First CHARTER General Assembly Approaches

The CHARTER project is now entering its second year and this makes it time for our 1st General Assembly! This will be held in Helsinki, Finland, October 4-7 and will be a hybrid in person/virtual meeting but we are really excited, and thankful, to note that over 40 people will be in attendance, with about 20 people joining virtually.

With an almost entirely virtual launch of the project last year, and a rather truncated field work season, we are thrilled that we will at last be able to meet many of the project participants in person. We all could all do with decreasing our screen time! Connecting virtually has never been easier and has opened up new possibilities for co-work across boundaries and borders, but trans-disciplinary work is especially challenging and requires extended in person conversations. Not only do people need to get to know eachother, they need to understand the frameworks in which other disciplines operate and the languages and terminologies that can be used collectively. The Assembly will go some way to bridging the gaps that the lack of in person meetings over the last year have created.

Despite a lot of practical project management content to get through, there is much science to discuss, most especially on the interchanges and synergies between the different work packages. While field work has not been as extensive as perhaps many of us would wish, progress has been made in some key areas of study, including Finnish Lapland and Finnmark, Norway and on the Yamal Peninsula in north West Russia.

For obvious reasons It has not been possible to hold larger scale public participatory meetings or workshops as originally envisaged, but some smaller scale consultations have taken place in multiple locations and it is hoped that we can build on these engagements on a broader scale next year.

Data is still being analysed, and some early papers have already been published from Work Package 4, with more to come this year.

This 1st General Assembly will start with a welcome by the project leader, Bruce Forbes, and greetings from Alberto Zocchi (Horizon 2020 project liason), and Kirsi Latola (EU Polar Cluster and PolarNet2). After this, introductions and field work stories and more will complete the first day.

Day 2 and 3 will be sessions by all the Work Package leaders, many of whom will attending personally and round up with a special session on communications, outreach and the creation of a CHARTER inspired science exhibit at the Arktikum Science Centre, Rovaniemi.

A final version of the programme is available on the internal page of the CHARTER website. The Assembly is for project participants only, but we will be reporting outcomes and stories from the Assembly over the coming weeks, including a new CHARTER newsletter to which anyone can subscribe, details to follow.

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