What we do not know about the Arctic
The Arctic is a remote and hard to reach area, which affects where research expeditions go and climate scientists set up their field experiments. "The result is an extremely uneven concentration of research effort" , states Hakim Abdi and Daniel Metcalfe int their article in the science news by scientists channel The Conversation. Despite the melting glaciers and struggling polar bears being symbols of climate change, the Arctic is not as well known by research as we think, the researchers claim.
They have explored the geographic distribution in an article earlier published in Nature Ecology and Evolution, looking at almost two thousand publications more than fifty years back in time. There were two field sites being more investigated than others - Toolik Lake in Alaska and Abisko in Sweden -one third of all study citations came from areas within 50 km of these.
It is time to fill the knowledge gaps, and of great importance in times of climate change to really understand the fastest warming region in the world, they conclude in the Conversation article.
Hakim Abdi is Postdoctoral fellow at the Dept of Physical Geography and Ecosystem Science at Lund University. His research is focussed on sustainability, climate impacts and land use.
Daniel Metcalfe Senior Lecturer at the Dept of Physical Geography and Ecosystem Science at Lund University. His research is about climate, biogeochemical cycles and plant and animal communities, from the Arctic to the tropical cloud forests.