16 Fulbright Arctic Initiative Scholars and two lead scholars from Canada, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Russia, Sweden, and the United States had a one-week plenary meeting in Oulu, Finland, 8-12 February 2016.

In the opening session of the symposium, Rector Jouko Niinimäki from University of Oulu, presented Strategy of University of Oulu 2016-2020 with a theme Science with Arctic attitude. Since Finland will take a chairmanship of Arctic Council in 2017 after the United States, he addressed that University of Oulu would be willing to collaborate and support the implementation of Finland’s Arctic strategy.

Ambassador of the United States of America to Finland, Charles C. Adams said that the US government is already working closely with the Finnish government and wished to continue their dialogues, priorities and goals smoothly to the next chairmanship, Finland next year.

In the first panel discussion, Fulbright Arctic Initiative Scholars gave presentations on the three Fulbright Arctic Initiative themes: Energy, Water and Health and Infrastructure.

In the Energy part, Gregory Poelzer from University of Saskatchewan spoke that the future energy production would go through indigenous land and this would be a positive change.

In the Water part, Øystein Varpe from University Centre in Svalbard spoke about sea ice changes and impacts on Arctic marine ecosystems. He gave a different but positive perspective of decrease sea ice in the Arctic. He explained that if there is less sea ice and more lights, there will be more abundant productions at based on the food level.

In the second panel discussion, invited panels discussed about ‘Presenting the Arctic to the world: The Role of Scholars and the Media in Translating Science to the Public’. Pirita Näkkäläjärvi delivered a massage to universities, “Please let scientists and researchers speak directly to the media”.

The symposium has gathered some 50 scholars, Arctic experts, applied researchers, and 130 public. The final meeting of the Fulbright Arctic Initiative 2015-2016 will be held in Washington, DC, 24-28 October, 2016.

Click here to view the whole report about the Fulbright Arctic Initiative (FAI) Program one-week plenary meeting.

Read more about the Fulbright Arctic Initiative.