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SCAR XXXII WP21: Report of the History Expert Group Popular

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XXXII SCAR Delegates Meeting
23-25 July 2012, Portland Oregon, USA

SCAR XXXII WP21: Report of the History Expert Group

Working Paper 21
Agenda Item: 5.4.4
Posted/Revised: June 14
Person Responsible: Luedecke

Executive Summary

Title: History Expert Group

Author: Cornelia Lüdecke


The Expert Group was founded as an Action Group in 2004 [??], with 24 individuals present at the first meeting in Germany in 2005. Since then the Group has flourished and membership of the Expert Group has steadily increased, as has the geographical and disciplinary diversity of the participants. The Group’s meetings continue to serve as a valuable discussion space for junior and senior members alike. Meetings have been held across four continents, permitting the core group of academic historians to be joined by local researchers who would likely not otherwise have joined the Group. The forthcoming meeting in Portland will be the largest and most diverse yet – a sign of our ongoing vitality. The SCAR Expert Group provides a unique and irreplaceable site for scholars to exchange ideas and develop historical research related to the Antarctic, rather than just passively sharing their findings, evidenced by collaborative research projects undertaken by group members.

Important Issues or Factors:

Previously rare early published sources are becoming globally available, and members of the Expert Group are contributing to their publication through forums such as the South African National Antarctic Program’s online database;

More and more documents held in restricted archives are being released, including in the former Soviet Union, but also from national archives elsewhere;

New methods of social and archaeological investigation are being developed and resources created;

Opportunities for collaboration between historians and scientists are increasing.

Recommendations/Actions and Justification:

We wish to continue the SCAR History Expert Group in its current form.

Expected Benefits/Outcomes:

The current high level of publication by Group members will continue, both individually and through collective forums such as special journal issues and a planned edited volume.


The SCAR Social Science Action Group, other research programs specified in the main text, as well as the history group of the International Arctic Science Committee (IASC).

Budget Implications: US$3000 to support the annual workshop of the Group.