SIOS vision, mission, and objectives

The vision of SIOS

We will be the leading long-term observing system in the Arctic to serve Earth system science and society

The mission of SIOS

SIOS is an international partnership of research institutions studying the environment and climate in and around Svalbard to

  • Develop an efficient observing system
  • Share technology, experience and data
  • Close knowledge gaps
  • Decrease the environmental footprint of science
The objective of SIOS

SIOS is a collaborative effort to develop and maintain a regional observational system for long-term measurements in and around Svalbard, addressing Earth System Science questions related to Global Change.

The observing system and research facilities offered by SIOS build on the extensive observation capacity and diverse world-class research infrastructure provided by many institutions already established in Svalbard. This includes a substantial capability for utilising remote sensing resources to complement ground-based observations. From this solid foundation, SIOS envisions a significant contribution to the systematic development of new methods and observational design in Svalbard. This knowledge can advance other observational networks in the Arctic and elsewhere.

SIOS is aiming at more efficient use and better integration of the observing system based on a distributed data management system, an open access program that includes logistical support, as well as training and education activities. Working groups, task forces and other SIOS components pursue these aims in direct and structured dialogue with scientists, user groups, policy-makers and other porters of societal and scientific needs.

SIOS brings observations together into a coherent and integrated observational programme that will be sustained. Thus, SIOS offers unique opportunities for research and the acquisition of fundamental knowledge about global environmental change. SIOS focuses on processes and their interactions between the different spheres, i.e., biosphere, geosphere, atmosphere, cryosphere, and hydrosphere. The core observational programme of SIOS provides the research community with systematic observations that are sustained over time, yet dynamic enough to be adapted as new methods appear or society poses new questions.

SIOS Diversity Statement

SIOS believes that a diverse and inclusive environment provides a variety of viewpoints and is a prerequisite to solving the grand societal challenges that SIOS aims to address. Personal identity should not be a barrier to one's full participation and success in science in general and SIOS activities in particular. The leadership structures in SIOS should reflect the community that we serve.

SIOS recognises that insufficient effort has been made to ensure equal gender representation in our working groups and committees, as well as among the speakers and teachers at our conferences, workshops, webinars and training courses, Specifically, we pledge to:

  1. Have a zero-tolerance policy for harassment and abuse at SIOS events, and ensure all attendees know who to contact if they experience unwanted behaviour.
  2. Ensure that no gender exceeds 60% of any invitation list or working group composition.
  3. Promote SIOS activities and opportunities in networks where we reach a broad and diverse audience.
  4. Support and promote the initiatives of other organisations working towards diversity and inclusion in polar science, e.g. APECS, Women in Polar Science, Polar Pride and Minorities in Polar Research.
  5. Encourage SIOS member institutions to nominate underrepresented genders to our working groups, committees, Board of Directors and General Assembly.
  6. Ensure that the SIOS Board of Directors continues to have representatives from at least 4 countries and at least one representative from a non-European member country.
  7. When recruiting for staff at SIOS Knowledge Centre:
    • Ensure the job advertisement is written in language that does not implicitly favour candidates of any particular gender or ethnic background.
    • Make special effort to encourage candidates of underrepresented genders to apply for vacant positions.
    • Ensure qualified male and female candidates are interviewed for every position by committees with balanced composition