Last week I attended the 2019 UK Arctic Science Conference, the sixth in a series of biannual conferences sponsored by the UK Arctic Office and hosted this year by Loughborough University. It was a pleasure to see some familiar faces there—not only from the UK but also from Russia—to make many new acquaintances, and to enjoy three full days of Arctic research.
The conference was truly interdisciplinary. Not only did the programme cover the full range of Arctic science—atmospheric, terrestrial, marine, cryospheric, social and human—each panel included presentations spanning more than one of these fields. And since there were only a few dozen presentations, panels could run in series rather than parallel, giving attendees the chance to hear all presentations across all fields.
So it was to a diverse audience that I was able to introduce my secondary-school Model Arctic Council (MAC) programmes—Norwich MAC and MAC Bilbao. My presentation largely followed a similar one that I gave to the 4th Polar Educators International Workshop earlier this year, including a brief overview of my MAC initiatives, the results of participant surveys that show both MACs are meeting their educational objectives, and an indication of future plans. A copy of my presentation is available for download from this website.
On the last day of the conference, Loughborough University invited secondary-school pupils to visit the university, try their hands at Arctic-related scientific experiments, and ask questions of Arctic experts. I’m grateful to the conference convenors to invite me to take part in this outreach effort, which was one of the conference highlights.
Looking forward now to the 7th UK Arctic Science Conference in 2021!