EGU2020-11935, updated on 16 Nov 2020
EGU General Assembly 2020
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Strengthening connections across disciplines and borders through an international permafrost coastal systems network (PerCS-Net)

Benjamin Jones1 and the Permafrost Coastal Systems Network (PerCS-Net)*
Benjamin Jones and the Permafrost Coastal Systems Network (PerCS-Net)
  • 1University of Alaska Fairbanks, Institute of Northern Engineering, Water and Environmental Research Center, United States of America (
  • *A full list of authors appears at the end of the abstract

Changes in the Arctic system have increased the vulnerability of permafrost coasts to erosion and altered coastal morphologies, ecosystems, biogeochemical cycling, infrastructure, cultural and heritage sites, community well-being, and human subsistence lifestyles. Better understanding the pace and nature of rapid changes occurring along permafrost coastlines is urgent, since a high proportion of Arctic residents live on or near coastlines, and many derive their livelihood from terrestrial and nearshore marine resources

The US National Science Foundation’s AccelNet and Arctic System Sciences Programs, recently awarded a collaborative grant funding the Permafrost Coastal Systems Network (PerCS-Net). PerCS-Net focuses on leveraging resources from existing national and international networks that have a common vision of better understanding permafrost coastal system dynamics and emerging transdisciplinary science, engineering, and societal issues in order to amplify the broader impacts by each individual network. PerCS-Net strengthens linkages between existing networks based in Germany, Russia, Norway, Denmark, Poland, and Canada with the activities of several active US NSF-funded networks as well as several local, state, and federally funded US-based networks.

PerCS-Net will benefit the US and international research communities by (1) developing internationally recognized protocols for quantifying the multitude of changes and impacts occurring in Arctic coastal permafrost systems, (2) sustaining long-term observations from representative coastal key sites, (3) unifying annual and decadal-scale observations of circum-arctic permafrost-influenced coasts, (4) refining a circum-arctic coastal mapping classification system and web-based delivery of geospatial information for management planning purposes and readily accessible information exchange for vulnerability assessments, (5) engaging local communities and observers to capture impacts on  subsistence and traditional livelihoods, and (6) promoting synergy across networks to foster the next generation of students, postdoctoral scholars, and early-career researchers faced with the known and unknown challenges of the future Arctic System.

Ultimately, PerCS-Net will develop a circumpolar alliance for Arctic coastal community information exchange between stake-, rights- and knowledge holders, scientists, and land managers. There is increasingly diverse interest in permafrost coastal system issues and currently no unified source of information on the past, present, and potential future state of permafrost coastal systems that provide the level of detail needed to make decisions at scales relevant for indigenous communities across the Arctic. Such new engagement will inform intergovernmental agencies and international research and outreach programs in making science-based decisions and policies to adapt to changing permafrost coastal system dynamics. PerCS-Net will build a network of networks to assess risks posed by permafrost coastal system changes to local and global economies and well-being and facilitate knowledge transfer that will lead to circum-arctic adaptation strategies.

Permafrost Coastal Systems Network (PerCS-Net):

Craig E. Tweedie (2), Ming Xiao (3), Vladimir A Alexeev (1), Alisa Baranskaya (4), Nataliya Belova (4), Emily Bristol (5), Diana L Bull (6), Guangqing Chi (3), Scott Dallimore (7), Li H Erikson (8), Louise Melanie Farquharson (1), Chris Flanary (9), Jennifer Frederick (6), Matthias Fuchs (10), Ann Gibbs (8), Jessica Graybill (11), Mikhail Grigoriev (12), Guido Grosse (10), Frank Günther (10), Kathleen E Halvorsen (13), Vladimir Isaev (4), Anna M. Irrgang (4), Go Iwahana (1), Anne M. Jensen (1), Craig Alexander Jones (9), Mikhail Z Kanevskiy (1), Jeremy Kasper (1), Nicole Kinsman (14), Osip Kokin (4), Aart Kroon (15), Hugues Lantuit (10), Trevor C Lantz (16), Anna K Liljedahl (1), Raed Lubbad (17), Chris Maio (1), Alexey Maslakov (4), James W McClelland (5), Alejandro Mota (18), Ingmar Nitze (10), Anna V. Novikova (4), Stanislav A. Ogorodov (4), Jacquelyn Overbeck (19), Pier Paul Overduin (10), Andrey N Petrov (20), Bruce M Richmond (8), Vladimir E Romanovsky (1), Joel C Rowland (20), Torsten Sachs (21), Edward Schuur (22), Natalya N. Shabanova (4), Anatoly Sinitsyn (17), Nikolay I Shiklomanov (23), Dmitry A Streletskiy (23), Matt C. Strzelecki (24), David K Swanson (25) and Matthew A. Thomas (26) (1) University of Alaska Fairbanks, Fairbanks, AK, United States, (2) University of Texas at El Paso, El Paso, TX, United States, (3) Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA, United States, (4) Lomonosov Moscow State University, Faculty of Geography, Department of Geocryology, Moscow, Russia, (5) University of Texas at Austin, Marine Science Institute, Port Aransas, TX, United States, (6) Sandia National Laboratories, Albuquerque, NM, United States, (7) Geological Survey of Canada Pacific, Sidney, BC, Canada, (8) USGS, Santa Cruz, CA, United States, (9) Integral Consulting Inc., Santa Cruz, CA, United States, (10) Alfred Wegener Institute Helmholtz-Center for Polar and Marine Research, Potsdam, Germany, (11) Colgate University, Hamilton, United States, (12) Melnikov Permafrost Institute SB RAS, Yakutsk, Russia, (13) Michigan Technological University, Houghton, MI, United States, (14) NOAA National Ocean Service National Geodetic Survey, Alaska Regional Advisor, AK, United States, (15) University of Copenhagen, København K, Denmark, (16) School of Environmental Studies, University of Victoria, Victoria, BC, Canada, (17) Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Trondheim, Norway, (18) Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos, NM, United States, (19) Alaska Division of Geological and Geophysical Surveys, Anchorage, AK, United States, (20) University of Northern Iowa, Department of Geography, Cedar Falls, IA, United States, (21) GFZ German Research Centre for Geosciences, Potsdam, Germany, (22) Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff, Arizona, United States, (23) George Washington University, Washington, DC, United States, (24) University of Wroclaw, Poland, (25) National Park Service Fairbanks, Arctic Inventory and Monitoring Network, Fairbanks, AK, United States, (26) USGS, Geologic Hazards Science Center, Golden, CO, United States

How to cite: Jones, B. and the Permafrost Coastal Systems Network (PerCS-Net): Strengthening connections across disciplines and borders through an international permafrost coastal systems network (PerCS-Net), EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-11935,, 2020


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