Association of Polar Early Career Scientists


Several APECS members played a pivotal role at the recent Polar Symposium 2024 in Monaco, held 22-23 February. The APECS rapporteurs were José Queirós as APECS President, Hugo Guímaro and Lina Madaj as APECS Vice-Presidents, Gwenaëlle Gremion as ExOfficio for the Executive Committee and Alice Guzzi as National Committee Coordinator. Sarah Strand was also part of the APECS delegation as Executive Director. The rapporteurs’ responsibility was to summarise key points from the discussions during workshops and to ensure that the voices of early career scientists (ECSs) were heard.

Fig. 1 - APECS members with SCAR and IASC fellows at the Polar Symposium 2024 in Monaco (from left to the right: Alice Guzzi, Beatriz Recinos, Lina Madaj, Sarah Strand, Gwenaëlle Gremion, Hugo Guímaro, Archana Dayal, José Queirós). © Philippe Fitte / FPA2

APECS' involvement in the symposium builds on prior engagement in the One Planet - Polar Summit in Paris in 2023 and the Polar Symposium 2022, highlighting APECS’ ongoing commitment to shaping polar research and policy. The Polar Symposium 2024 was organised by the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation in collaboration with the Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research (SCAR) and the International Arctic Science Committee (IASC), as well as other key partners including the Oceanographic Institute - Prince Albert I Foundation, the Monaco Scientific Centre, the European Polar Board (EPB), the World Economic Forum and the Ice Memory Foundation.

The symposium provided a platform to assess policies aimed at protecting polar ecosystems, and APECS' role as rapporteurs was to ensure that the perspectives and contributions of ECSs were integrated into those discussions, emphasising the importance of inclusivity and diverse representation in decision-making processes. Through several workshops, APECS members, together with SCAR and IASC fellowship recipients, took notes and summarised key findings that will contribute to the development of a comprehensive summary brochure and a roadmap for actionable recommendations on the topics discussed. These documents will serve to highlight the main conclusions and research priorities identified during the event, further amplifying the impact of the symposium's outcomes.

Aside from the discussions, the Polar Symposium 2024 was also a major opportunity to network with APECS’ partners. We had the time to engage with Advisory Committee members such as Jilda Caccavo, former APECS President; Gerlis Fugmann, former APECS Executive Director and current IASC Executive Secretary; Renuka Badhe, EPB Executive Secretary, as well as other members from partner organisations such as Eoghan Griffin, SCAR Executive Officer.

The initial insights of the Polar Symposium 2024 are already available and span from prioritising long-term investments in polar research to fostering cross-border collaboration and equitable participation in research. The recording of the symposium can be found here.


Fig. 2 - APECS members, Advisory Committee members, and the Polar Initiative Officer during one of the networking events (from left to right, back row: Gerlis Fugmann, Hugo Guímaro, Sarah Strand, Renuka Badhe, Alice Guzzi, Elena Adasheva-Klein, Salomé Mormentyn; front row: Jilda Caccavo, Lina Madaj, José Queirós, Gwenaëlle Gremion). © Philippe Fitte / FPA2

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