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Welcome to SPRI

SPRI's mission is to enhance the understanding of the polar regions through scholarly research and publication, educating new generations of polar researchers, caring for and making accessible its collections, and projecting the history and environmental significance of the polar regions to the wider community.


Research at SPRI

We investigate a range of issues in the environmental sciences, social sciences, arts and humanities of relevance to the Arctic and Antarctica.

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Graduate study

SPRI has a friendly community of postgraduate students, working for the PhD degree or the MPhil in Polar Studies.

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The Polar Museum

The Scott Polar Research Institute holds a unique collection illustrating polar exploration, history and science. Find out how past discoveries in the Arctic and Antarctic help today's scientists to investigate our changing environment.

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Staff and students

SPRI's staff publish regularly in a range of leading journals, and attract research funding from a wide variety of sources.

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Library

The Library offers a collection with over 700 current journals and over 250,000 printed works covering all subjects relating to the Arctic, the Antarctic, and to ice and snow wherever found.

Library catalogue

Big Freeze Art Festival launches

4th March, 2021

 

This spring, the Scott Polar Research Institute is holding an online art festival. Featuring visual art, poetry, textile art, sound works and films the art festival presents a range of perspectives on the Arctic and Antarctic. Join our live events, catch up on films and blog posts and make your own polar self portrait.

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Environmental Diplomacy in the Arctic

19th January, 2021

 

Geographer Richard Powell appeared today, 19 January 2021, as a witness before the Foreign Affairs Committee's inquiry into 'Environmental Diplomacy'. The inquiry is examining the UK Government's strategic approach to environmental diplomacy, particularly in the context of COP26.

Richard contributed evidence to a session addressing the geopolitics and governance of the polar regions. The Committee business is all being held virtually.

Nimrod expedition sledging flag acquired for the nation

17th December, 2020

 

The Scott Polar Research Institute and the National Maritime Museum have acquired the sledging flag and sledge that Dr Eric Marshall (1879-1963) used on Ernest Shackleton's British Antarctic Expedition (BAE) of 1907-1909. The sledge and sledging flag are the two most recent acquisition supported by the National Heritage Memorial Fund, with a grant of £204,700.

The flag will rejoin its partner, Shackleton's sledging flag from the same expedition, in the collections of the Scott Polar Research Institute. It will be cared for in a temperature, humidity and light controlled environment so that it can be preserved for future generations. The Institute's Polar Museum hopes to update its displays relating to the Nimrod expedition to highlight not only the feat of almost reaching the geographic South Pole, but also the scientific goals and achievements of the expedition.

100 Years of the Scott Polar Research Institute

26th November, 2020

 

Today we have been celebrating the centenary of the Scott Polar Research Institute, with a day looking back at the past 100 years of polar research conducted at the Institute.

Although 2020 has been a year of unexpected challenges, the SPRI community continues to work together to continue the legacy of Captain Robert Falcon Scott and his four companions who died on their return from the South Pole in 1912, and Frank Debenham, who was the driving force behind the founding of the Institute. We are very much looking forward to seeing what the future holds, and another 100 years of SPRI.

The Polar Museum recently unveiled its new exhibition, dedicated to the Scott Polar Research Institute centenary 'A Century of Polar Research', which you can also now view online.

Dr Christine Batchelor

26th October, 2020

 

We are pleased to pass on the excellent news that Dr Christine Batchelor will receive the Outstanding Early Career Scientist Award for 2021 from the Cryospheric Sciences Division of the European Geosciences Union (EGU).

Winners are honoured for their important contributions to Earth, planetary and space sciences.

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SPRI Centenary

SPRI Centenary


Our 2020 Centenary Campaign aims to build the endowment funds of the Institute to support new academic posts, to enhance our ability to undertake polar fieldwork, to secure the future of our Museum and Archive activities, and to train the next generation of polar researchers.

  • 9th March 2021:
    Change, continuity and value in Svalbard. Details…
    Scott Polar Research Institute - HCEP (Histories, Cultures, Environments and Politics) Research Seminars
  • 11th March 2021:
    Greenland Geopolitics in the light of renewed American attention. Details…
    Polar Humanities and Social Sciences ECR Workshop
  • 11th March 2021:
    Art in Isolation, live panel discussion with Q&A. Details…
    Polar Museum public events
  • More seminars…