Monday May 29, 2017

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Open Isaaffik

A new Danish website will seek to make research easier by allowing scholars to tap into existing information about the region
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Danish officials will today launch a new website today aimed at improving co-operation between Arctic researchers in Denmark, Greenland and the Faroe Islands in order to facilitate improved research into the changes facing the region.

The website, Isaaffik, meaning ‘gateway’ in Greenlandic, will be maintained by the Arctic Research Centre at Aarhus University and is intended to to make it easier for those involved in the field to share information about research, education, consultancy and logistics.

“We may be a small nation, but the Kingdom of Denmark is a major power in Arctic research, and we must be able to act at the forefront of the Arctic scene,” said Kurt Nielsen, vice-dean of Aarhus University.

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Part of the rationale behind the website, according to the Higher Education and Science Ministry, another of the project’s backers, will be to allow scientists and other academics interested in conducting research in the Danish Arctic to tap into existing information.

“Oil, minerals and possible new shipping routes contribute to the political awareness of the Arctic, but it is expensive and cumbersome to operate in an area where there is only a limited infrastructure,” a ministry statement said.

Creation of the site comes as climate change increasingly presents new opportunities and challenges for the region and its people.

Information on the website is available to the public, while scholars in the Kingdom of Denmark will be permitted to create accounts that allow them to post information.

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Other organisations involved with the project include the Danish Meteorological Institute, the Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland, the Greenland Institute of Natural Resources, the Technical University of Denmark, the University of Copenhagen and the University of Southern Denmark.

The Danish military also contributed to the development of the concept behind the website.