The North Research Theme

The North Research Theme

The North Research Theme

Established by Professor Tim Ingold in June 2011.  Managed by 17 Project Board members from all three University Colleges representing a full range of northern interests. 

Since 2018 The North theme has been led by Dr Ed Schofield and a smaller team of nine Working Group members who will build on the University's current northern research, ranging from music, language and archaeology to geology, hydrology and climate change to provide an environment in which projects can develop.

Why Aberdeen?

It is at the hub of a region that extends eastwards to the Nordic and Baltic countries and to northern Russia and Siberia, and westwards to Iceland, Greenland, Canada and Alaska.

This region, known as the 'circumpolar North', is defined by latitude and the tight intersection of climatic, The North Research Theme - Aberdeen Universityenvironmental, historical, geopolitical and cultural conditions which come together to give it a significance for the future of life on earth out of proportion to its relatively sparse human population.

Aberdeen offers a base for northern research that uniquely affords a truly circumpolar perspective and aims to expand research within northern circumpolar regions, as defined by climatic, environmental, historical, geopolitical and cultural conditions to answer key questions by sponsoring four major programmes of interdisciplinary research, which will shortly be available online.

These interdisciplinary programmes, brought together colleagues from the College of Physical Sciences (CoPS), the College of Life Sciences and Medicine (CLSM) and the College of Arts and Social Sciences (CASS) and were comprised of:

  • established staff
  • five postdoctoral research fellows
  • 11 doctoral students.


The long-term ambition is to establish an Aberdeen Institute for the North with its own building, centred on a Museum of the North which will act as a magnet for researchers from around the world.

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