National Academies Press: OpenBook
Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2004. A Vision for the International Polar Year 2007-2008. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11013.
×

A VISION FOR THE INTERNATIONAL POLAR YEAR 2007-2008

U.S. National Committee for the International Polar Year 2007-2008

Polar Research Board

Division on Earth and Life Studies

NATIONAL RESEARCH COUNCIL OF THE NATIONAL ACADEMIES

THE NATIONAL ACADEMIES PRESS
Washington, D.C. www.nap.edu

Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2004. A Vision for the International Polar Year 2007-2008. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11013.
×

THE NATIONAL ACADEMIES PRESS
500 Fifth Street, N.W. Washington, DC 20001

NOTICE: The project that is the subject of this report was approved by the Governing Board of the National Research Council, whose members are drawn from the councils of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the Institute of Medicine. The members of the committee responsible for the report were chosen for their special competences and with regard for appropriate balance.

Support for this project was provided with institutional funds from the National Academies.

International Standard Book Number 0-309-09212-4 (Book)

International Standard Book Number 0-309-53203-5 (PDF)

Cover image: Glacier edge. © 1995. PhotoDisc Inc. All rights reserved. Images © 1995 Tony Ise.

Additional copies of this report are available from the
National Academies Press,
500 Fifth Street, N.W., Lockbox 285, Washington, DC 20055; (800) 624-6242 or (202) 334-3313 (in the Washington metropolitan area); Internet, http://www.nap.edu.

Copyright 2004 by the National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.

Printed in the United States of America.

Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2004. A Vision for the International Polar Year 2007-2008. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11013.
×

THE NATIONAL ACADEMIES

Advisers to the Nation on Science, Engineering, and Medicine

The National Academy of Sciences is a private, nonprofit, self-perpetuating society of distinguished scholars engaged in scientific and engineering research, dedicated to the furtherance of science and technology and to their use for the general welfare. Upon the authority of the charter granted to it by the Congress in 1863, the Academy has a mandate that requires it to advise the federal government on scientific and technical matters. Dr. Bruce M. Alberts is president of the National Academy of Sciences.

The National Academy of Engineering was established in 1964, under the charter of the National Academy of Sciences, as a parallel organization of outstanding engineers. It is autonomous in its administration and in the selection of its members, sharing with the National Academy of Sciences the responsibility for advising the federal government. The National Academy of Engineering also sponsors engineering programs aimed at meeting national needs, encourages education and research, and recognizes the superior achievements of engineers. Dr. Wm. A. Wulf is president of the National Academy of Engineering.

The Institute of Medicine was established in 1970 by the National Academy of Sciences to secure the services of eminent members of appropriate professions in the examination of policy matters pertaining to the health of the public. The Institute acts under the responsibility given to the National Academy of Sciences by its congressional charter to be an adviser to the federal government and, upon its own initiative, to identify issues of medical care, research, and education. Dr. Harvey V. Fineberg is president of the Institute of Medicine.

The National Research Council was organized by the National Academy of Sciences in 1916 to associate the broad community of science and technology with the Academy’s purposes of furthering knowledge and advising the federal government. Functioning in accordance with general policies determined by the Academy, the Council has become the principal operating agency of both the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering in providing services to the government, the public, and the scientific and engineering communities. The Council is administered jointly by both Academies and the Institute of Medicine. Dr. Bruce M. Alberts and Dr. Wm. A. Wulf are chair and vice chair, respectively, of the National Research Council.

www.national-academies.org

Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2004. A Vision for the International Polar Year 2007-2008. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11013.
×

This page intentionally left blank.

Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2004. A Vision for the International Polar Year 2007-2008. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11013.
×

U.S. NATIONAL COMMITTEE FOR THE INTERNATIONAL POLAR YEAR 2007-2008

MARY ALBERT (Chair),

Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory, Hanover, New Hampshire

ROBERT BINDSCHADLER,

National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Greenbelt, Maryland

CECILIA BITZ,

University of Washington, Seattle

JERRY BOWEN,

CBS News, Los Angeles, California

DAVID BROMWICH,

The Ohio State University, Columbus

RICHARD GLENN,

Arctic Slope Regional Corporation, Barrow, Alaska

JACQUELINE GREBMEIER,

University of Tennessee, Knoxville

JOHN KELLEY,

University of Alaska, Fairbanks

IGOR KRUPNIK,

Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C.

LOUIS LANZEROTTI,

Bell Laboratories, Lucent Technologies, Murray Hill, New Jersey

PETER SCHLOSSER,

Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, Palisades, New York

PHILIP M. SMITH,

McGeary & Smith, Santa Fe, New Mexico

GEORGE SOMERO,

Stanford University, Pacific Grove, California

CRISTINA TAKACS-VESBACH,

University of New Mexico, Albuquerque

GUNTER WELLER,

University of Alaska, Fairbanks

DOUGLAS WIENS,

Washington University, St. Louis, Missouri

Ex-Officio Members

MAHLON C. KENNICUTT II,

Texas A&M University, College Station

ROBIN BELL,

Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory of Columbia University, Palisades, New York

PATRICK WEBBER,

Michigan State University, East Lansing

TERRY WILSON,

The Ohio State University, Columbus

NRC Staff

SHELDON DROBOT, Study Director,

Polar Research Board

CHRIS ELFRING, Director,

Polar Research Board

KRISTEN AVERYT,

Christine Mirzayan Intern,

Polar Research Board

SARAH CAPOTE, Project Assistant,

Ocean Studies Board

RACHAEL SHIFLETT, Senior Project Assistant,

Polar Research Board

Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2004. A Vision for the International Polar Year 2007-2008. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11013.
×

POLAR RESEARCH BOARD

ROBIN BELL (Chair),

Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, Palisades, New York

MARY ALBERT,

Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory, Hanover, New Hampshire

AKHIL DATTA-GUPTA,

Texas A&M University, College Station

GEORGE DENTON,

University of Maine, Orono

RICHARD GLENN,

Arctic Slope Regional Corporation, Barrow, Alaska

JACQUELINE GREBMEIER,

University of Tennessee, Knoxville

HENRY P. HUNTINGTON,

Huntington Consulting, Eagle River, Alaska

DAVID KARL,

University of Hawaii, Honolulu

MAHLON C. KENNICUTT II,

Texas A&M University, College Station

(ex officio)

AMANDA LYNCH,

University of Colorado, Boulder

W. BERRY LYONS,

Byrd Polar Research Center, Columbus, Ohio

ROBIE MACDONALD,

Fisheries and Oceans, Canada, Institute of Ocean Sciences, British Columbia

MILES MCPHEE,

McPhee Research Company, Naches, Washington

CAROLE L. SEYFRIT,

Old Dominion University, Norfolk, Virginia

JOHN WALSH,

University of Alaska, Fairbanks

PATRICK WEBBER,

Michigan State University, East Lansing

(ex officio)

TERRY WILSON,

The Ohio State University, Columbus

(ex officio)

WARREN ZAPOL,

Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston

NRC Staff

CHRIS ELFRING, Director

SHELDON DROBOT, Program Officer

RACHAEL SHIFLETT, Senior Project Assistant

Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2004. A Vision for the International Polar Year 2007-2008. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11013.
×

Preface

The research ideas jointly voiced by many scientists from many nations for the International Polar Year (IPY) 2007-2008 hold potential discoveries that are significant to all inhabitants of this planet. The large-scale environmental changes currently observed in the polar regions are significant, accelerating, and globally connected. They are unlike any in recorded history, yet we do not know how or why they are occurring. Polar regions hold unique information on Earth’s past climate history, for both the recent and the distant past. They play key roles in many of Earth’s linked systems, from the center of the Earth to the center of the Sun. Exploration of little-known realms and processes facilitates discoveries on unanswered questions that span all disciplines.

The IPY 2007-2008 follows a tradition of international endeavors. More than a century ago, in 1882-1883, scientists around the world united in an ambitious effort to explore and conduct scientific research in the polar regions. This effort set a precedent for international science cooperation: we can achieve more, at greater efficiency, if we work together. Fifty years later, a second IPY in 1932-1933 led to major scientific advances. In 1957-1958 the science community coalesced around the most ambitious effort to date: the International Geophysical Year (IGY), where 67 participating nations left an amazing legacy of discoveries and technological accomplishments that still affect our lives today. Nearly fifty years have passed since the IGY and once again scientists around the world are eager to organize an international science campaign that expands the boundaries of our understanding of the polar regions and their key roles in the Earth’s linked systems. This effort is focused on the polar regions because environmental changes currently observed there are significant, accelerating, and globally connected; the polar regions hold unique information on Earth’s past climate history; they are growing in economic and geopolitical importance; the harsh conditions and remoteness have hampered scientific exploration in comparison with the midlatitudes and tropics; and the polar regions are a unique vantage point for many terrestrial and solar studies.

Page viii Cite
Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2004. A Vision for the International Polar Year 2007-2008. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11013.
×

Planning for IPY 2007-2008 has evolved in a bottom-up fashion, with scientists in many different countries coming together to create a vision for what the next IPY might accomplish. The committee owes its thanks to many scientists in a number of countries, including the United States, who led the informal discussions that catalyzed IPY planning. The effort moved from brainstorming to official endorsement by the International Council for Science (ICSU), the World Meteorological Organization, and numerous other organizations in barely a year so that now, in the spring of 2004, nations around the globe are making concrete plans to participate.

In the United States, planning has evolved quickly. In the winter of 2002 the Polar Research Board (PRB) of the National Academies held a one-day workshop on the IPY that involved both U.S. and international scientists. The chair of the PRB, Dr. Robin Bell, began working closely with the director of the British Antarctic Survey, Dr. Christopher Rapley, to set in motion a chain of discussions that gathered ever-growing scientific support. Under their leadership, the ICSU established an IPY Planning Group in the fall of 2003. This group created a preliminary report to ICSU that led to official endorsement of the IPY and set in motion the formation of national committees devoted to IPY planning in countries around the world.

To coordinate the U.S. scientific community’s efforts in identifying potential contributions to IPY and to provide a means for interaction with the ICSU IPY Planning Group, the PRB formed the U.S. National Committee for the International Polar Year in the summer of 2003. Everyone on this committee has generously volunteered their time to attend planning meetings, give presentations at professional meetings, compile information from the community, and write this report. Committee members have nurtured discussions with federal departments and agencies conducting or sponsoring research, recognizing that the success of the IPY will hinge on productive dialogue between national and international research communities and organizations. This bottom-up approach has resulted in a broad base of support both within the scientific communities and in the agencies for the next IPY. The committee’s website at http://us-ipy.org is updated regularly to announce upcoming events and to make opportunities for input readily available.

This report reflects a vision for U.S. participation in the IPY 2007-2008. It articulates a framework for the science ideas submitted by many individuals and research communities in the United States for the next IPY. These ideas are not being fully addressed by current research programs. Our intent is not to replace currently funded research but rather to lay the foundations to elevate future discoveries to a new level. The outcomes from research foundations laid in 2007-2008 hold the potential to guide important decisions for society in the twenty-first century. The committee wrote this report to convey the members’ thinking to decision makers and the public, so that they can become engaged and excited about the possibilities. In addition it is hoped that many people—teachers, scout leaders, museum directors, filmmakers, journalists, parents, and students—will start to think about how they might become involved. The committee envisions that IPY 2007-2008 will initiate a new era in polar science by establishing the ongoing intellectual commitment, international research programs, and observation systems needed to fully understand the polar regions and their key roles in the global system.

I thank PRB Director Chris Elfring for initiating this study and the National Academies for supplying funding. Study Director Sheldon Drobot provided tireless support and enthusiasm; intern Kirsten Averyt inspired us to speak to the next genera-

Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2004. A Vision for the International Polar Year 2007-2008. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11013.
×

tion; and staff members Ann Carlisle, Jodi Bachim, and Rachael Shiflett provided excellent assistance. Again, I express my deep appreciation to the scientists on the committee who are giving their time and energy to plan this important activity. I look forward to increasing interaction with my international colleagues, as the ideas submitted within our nations are shared among nations and mechanisms are established to move us from planning to implementation. I believe we will leave behind a legacy of accomplishments worthy of the traditions set by previous IPYs and the IGY.

Mary Albert, Chair

U.S. National Committee for the International Polar Year 2007-2008

Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2004. A Vision for the International Polar Year 2007-2008. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11013.
×

This page intentionally left blank.

Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2004. A Vision for the International Polar Year 2007-2008. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11013.
×

Acknowledgments

This report has been reviewed in draft form by individuals chosen for their diverse perspectives and technical expertise, in accordance with procedures approved by the National Research Council’s Report Review Committee. The purpose of this independent review is to provide candid and critical comments that will assist the institution in making its published report as sound as possible and to ensure that the report meets institutional standards for objectivity, evidence, and responsiveness to the study charge. The review comments and draft manuscript remain confidential to protect the integrity of the deliberative process. We wish to thank the following individuals for their review of this report:

Richard Alley, Pennsylvania State University

Sridhar Anandakrishnan, Pennsylvania State University

Frank Carsey, NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory

Bert Boyer, University of Alaska-Fairbanks

Lou Codispoti, University of Maryland

Robert Corell, American Meteorological Society and Arctic Climate Impact Assessment

Vladimir Papitashvili, University of Michigan

Although the reviewers listed above have provided constructive comments and suggestions, they were not asked to endorse the report’s conclusions or recommendations, nor did they see the final draft of the report before its release. The review of this report was overseen by Deborah Meese, U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center Cold Regions Research and Engineering Lab. Appointed by the National Research Council, she was responsible for making certain that an independent examination of this report was carried out in accordance with institutional procedures and

Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2004. A Vision for the International Polar Year 2007-2008. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11013.
×

that all review comments were carefully considered. Responsibility for the final content of this report rests entirely with the authoring committee and the institution.

The committee extends a special acknowledgment to Patricia McAdams for inter-viewing polar scientists and bringing their stories to life. Ms. McAdams also provided much of the text for the sidebars in this report.

Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2004. A Vision for the International Polar Year 2007-2008. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11013.
×
PageR1
Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2004. A Vision for the International Polar Year 2007-2008. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11013.
×
PageR2
Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2004. A Vision for the International Polar Year 2007-2008. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11013.
×
PageR3
Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2004. A Vision for the International Polar Year 2007-2008. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11013.
×
PageR4
Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2004. A Vision for the International Polar Year 2007-2008. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11013.
×
PageR5
Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2004. A Vision for the International Polar Year 2007-2008. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11013.
×
PageR6
Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2004. A Vision for the International Polar Year 2007-2008. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11013.
×
PageR7
Page viii Cite
Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2004. A Vision for the International Polar Year 2007-2008. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11013.
×
PageR8
Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2004. A Vision for the International Polar Year 2007-2008. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11013.
×
PageR9
Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2004. A Vision for the International Polar Year 2007-2008. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11013.
×
PageR10
Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2004. A Vision for the International Polar Year 2007-2008. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11013.
×
PageR11
Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2004. A Vision for the International Polar Year 2007-2008. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11013.
×
PageR12
Page xiii Cite
Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2004. A Vision for the International Polar Year 2007-2008. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11013.
×
PageR13
Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2004. A Vision for the International Polar Year 2007-2008. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11013.
×
PageR14
Next: Executive Summary »
A Vision for the International Polar Year 2007-2008 Get This Book
×
MyNAP members save 10% online.
Login or Register to save!
Download Free PDF

In 2007-2008, many nations around the world will host an intense, coordinated field campaign of polar observations, research, and analysis called the "International Polar Year." This report presents an overview of potential science themes, enabling technologies, and public outreach opportunities that can be used to focus International Polar Year on societal needs. The committee recommends that the U.S. scientific community and participating agencies use this opportunity to better understand environmental change and variability in the polar regions; explore new scientific frontiers ranging from the molecular to the planetary scales; and engage the public through varied educations and outreach activities.

  1. ×

    Welcome to OpenBook!

    You're looking at OpenBook, NAP.edu's online reading room since 1999. Based on feedback from you, our users, we've made some improvements that make it easier than ever to read thousands of publications on our website.

    Do you want to take a quick tour of the OpenBook's features?

    No Thanks Take a Tour »
  2. ×

    Show this book's table of contents, where you can jump to any chapter by name.

    « Back Next »
  3. ×

    ...or use these buttons to go back to the previous chapter or skip to the next one.

    « Back Next »
  4. ×

    Jump up to the previous page or down to the next one. Also, you can type in a page number and press Enter to go directly to that page in the book.

    « Back Next »
  5. ×

    Switch between the Original Pages, where you can read the report as it appeared in print, and Text Pages for the web version, where you can highlight and search the text.

    « Back Next »
  6. ×

    To search the entire text of this book, type in your search term here and press Enter.

    « Back Next »
  7. ×

    Share a link to this book page on your preferred social network or via email.

    « Back Next »
  8. ×

    View our suggested citation for this chapter.

    « Back Next »
  9. ×

    Ready to take your reading offline? Click here to buy this book in print or download it as a free PDF, if available.

    « Back Next »
Stay Connected!