In order for a society to deal with the challenges associated with a changing climate, research in the socioeconomic and socio-cultural aspects of climate change is needed. A large part of the research belongs within the discipline of anthropology, but the area is interdisciplinary and has economists, environmental planners and others with a social science background associated.
The research programme Climate and Society constitutes a link between the Greenland Climate Research Centre and Ilisimatusarfik, University of Greenland. The programme is housed in the Climate Research Centre and is engaged with socioeconomic and socio-cultural questions related to the opportunities and challenges posed by climate change in Greenland. The programme is a complement to the natural scientific research in the field and aims to generate a better appreciation of the linkages between climate change, the usage of living resources, the development in the use of non-living resources and the socioeconomic systems in Greenland. The programme has one Professor, two researchers and a number of PhD students associated.
The research project, Survey of Living Conditions in the Arctic (SLiCA), does not focus directly on climate change, but has carried out comprehensive surveys of living conditions in the arctic region. Insights from the project make up a valuable background for understanding the changes that are affecting many societies today. The project is based at Ilisimatusarfik University of Greenland, but spans across the arctic region and includes researchers from a number of different disciplines.
In addition to work based in Greenland, a number of Danish research institutions carry out studies in this topic. Researchers affiliated with the Eskimology and Arctic Studies at Copenhagen University and CIRCLA – Centre for Innovation and Research in Culture and Learning in the Arctic – at Aalborg University focus on the effects of climate change on living conditions in Greenland. You can read more about the project Ice, Climate and Development at Copenhagen University here and about CIRCLAs work in the field here.
The Greenland Climate Research Centre participates in an Arctic Council project called ‘Adaptation Actions for a Changing Arctic‘ (AACA). The project, which is expected to be completed in 2017, undertakes a regional analysis of climate change and adaptation options for Baffin Bay and Davis Strait. The project involves a number of Greenlandic, Danish and Canadian knowledge institutions and studies climate change as well as interactions with other drivers of change in the Arctic.