International Arctic Science Committee (IASC)


The PRB serves as the U.S. National Committee to the International Arctic Science Committee (IASC). IASC is a nongovernmental scientific organization established to encourage and facilitate international consultation and cooperation in all aspects of arctic research, in all countries engaged in arctic research, and in all areas of the arctic region. The mission is to encourage, facilitate, and promote basic and applied interdisciplinary research in or concerned with the Arctic at a circumarctic or international level and to provide scientific advice on arctic issues. IASC was founded in 1990 by national scientific organizations representing all the Arctic countries; the next year, membership was opened to any nation undertaking substantial research in Arctic regions. Its membership today includes 23 countries involved in all aspects of Arctic research. IASC is multidisciplinary, covering the full range of natural and social sciences. It conducts its business through the IASC Council, a Regional Board, and various Working Groups and Core Groups. The IASC Council is the policy and decisionmaking body within IASC, and its members are selected by appropriate scientific committees in the participating countries, with the Polar Research Board serving in the role of the U.S. National Committee to IASC.

At this writing, Dr. Larry Hinzman, University of Alaska Fairbanks, is the U.S. representative to the Council. The full Council meets once a year, and its Executive Committee meets in the period between Council meetings. Working Groups, composed of representatives appointed by their countries to cover specific disciplinary issues, provide the main forums form developing IASC scientific programs and activities.

For general IASC information, contact the IASC Secretariat at

Working Groups
U.S. Representation

Terrestrial Working Group

Dr. Donald A. (Skip) Walker
, University of Alaska Fairbanks
Dr. Vladimir Romanovsky, University of Alaska Fairbanks

Cryosphere Working Group

Dr.Walter Meier
, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center
Dr. Elizabeth Hunke, Los Alamos National Laboratory

Marine Working Group

Dr. Lee Cooper
, University of Maryland
Dr. Mary-Louise Timmermans, Yale University

Atmosphere Working Group

Dr. James E. Overland
, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Dr. John Cassano, University of Colorado at Boulder

Social and Human Working Group

Dr. Sven D. Haakanson
, University of Washington
Dr. Andrey Petrov, University of Northern Iowa

U.S. Delegate

Dr. Larry D. Hinzman
, University of Alaska Fairbanks

Polar Research Board Staff

Lauren Everett, Program Officer