Investment Portal of the Arctic Zone of the Russian Federation

The Arctic—Territory of Research: Fundamental science for the advancement of the AZRF

The inaugural Congress of Scientists on Interdisciplinary Research has commenced in Yakutsk

26 october 2023

The inaugural Arctic Congress 'The Arctic—Territory of Strategic Research' began in Yakutsk on 23 November. At the federal research centre 'Yakutsk Research Centre of the Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences,' scientists from across the nation convened to discuss the future of interdisciplinary research aimed at advancing the Russian Arctic region. Among the invited guests are esteemed specialists from the Russian Academy of Sciences, the Ministry of Science and Higher Education, as well as from Arctic and Far Eastern federal research centres.

The primary objective of the congress is to outline areas of scientific work that will eventually yield practical outcomes. Examples of such integration of fundamental science and practice include the construction of carbon polygons that monitor the atmospheric conditions across Russia, scientific research conducted at the Severny Polyus-41 platform and other similar projects. These are highly costly, extensive and intricate initiatives that necessitate participation from both the government and private sector. While they don't generate immediate profits and seldom recoup their costs in a short timeframe, they lay the groundwork for the growth of entire economic sectors. For instance, the permafrost map currently under development will enable the prediction of soil behaviour across approximately 60% of Russia's territory. Comprehensive research will allow for climate change tracking, and with a large data pool, scientists will be able to develop new technologies for adapting to global shifts. In Norilsk, some houses already have special cooling units that freeze the ground near their foundations. The thawing of the 'eternal permafrost' compromises the structural integrity of buildings, leading to their gradual deterioration and posing a threat to their inhabitants. Building another Norilsk swiftly is unfeasible, hence the necessity to preserve the existing one using genuine 'climate technologies.'

Beyond climate issues, the congress also discussed the use of scientific research for the economic advancement of the AZRF.


'In this congress, we will be discussing the economic development of the Arctic, creating sustainable employment for locals and striving for a balance between economic growth and preservation of natural resources to ensure the prosperity of all Arctic inhabitants,' stated Olga Balabakina, Deputy Prime Minister of the region, during the event's inauguration.


Looking ahead, there are plans to foster a strong integration of the scientific community in addressing the strategic challenges faced by the Polar region. This encompasses logistics, energy, new manufacturing and fundamental research that not only devises solutions to current issues but also identifies new challenges.

In the near future, several scientific centres, science cities and research stations will emerge in the Russian Arctic, serving as pillars for the advancement of fundamental science in the AZRF regions. These include the Snezhinka station in YNAA, the Arkticheskaya Zvezda campus in Pomorie, the ongoing Severny Polyus-41' platform project, among other similar initiatives. With the active participation of students and professionals in Arctic research at major industrial enterprises and regional research institutes, Russian science is progressively becoming a key driver of AZRF development.

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