ArCS Arctic Challenge for Sustainability Project

Capacity Building
Supporting the development of young experts who can contribute to international research and conferences

Program for Overseas Visits by Young Researchers

Principal Investigator: Dr. Seiichi Saitoh (Hokkaido Univ.)

Principal Investigator: Dr. Sei-Ichi Saitoh (Hokkaido University)


The emerging environmental issues in the Arctic and its adjacent areas have recently been attracting public attention as issues for common efforts by international society. However, an understanding of the mechanism driven by climate change is insufficient to establish a holistic understanding of the Arctic system. It requires a trans-disciplinary grasp of the impacts of Arctic environmental changes on society, politics and the economy. As such, it is inevitable that a general yet comprehensive understanding of the cascading feedbacks of Arctic ecological changes across a wide range of points of view will be required. This is why it is equally important to encourage and forge international cooperation among researchers who can contribute to solutions for Arctic issues. In addition, it is crucial to advance actions to cultivate and fortify collaborations involving various stakeholders, such as government and industry. Therefore, it is indispensable to actively engage the next generation of young researchers who share a concerted field of vision in addressing Arctic concerns well beyond the borders of government, industry and academia.

Overview of the Activity

We will dispatch highly competitive young researchers from our country to overseas research organizations dealing with Arctic studies. Consequently, this will advance our expertise on the focus of Arctic research through the acquisition of techniques and the co-production of knowledge.

Research themes on the Arctic include the disciplines of practical sciences such as engineering, agriculture and medicine as well as the natural and social sciences. We will support foreign travel for periods from half a month up to a year, and encourage the implementation of diverse research activities. Specifically, we will support research activities that involve the following: (1) short-term plans to participate in an international conference on Arctic studies, such as ASSW (Arctic Science Summit Week), and visits to research organizations related to Arctic studies; (2) visits for data acquisition and sample analyses; (3) visits to explore novel fields of Arctic studies, including but not limited to the implementation of innovative research approaches; and (4) visits to conduct regional comparative studies. We will also clarify the importance of the overseas visit program and facilitate its realization by arranging pertinent orientations before the visit and by conducting follow-up discussions. Likewise, we will plan to establish knowledge, maintain research networks and further reinforce activities by creating opportunities to present the outcomes of studies. Young researchers who have been dispatched to overseas institutions will plan briefing sessions carried out under the ArCS program and the like to share with the ArCS researchers the knowledge and connections they acquired through international networking.

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