IASC Action Groups

Actions Groups are established by the IASC Council to provide strategic advice concerning both long-term activities and urgent needs. They are expert groups typically with a one or two year mandate and conclude their task with a report to the Council.

IASC is currently maintaining the following Action Groups:


Action Group on Carbon Footprint

Recognizing that, “Rapid transformations occurring in the Arctic are affecting the entire Earth system, its climate and weather extremes through increased temperatures and the continuing loss of sea ice cover, glacier retreat and changing snow and permafrost conditions,” (ICARP-III) and that these transformations are the direct result of anthropogenic carbon emissions, and acknowledging the contradictions inherent in IASC’s science and some of IASC’s actions, the IASC Council has requested draft Terms of Reference for an IASC Action Group on Carbon Footprint for their consideration. The aim for this Action Group is to start work in fall 2020.

Contact: IASC Secretariat


Past Action Groups have included:

Action Group on Indigenous Involvement (2017-2020)

In light of the commitments made through the ICARP process and strategic planning, IASC is moving forward with these goals of better involving Indigenous peoples and incorporating Indigenous/traditional knowledge. Establishing an Action Group on Indigenous Involvement should lead to concrete recommendations to the IASC Council that will help IASC achieve its goals. The AGII report was greatfully received and approved by the IASC Council in March 2020. IASC will proceed with consideration and implementation of the AGII recommendations.


Bylaws Action Group (2018-2020)

Good governance is important for the successful functioning of any (scientific) organization. Over the past decade, IASC has kept to its Founding Articles while modernizing its operations. In establishing the new Secretariat, it was identified that many IASC processes are not fully documented or formalized. In recognition of this shortcoming, this Action Group formalized IASC guiding and procedural documents and provide recommendations to align them, fill gaps, and recommend updates to one unified IASC Handbook ver. 23 March 2020.


Arctic Science and Business/Industry Cooperation (ASBIC) (2017-2019)

This Action Group will facilitate discussions on how Arctic science can facilitate business and how business can facilitate Arctic science, whether through financing, data, or collaboration. In particular, this group is convening sessions at the 2017 Arctic Circle Assembly and 2018 Arctic Circle Assembly.


Communicating Arctic Science to Policymakers (CASP) (2017-2018)

To reinforce IASC’s commitment to providing objective and independent scientific advice on issues of science in the Arctic and communicating scientific information to the public, in April 2017 IASC Council decided to establish the action group on Communicating Arctic Science to Policy Makers (CASP). Based on the review of the objectives and activities of IASC and its Working Groups, CASP is tasked with the development of a set of recommendations for IASC to enhance its provision of advice on issues of science in the Arctic and the communication of scientific knowledge to policymakers. Read more about the CASP Members here.


SCAR/IASC Bipolar Action Group (BipAG) (2008-2012)

The group was jointly established with the Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research (SCAR) with the initial mandate to explore options for effective cooperation concerning bipolar issues and the development of mechanisms to nurture the International Polar Year legacy. The two-year mandate for BipAG was prolonged in 2010 and BipAG II concentrated first and foremost on bipolar scientific opportunities of cooperation.


Action Group on Geosciences (2012-2013)

This Action Group had been mandated to provide strategic advice to the IASC Council and WGs on both long-term opportunities and priorities in the field of Geoscience research in a broader sense.

The Action Group developed a report, including a set of recommendations, which was presented to the IASC Working Groups and IASC Council.


Data Policy Action Group (2012-2013)

The group was formed to develop and recommend a data policy, including steps toward implementation of the policy, that to provide guidance for IASC supported activities. The Action Group developed a "Statement of Principles and Practices for Arctic Data Management" which was presented to IASC Council and formally approved on 16 April 2013.