Association of Polar Early Career Scientists

terrestrial ecologyEcological research in polar regions explores interactions between various groups of organisms, as well as relations that they have with respect to their environment. Despite the apparent harshness of the Arctic and Antarctic, many creatures are well adapted to living "at the edge". Ecosystems of the tundra biom are not as simple and primitive as it may seem!

Polar organisms are now facing a threat much more difficult to cope with than extreme cold, drought and darkness - a rapidly changing climate. Increasing air temperature causes melting of glaciers and permafrost, changes in water relation and growing season. These changes affect all ecosystem components. New ecosystems are forming in areas uncovered from under the ice, whereas at the southern borders of the Arctic shrub and tree expansion is underway, reducing the extent of the tundra. Great research effort is put to monitor the speed and direction of these changes, to provide effective conservation of the fragile tundra ecosystems.

This page was put together by Maja Lisowska.

Research Projects and Initiatives

Academic Courses


Looking for advice on research ideas or career paths? Ask a mentor!

APECS mentors in the field of terrestial ecology include:

  • Andres Barbosa (Senior Researcher, Natural History Museum, CSIC, Madrid, Spain)
  • Greg Henry (Professor, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada)

For more information, go to the Mentor webpage

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

APECS Directorate Sponsor
AWI WortBildmarke Farbe RGB
Further Sponsors and Partners for APECS projects, activities and events