Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research (SCAR)

The Antarctic region is a matchless “natural laboratory” for vital scientific research that is important in its own right and impossible to achieve elsewhere on the planet; it enables to conduct research on fundamental changes in the environment, the consequences of which affect the course of processes in other regions of the planet.

The Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research (SCAR) is an inter-disciplinary committee of the International Science Council (ISC), and was created in 1958. SCAR is charged with initiating, developing and coordinating high quality international scientific research in the Antarctic region (including the Southern Ocean), and on the role of the Antarctic region in the Earth system. SCAR provides objective and independent scientific advice to the Antarctic Treaty Consultative Meetings and other organizations such as the UNFCCC and IPCC on issues of science and conservation affecting the management of Antarctica and the Southern Ocean and on the role of the Antarctic region in the Earth system based on balanced sustainable development.

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A significant part of the SCAR research is carried out within the framework of comprehensive research programs, the implementation of which cannot be ensured by the efforts of one country, the research team, or especially individual scientists. Much of SCAR’s work is carried out through its subsidiary groups – the Science Groups (SGs), Scientific Research Programs (SRPs), Expert Groups, Action Groups, Advisory Groups and groups co-sponsored with other organizations.

SCAR’s Science Groups are responsible for:

  • Sharing information on disciplinary scientific research being conducted by national Antarctic programmes;
  • Identifying research areas or fields where current research is lacking;
  • Coordinating proposals for future research by national Antarctic programmes to achieve maximum scientific and logistic effectiveness;
  • Identifying research areas or fields that might be best investigated by a SCAR Scientific Research Programme and establishing Scientific Programme Planning Groups to develop formal proposals to the Executive Committee;
  • Establishing Action and Expert Groups to address specific research topics within the discipline.

The three Science Groups are: GeoSciences, Life Sciences and Physical Sciences. SCAR currently has over 30 groups addressing various aspects of Antarctic research.

More information on these groups, their goals and how to get involved with their efforts you can find here (