Thematic Network on Working in the Arctic

The overall objective of the network is to develop a global partnership of educational and scientific organizations in the North for study and support of human working capacities in the Arctic. Climate change will affect environmental conditions profoundly and the effects are also echoed in the working life. The network of Working in the Arctic aims to support mitigation and adaptation measures at all occupational sectors and organizational levels. The network is a platform to promote research projects and education on occupational health and safety, to organize research training and distribute scientific information.


  • To enhance occupational health and safety (OHS) of people working in the north
  • To enhance work ability and productivity in the extreme conditions.
  • To support sustainable development of workplaces in the changing climatic conditions
  • To support development of models and tools for workplaces in arctic to facilitate adaptive capacity and resilience
  • To enhance implementation of systemic Human Factors (HF) approach to traditional OHS field
  • To find a balance between sustainable, cost-effective and profitable professional activities of people working in the extreme Arctic conditions
  • To bring to the table discussion of maritime and labor law issues in reference to the occupational health in the extreme Arctic conditions
  • To find solutions for workers mental and physical health


  • Meetings along with UArctic conferences. Organized session on UArctic conference
  • Joint interdisciplinary meetings to enhance cooperation in the Arctic
  • Dissemination of research studies (eg., dissertations) which are related to workers and Arctic conditions (health and safety issues)
  • Arrangement of summer schools for students and young scientists
  • Information dissemination (blogs, websites, forums, chat rooms, etc.) on stress management, psychological protection from stress and "polar night depression" for people working in the High North.

Current and Planned Activities:

  • Meeting on the UArctic network project concerning with experts related to climate, occupational health and safety. The meeting was arranged in Oulu, Finland Nov 27-28, 2023. UiT- The Arctic University of Norway, Umeå University and Työterveyslaitos - Finnish Institute of Occupational Health.
  • Arctic Five network on Occupational health and safety was established in 2022.
    • Topics of interest in this network are 1) The impact of climate and weather on outdoor workers’ performance, health, and safety, including mitigative and adaptive strategies, 2) Health and performance concerns of working in the mining industry and 3) Development of models/tools for workplaces to facilitate adaptive capacity/resilience as well as development of information and learning material with regards to various health hazards/problems encountered in the Arctic.
    • Meeting of Arctic Five network and Arcum (Arctic Centre at UMU) June 1-2, 2023, Umeå, Sweden
    • Meeting of Arctic Five network and Arcum (Arctic Centre at UMU) Oct 7-8, 2023, Luleå, Sweden
  • Arctic Frontiers 2023 Moving North: 30. Jan – 2. Feb, Tromsø, Norway. TN participates in session organization: Occupational health and safety in the Arctic.
  • UArctic Congress 2024. TN will organize a session.


  • Research report of the study "Functionality of respiratory protective devices at workplace in the cold" (in Finnish, abstract in English). Jussila, Kirsi; Rissanen, Sirkka; Kaisto, Jenni; Kähkönen, Heli; Törmänen, Sampsa; Lindström, Irmeli; Mäkelä, Erja (2023) Hengityksensuojainten toimivuus työpaikalla kylmässä (HSTK II).
  •  Stjernbrandt A, Pettersson H, Wahlström V, Wahlström J and Lewis C (2023) Occupational cold exposure is associated with upper extremity pain. Front. Pain Res. 4:1063599. doi: 10.3389/fpain.2023.1063599