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International Polar Year 2007-2008

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IPY LogoBritish Antarctic Survey (BAS) is the UK’s national Antarctic operator, and has for the past 60 years been responsible for most of the UK’s scientific research in Antarctica.

Part of the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC), BAS operates five research stations, two Royal Research Ships and five aircraft in and around Antarctica. As a world leader in Antarctic research, BAS is playing a major role in International Polar Year 2007–2008 (IPY).

International cooperation is a hallmark of polar science. As well as strong links with UK research centres and universities, BAS is part of a truly global network, working on IPY projects with scientists from around 40 other countries — including China, India, the USA and Russia. The previous BAS interdisciplinary science programme — Global Science in the Antarctic Context — was designed to meet the scientific objectives of International Polar Year. In addition to its core science programme, scientists from BAS are involved in 50 IPY-endorsed projects, half of which are bi-polar, contributing to around 25% of the global programme and 50% of the UK effort. This contribution makes BAS by far the biggest UK player in IPY 2007–2008.

IPY provides BAS with unprecedented opportunities for fostering new partnerships and exploring new areas of science that would be impossible alone. Working together with national and international partners, BAS science projects will help create a unique snapshot of the state of our planet at the start of the 21st century. Most importantly, BAS will help ensure that IPY leaves a legacy that will have profound implications for the future. The observing networks and international partnerships will continue to broaden and deepen our understanding of how the Earth functions.

BAS has a strong commitment to enthusing young people in its science and operations and for communicating its work to all sectors of society. International Polar Year 2007–2008 aims to inspire and inform a new generation of young scientists and citizens and to leave a truly lasting legacy, and raised awareness of the polar regions. To help deliver these IPY aspirations BAS has formed partnerships with leading UK museums, science centres and schools; has created online educational resources; and manages a media relations programme.

Read more: The UK and International Polar Year 2007-2008 (an 11 page .pdf document )