Request for Proposals: Guest Chairing the IARPC Observing Systems Team (Deadline Sept 30)

September 15, 2020
By Liz Weinberg

The IARPC Arctic Observing System Sub-Team is inviting early career researchers[1] to guest chair future meetings. The team is inviting proposals, with a deadline of September 30, about topics that early careers could guest chair meetings about. The goal is to engage more early-career participation in envisioning future Arctic observing activities and in large-scale planning efforts.


The IARPC Arctic Observing System Sub-Team was formed to implement Research Objective 9.1 of the current IARPC Arctic Research Plan, which reads:

9.1 Enhance multi-agency participation in new and existing activities to improve best practices, coordination, and synthesis of Arctic observations toward a fully integrated interagency "U.S. Arctic Observing Network" (U.S. AON).

This team is part of the broader Environmental Intelligence Collaboration Team, which further seeks to improve the integration between user-identified needs and observing, modeling and data systems.

Over the past several years, the Arctic Observing System Sub-Team has explored different aspects of coordination and synthesis of Arctic observing efforts including: inventories of existing Arctic observations and data portals; how societal benefit frameworks (e.g., IDA 2017) can be used to support the design of an Arctic Observing Network (AON); coordinating contributions to the Arctic Observing Summit and US participation in the Sustaining Arctic Observing Networks (SAON) process; and how modeling can be used to support design of observational networks. The team has strong connections with the Arctic Data Sub Team and also periodically partners with other IARPC teams to explore dimensions of sustained observing in more disciplinary-driven contexts, such as atmospheric or oceanic science. The inclusion of Indigenous voices in network design and working towards co-design are critical topics nationally and internationally, particularly through fora like SAON. The Arctic Observing System Sub-Team has also fostered the development of and engagement of research networks in this work.


TheArctic Observing System Sub-Team co-chairs recognize the importance of early-career involvement in the design and development of the future Arctic Observing Network. For this reason, we would like to invite proposals from IARPC’s Early Career Forum on topics that could be led, as guest chairs, by early-career researchers and that would engage more early-career participation in envisioning future Arctic observing activities and in large-scale planning efforts. While the Arctic Observing System Sub-Team co-chairs will consider a wide range of topics, some example themes include: exploring Indigenous views/approaches to observing (e.g., community-driven observing), improving the integration of existing activities or Observing System Simulation Experiments (OSSEs), and the importance of observing to food security. We will dedicate our December meeting to the winning proposal/team.

Proposal should be 1-2 pages in length and touch upon the following:

  • Proposed team of early-career co-chairs, with brief bios;
  • Topic for the meeting;
  • Your strategy for diverse and inclusive chairing and convening;
  • Proposed speakers or format (e.g., lightening talks, panel discussion);
  • How this topic and collection of speakers would advance concepts of relevance to Research Objective 9.1.

The successful team will hold one preparatory planning meeting with the Arctic Observing System Sub-Team co-chairs – Will Ambrose, Sally McFarlane, and Sandy Starkweather – facilitated by Hazel Shapiro. We will use that time to support your planning process and help you to draft an agenda.

Completed proposals should be sent to Hazel Shapiro,

Important Dates

Proposals Due: September 30

Decision: October 16

Meeting Date/Time: December 16, 75 minutes

Further Reading

National Research Council. 2006. Toward an integrated Arctic Observing Network. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press.

IDA Science and Technology Policy Institute and Sustaining Arctic Observing Networks. 2017. International Arctic Observations Assessment Framework. IDA Science and Technology Policy Institute, Washington, DC, U.S.A., and Sustaining Arctic Observing Networks, Oslo, Norway, 73 pp.

[1]For the purposes of this meeting an early-career researcher is one who is navigating through the early stages of their academic and professional careers. There is no universal definition, however, an early-career researcher can include those who are currently graduate students, post docs, and early stage faculty up to 5-10 years past completion of their highest degree.

Thumbnail image: Patty Janes (TREC 2006), Courtesy of ARCUS

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