1. The programme framework is ready
  2. Venue stood the test
  3. Committees ready to start working
  4. 1st Circular: Call for session proposals
  5. Oslo's new signature
  6. POLARCAT won the race for first proposal
  7. All programme proposals welcome
  8. IPY Open science in St.Petersburg
  9. Programme of 39 sessions
  10. Offer to registered participants: 30 percent discount on excursion to Svalbard
  11. IASC provides travel support to early career scientists
  12. 2nd Circular: Call for abstracts
  13. Time to get a booth at PolarEXPO!
  14. PolarCINEMA ready to receive polar films and TV-documentaries
  15. Steven Chown to be awarded the Martha T Muse Prize at IPY-OSC
  16. The IPY ‘From Knowledge to Action’ Conference to be held in Montreal in 2012
  17. Unique opportunity for science teachers
  18. A new precedent for the involvement of early career scientists
  19. Several opportunities to get travel support
  20. More than 2200 abstracts submitted on deadline
  21. Registration now open
  22. 400 stipends distributed to early career polar scientists
  23. Get your Letter of Invitation
  24. Invitations out for the PolarTEACHERS conference
  25. PolarCINEMA committee very satisfied with the turnout
  26. More than 2500 abstracts accepted
  27. RV Oceania to Oslo for IPY-OSC
  28. Institutions invited to indicate interest for the PolarFESTIVAL
  29. Poster guidelines
  30. Time slots allocated for sessions
  31. Book before 6th May: Glaciers and fjords - excursion to the scenic highlights of Western Norway
  32. Draft programme ready
  33. HRH Crown Prince Haakon will open the IPY-OSC 2010
  34. HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco will attend the conference
  35. 9th June Keynote: Katherine Richardson
  36. 10th June Keynote: Ole Henrik Magga
  37. Tinker Foundation travel grants for Latin American participants
  38. 11th June Keynote: David Barber
  39. 12th June Keynote: Alexander Frolov
  40. 2200 have registered so far
  41. Make sure your media contacts are invited
  42. PolarEXCHANGE with Sue Nelson
  43. Patrick Webber awarded with the first IASC Medal
  44. Arctic sea ice cover heading towards another record low?
  45. Teachers and young scientists join forces in Oslo
  46. Making marfu and melting ice
  47. Preparing for tomorrows polar science
  48. Launch of the Polar Information Commons (PIC) Tuesday afternoon
  49. Cruising the Oslo Fjord for polar history
  50. Warm opening of a cool conference
  51. A territory of dialogue
  52. From policy to action
  53. Signing agreement for cooperation
  54. Rising sea levels on the agenda
  55. Prestigious prize for work in Antarctica
  56. Polar expedition to the FRAM Museum
  57. More cold and snowy winters to come
  58. Arctic and Antarctic partners sign agreement on polar education
  59. Medal for science and inspiring mentorship
  60. Science should incorporate indigenous knowledge
  61. A road movie on ice
  62. Data on ice loss in the Arctic Ocean can be misleading
  63. On the making of polar documentaries
  64. Encounters on Polar Street
  65. Morning plenary: Vladimir Kattsov
  66. International Polar Year officially closed
  67. Survey shows Norwegians believe in science
  68. 1st Circular out for IPY 2012 MONTRÉAL
  69. 2nd Circular out for IPY 2012 in Montreal
  70. Reminder: Call for abstracts
  71. One week left till Abstract Deadline
  72. Updating the IPY Publications Database for the IPY 2012 Conference in Montreal
  73. Time to register for the IPY 2012 conference

Warm opening of a cool conference

oslo soul ingress (Ingressbilde)

The IPY Oslo Science Conference was officially opened this morning by His Royal Highness Crown Prince Haakon. At the opening ceremony, 2400 polar scientists and friends of polar science were moved by a children's gospel choir and by haunting music played on instruments made of pure ice.

Terje Isungset played on instruments made out of pure ice. Photo: John Petter Reinertsen/ Samfoto
Terje Isungset played on instruments made out of pure ice.
“If you want to fight poverty, it actually makes sense to go to the Arctic,” Crown Prince Haakon said in his opening speech in Oslo today.

“Dealing with climate change is a prerequisite for reaching our goal of eradicating extreme poverty. And through your important work, you all help to bring us one step closer to solving the global challenges we are facing,” he continued, addressing all those who have taken part in the International Polar Year, or IPY.

Remarkable Polar Year

Together with Danish Crown Prince Fredrik and Swedish Crown Princess Victoria, Crown Prince Haakon has served as a royal patron for IPY. The three of them have visited both Svalbard and Greenland.

The trips were both fun and meaningful, the Crown Prince told the audience.

"The Arctic reminds me that I am part of nature and that the vulnerability of nature is a reflection of my own vulnerability," he said.

Crown Prince Haakon described the International Polar Year as remarkable in many ways.

"The vision of involving the public through extensive education, outreach and communication activities makes IPY unique," he said, recalling the inauguration of the Norwegian programme three years ago, with 3000 schoolchildren on the square in front of Oslo City Hall.

CEO of the The Research Council of Norway, Arvid Hallén greets HRH Crown Prince Haakon.Photo: John Petter Reinertsen/ Samfoto
CEO of the The Research Council of Norway, Arvid Hallén greets HRH Crown Prince Haakon.

Good timing

In addition to the Crown Prince of Norway, ministers and other prominent speakers helped to make the opening ceremony an unforgettable event.

Norwegian Minister of Research and Higher Education Tora Aasland pointed out that the timing of the IPY couldn't have been better, referring to the clear indications of climate change in the last few years.

"I feel confident that data gathered during the IPY will be important in finding some of the solutions to these problems," Ms Aasland said, before citing an English saying also used by Norwegian polar explorer and scientist Fridtjof Nansen:

"The difficult is what takes a little time, the impossible is what takes a little longer."

Minister of Science & Technology in India, Mr. Prithviraj Chavan. Photo: John Petter Reinertsen/ Samfoto
Minister of Science & Technology in India, Mr. Prithviraj Chavan.
Prominent speakers
Ms Aasland has just returned from a trip to Svalbard with her colleague, Indian Minister of Science and Technology Mr Prithviraj Chavan, who also spoke at the opening.

"For a tropical country like India, climate changes affect the monsoon rains, which are the backbone of the Indian economy," Mr Chavan said.

India opened a small research station on Svalbard in 2007 to mark the start of IPY, but the country has been involved in polar research since 1981.

Other speakers were Dr Deliang Chen, Executive Director of the International Council for Science (ISCU), Mr Michel Jarraud, Secretary General of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) (online from Geneva), Director General Arvid Hallén of the Research Council of Norway, and last but not least, the Russian explorer and scientist, famous for planting the Russian flag on the seabed at the North Pole, Dr Arthur Chilingarov.  See A territory of Dialogue

Haddy N’jie.Photo: John Petter Reinertsen/Samfoto
Haddy N’jie.
Arctic atmosphere

The ceremony combined darkness, blue lighting and music played by percussionist Terje Isungset on ice instruments to create an atmosphere evocative of the Arctic. The audience also heard a Sami joik performed by Ande Somby.

The ceremony closed with a touching performance by Oslo Soul Children, singing Michael Jackson's Heal the World together with Haddy N'jie, a Norwegian writer, artist and singer who also compered today's ceremony.

Last updated: 09.06.2010