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  • Sediments taken from the seafloor are being processed on the deck of a research vessel in one of the many fjords of Svalbard. Working with these samples, research scientists at Akvaplan-niva gather a wealth of information on the Arctic including biodiversity, the levels and effects of organic contaminants in sediment-dwelling organisms. Photo by Guttorm Christensen
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Arctic R&D

Our Arctic R&D team addresses scientific questions of a multi-disciplinary nature to improve understanding of human impacts, environmental variability and climate-driven changes in the Arctic.

Scientific knowledge is the foundation of marine management strategies seeking sustainable use of limited resources by multiple user groups. Akvaplan-niva is at the forefront of translating research results to actionable information for stakeholders. Our Arctic R&D team addresses scientific questions of a multi-disciplinary nature to improve understanding of human impacts, environmental variability and climate-driven changes in the Arctic. Results contribute to a wide variety of environmental initiatives to assess and protect the environmental quality of the Arctic. The Arctic R&D department is linked to other business areas of the company, ensuring that our advisors remain on top of the latest research developments when working with our clients.

Akvaplan-niva augments the company’s core scientific strengths by drawing upon the company’s extensive international contact network. This network extends across regional, national and international boundaries and experiences from academic, government and private institutes. Our research infrastructure includes accredited laboratories for benthic sorting and identification and chemical analyses and a new specially designed laboratory for low temperature experimental studies on Arctic organisms. Additional state of the art infrastructure, including the latest field and laboratory equipment, and research vessels, is accessed through the Norwegian Institute of Water Research, the Fram Centre and our international network. Representing one third of the company's annual turnover, Arctic R&D projects are financed by grants from national research councils, Norwegian Ministries, private corporations, non-government organizations, European Union framework programs, and internal company investments.

Ecotoxicology
We investigate the transport, bioaccumulation and toxic effects of old and new environmental pollutants in the Arctic environment with an emphasis on freshwater and marine ecosystems.
Petroleum & Environment
We study effects of operational and accidental discharges from the petroleum industry on Arctic marine organisms. Results are used to improve methods for monitoring, risk assessment and spill response.

Climate & Ecosystems
We study how Arctic marine communities and ecosystem processes are linked to climatic variability, with an emphasis on benthic communities, benthic-pelagic coupling, and food web interactions.
Physical Oceanography
We develop numerical models to investigate fine-scale physical oceanographic processes and the spreading of biological and chemical tracers in the seas and coastal areas of northern Europe.

Biodiversity
We acquire baseline knowledge and understanding of benthos in Arctic marine areas, and study effects of anthropogenic impacts on the community structure.