Science Plan

Download the Science Plan

The Arctic is undergoing rapid transformations that have brought the Arctic Ocean to the top 
of international political agendas. Predicting future conditions of the Arctic Ocean system 
requires scientific knowledge of its present status as well as a process-based understanding of the mechanisms of change.

The Arctic in Rapid Transition (ART) initiative is an integrative, international, interdisciplinary pan-Arctic program to study changes and feedbacks among the physical and biogeochemical components of the Arctic Ocean and their ultimate impacts on biological productivity. The goal of ART is to develop priorities for Arctic marine science over the next decade. Three overarching questions form the basis of the ART science plan:
  1. How were past transitions in sea ice connected to energy flows, elemental cycling, biological diversity and productivity, and how do these compare to present and projected shifts?
  2. How will biogeochemical cycling respond to transitions in terrestrial, gateway and shelf-to-basin fluxes?
  3. How do Arctic Ocean organisms and ecosystems respond to environmental transitions including temperature, stratification, ice conditions, and pH?
The integrated approach developed to answer the ART key scientific questions comprises:
  • process studies and observations to reveal mechanisms,
  • the establishment of links to existing monitoring programs,
  • the evaluation of geological records to extend time-series, and
  • the improvement of our modeling capabilities of climate-induced transitions.