Polar Prediction (YOPP) is the flagship activity of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO)' s Polar Prediction Project with the aim of enabling a significant improvement in environmental prediction capabilities for the polar regions and beyond, by coordinating a period of intensive observing, modelling, verification, user-engagement and education activities. APPLICATE is one of the key projects endorsed by the Year of Polar Prediction.

About the course: The course will be a training activity within the APPLICATE project (Work Package 7: User engagement, dissemination and training) and the Year of Polar Prediction education effort. The online course is designed for early career researchers (e.g., Master and PhD students, Postdocs) with a specific interest in Arctic weather and climate prediction and modelling. Advanced knowledge and understanding of weather systems, climate, modelling and forecasting is an advantage when registering for this course but not a prerequisite. An introduction to APPLICATE`s research focus and goals can be found in these three webinars.

This course will provide an overview of the state-of-the-art knowledge of Northern high-latitude weather and climate predictions; including aspects relevant for the Arctic climate system; and linkages between Arctic and mid-latitude/global weather. The topics will include an overview of the observing system design in the Arctic, current methods in weather and climate predictions and how predictive skill can be improved. An important aspect of the course are Arctic extreme weather phenomena and engagement of stakeholders who are using weather and climate predictions in their daily operations.

This course is supported through the APPLICATE project that received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 727862, the Year of Polar Prediction, the Association of Polar Early Career Scientists (APECS), the Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Center for Polar and Marine Research, and UiT The Arctic University in Tromsø.

© Photos by Fiona Tummon and Gerlis Fugmann from the Polar Prediction School 2018
Polar Prediction School 2018 2 Kopie

Basic information and timeline

  • Target audience: Master and PhD students, Postdoctoral researchers and others interested in the course topic
  • Timeline: The course will run from September to December 2019 (13 sessions, week 38/Sept. 16-20 until week 49/Dec. 2-6) with one webinar per week.
  • Students who take the full course will complete a practical task related to stakeholder engagement as group work and present their outcomes in the last session (week 49/Dec. 2-6).
  • Two levels of participation in the course will be offered:
    • Level 1: Attending the full course and completing the practical task. The participants will receive a course certificate after the course if all course sections have been successfully completed.
    • Level 2: Attending only individual sessions of the course. No course certificate will be provided.
  • Course registration: Participants have to register for the course in advance. The link for joining the webinars will only be distributed to those who are registered. Priority will be given to students who are taking the full course, remaining spots will be given on a first come, first served basis to those who register for individual sessions. There will be a short anonymous survey about participant information, expectations for the course/webinars, and feedback. 

Time commitment, student engagement and course certificate for students taking the full course

The time commitment for the students taking the full course (level 1) will be:

  • 1h for webinar (compulsory for receiving a certificate),
  • Additional 1-2h per week for the work on the practical task (case studies) (compulsory for receiving a certificate),
  • Recommended additional reading (voluntarily).

Student engagement during the course (compulsory for receiving a course certificate):

  • Biography / Research Description: A biography and description of research focus of all participants that are taking the full course will be published on the course website and used to identify common research interests for group work (submitted as part of the registration form, max. 100 words).
  • Practical Task: The students will further develop existing and create new case studies (information sheets for different types of stakeholders) using weather and climate predictions within the context of APPLICATE as group work. Students will be assigned to a group at the beginning of the course. The APPLICATE project will provide a template for existing case studies that the students can work with. The results of the practical tasks will be presented in the final session of the course.
  • Active participation in discussions during the webinars and in the preparation of the practical task.
  • Presentation of the practical group tasks in the final session.
  • Participation in final course evaluation.

Course certificate:

  • We offer a certificate of attendance for students who successfully complete all the required course parts.
  • Unfortunately, we cannot offer ECTS credits. However, some universities allow internal conversion to the ECTS system. Students may contact their study administration individually. The course organizers are happy to provide information about your completed course tasks upon request.

Preliminary Agenda

Please note that there may be small changes to this agenda. The sessions will take place around 16 - 18 GMT. 

Block 1: Introduction
19 September

Course introduction, introduction to Polar weather and climate

Speaker: Thomas Jung (Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research, Germany)

26 September

Stakeholder engagement and example of APPLICATE case studies

Speaker: Marta Terrado & Dragana Bojovic (Barcelona Supercomputing Center, Spain)

3 October

Boundary layer, clouds and air mass transformation

Speaker: TBA

10 October

Sea ice and sea ice prediction

Speaker: TBA

Block 2 - Data and modelling

17 October

Observing system design in the Arctic

Speaker: Taneil Uttal (NOAA, United States)

24 October

Study design/experimental setups, data assimilation

Speaker: TBA

31 October

Different scales of predictions

Speaker: Doug Smith (MetOffice, United Kingdom)

7 November

Evaluating models

Speaker: Barbara Casati (Environment Canada, Canada)

Block 3 - Arctic

14 November

Polar ocean forecasting

Speaker: TBA

21 November

Arctic weather phenomena and extremes

Speaker: Thomas Sprengler (University of Bergen, Norway)

28 November

Challenges related to improving weather predictions in the Arctic

Speaker: Irina Sandu (European Center For Medium Range Weather Forecasts, United Kingdom)

 5 December

APPLICATE and the Year Of Polar Prediction (YOPP)

Speaker: TBA

Practical task: Case studies

The case studies focus on extreme events of Arctic weather and climate on different time scales, and their impact on a specific aspect of society or daily life in the Arctic and beyond. Severe Weather Europe has a good collection and documentation of unusual weather events in Europe. Visit the APPLICATE website for examples of case studies done by the project so far. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Course Organizers

  • Andrea Schneider - Association of Polar Early Career Scientists (APECS) / UiT The Arctic University of Norway (Course Administrator), e-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
  • Natalie Carter - University of Ottawa, Canada
  • Luisa Cristini - APPLICATE / Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research, Germany
  • Gerlis Fugmann - Association of Polar Early Career Scientists (APECS)/ Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research, Germany
  • Paul Rosenbaum - Uppsala University, Sweden
  • Fiona Tummon - Federal Office of Meteorology and Climatology MeteoSwiss, Switzerland
  • Kirstin Werner - International Coordination Office for Polar Prediction (ICO) / Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research, Germany

Contact APECS

APECS International Directorate
Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Center for Polar and Marine Research
Telegrafenberg A45
14473 Potsdam
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Our Sponsors

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Further Sponsors and Partners for APECS projects, activities and events