IASC 25 years - Page 108

by Te r r y C a l l a g h a n Broadening Cooperation and Inclusiveness Many science initiatives and organizations existed prior to IASC. Some of them were disciplinary in scope and had earlier covered only a part of the “Rain-dance” for Meetings and Organizations Arctic. «We all know that hundreds if not thousands of IASC, with its broad mission, faced the challenge of North American Indians came together to dance inviting and motivating them for a broader cooper- ritualistically to make it rain. Of course it did not. ation. Such an effort is not accomplished overnight. Too many scientists come together at meetings to However, initiatives such as the ASSW, ICARP I-III, discuss and plan, but the implementation does not SAON, ACIA, etc. presented opportunities to further follow: It has been a rain-dance. this broad cooperation (see Chapter 4). A central recommendation of the IASC Review 2006-2007 My privilege in life has been to lead a network of was “Positioning IASC as THE focal point for arctic research station managers and others whose job research.” Today IASC is very well positioned to be it is to help others and each other. This resulted in this focal point, and by partnering with many Arctic, the formation of a network of friends (INTERACT) bipolar and global organizations over the last few that is growing at a great rate. The younger gene- years, it has come a long way toward achieving this ration will prosper if they network as friends rather goal. than colleagues who can help them implement research plans, and prevent the rain dance. They Since approximately 50% of the Arctic region lies need the old generation to help identify funding within Russian territory, IASC should continue to and increased visibility opportunities. » stimulate Russian scientists to cooperate with scientists of other Arctic and non-Arctic countries. IASC provides the opportunity to set up common research projects in the Arctic. International Cooperation Leads to Mutual Benefits and Scientific Progress The basic reason for engaging in international cooperation is that it brings benefits to the participants. Some IASC member countries recognize the benefits of participation and increase their endeavors, while for others there is hesitation or neutrality. Why the difference? The answer lies in national organization and preparations. National organizations adhering to IASC are, ideally, expected to have a national arctic (or polar) sciences committee covering all fields of polar science. This national committee should be proactive in discussing projects/programs/issues that would benefit from international cooperation. The national Council member has the opportunity to present national proposals at a Council meeting. Being a national Council member means that you have to be 107 Appendices 00 06 The IASC Evolution and Lessons Learned by Te r r y C a l l a g h a n Back to the Future « I have had the personal experience of running the Back to the Future project in which old guys took young students into the field to find their old research sites from 40-50 years ago, to see how the environment had changed and to hand over site-stewardship and data to the next generation. When asked what I would do differently if I had my time again, my answer was to place my study sites in valleys and not at the mountain summits. When I started, I did not think ahead to old age, so my message to the next generation is to think ahead. »