The World Meteorological Organization’s (WMO) Executive Council Panel of Experts on Polar Observations, Research and Services (EC-PORS) third session was held in Sodankylä, Finland, 6-8 February, 2012. In this meeting, the experts discussed the future of the polar meteorological research and services. EC-PORS is making an effort to bring the scientific projects and communities closer together to meet the needs of end-users of weather and climate data. From the point of view of an early career scientist the meeting was interesting, and confirmed that there is plenty of work for us, early career scientists, to do in the future. APECS sent a list of questions and recommendations for EC-PORS to consider. These questions covered two main themes: networking and funding.
EC-PORS believes that young scientists are very important and there should be actions to educate and support future polar scientists. At the moment, there are some mobility programs to fund young scientists, but it was pointed out that APECS needs sustainable funding. In the meeting, it was mentioned that for some organizations it is, however, practically easier to offer own workshops etc. than for early career scientists than to sponsor other (for example APECS) workshops. EC-PORS members were interested to become mentors for APECS, so hopefully several of them will join us soon. The discussions of EC-PORS also revealed new possibilities for young scientists; for example Argentina does not have young scientists in the Polar sciences but sees the need for a new generation.