Research School for Socio-Economic and
Natural Sciences of the Environment
Research School for Socio-Economic and
Natural Sciences of the Environment

Generating societal value from improved weather, water & ice forecasts in the polar regions

Date: 18 April 2018
Time: 12:00 - 17:00
Location: European Polar Board, NWO, Laan van Nieuw Oost-Indiƫ 300, 2593 CE The Hague

Registration and flyer:

> Flyer

For registration: Please send an email to Berill Blair (


The aims of the PPP-SERA Open Session are to share developments and insights from the Polar Prediction Project and the social science agenda during the Year of Polar Prediction (YOPP), to provide perspectives on the role and value of WWIC services from a range of maritime sectors, and to exchange ideas on the societal value of enhanced WWIC services. The meeting will be hosted by the European Polar Board. Lunch and refreshments are sponsored by the Environmental Policy Group of Wageningen University.


12:00 Registration and lunch
13:00 Word of welcome Renuka Badhe
13:05 Introducing the Polar Prediction Project Kirstin Werner
13:15 Aims and relevance of PPP-SERA Machiel Lamers
13:30 Communities and WWIC service needs Gita Ljubicic
13:50 Sailing in ice-infested waters Jet and Gijs Sluijk
14:10 Handling ships in first year ice Johan Buysse
14:30 Training in the Carnival Corporation fleet for safety at sea Hans Hederström
14:50 Coffee break
15:15 Plenary discussion
17:00 Closure

Confirmed speakers

  • Dr. Renuka Badhe
    Executive Secretary of the European Polar Board, The Hague, The Netherlands
  • Dr. Kirstin Werner
    International Coordination Office of the Polar Prediction Project, Alfred Wegener Institute, Bremerhaven, Germany
  • Dr. Machiel Lamers
    Steering committee member of the Polar Prediction Project, Co-chair of the PPP-SERA group, Lead-PI of the SALIENSEAS project and Associate Professor at the Environmental Policy Group, Wageningen University and Research, the Netherlands
  • Dr. Gita Ljubicic
    Member of the PPP-SERA group, expert in indigenous community resilience, and Associate Professor at Carlton University, Ottawa, Canada
  • Johan Buysse
    Master Mariner, MSc (Nautical), marine cargo surveyor and cargo-superintendent, author of the book “Handling Ships in First-Year Ice”, Belgium
  • Hans Hederström
    Experienced mariner, Director of the CSMART simulation centre, part of the Carnival Corporation & plc Group, Almere Poort, The Netherlands
  • Jet and Gijs Sluik
    Tecla Sailing, The Netherlands


The Polar Prediction Project (PPP) was conceived and initiated in 2012 by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), through its World Weather Research Programme (WWRP), in response to rapid environmental change in the Polar Regions. The primary goal of the PPP is to advance scientific knowledge such that society, both within and outside of the Arctic and Antarctic, may benefit through applications of improved weather and climate services. This includes improved understanding and prediction of physical parameters and the ways people use the available information.

Meeting the challenge to ensure societal value from scientific efforts demands the application of social and interdisciplinary science to better understand the vulnerabilities and resilience of sectors and communities and the way weather, water and ice (WWI) information relates to relevant decision-making processes. It also requires improved methods to evaluate impact and to measure social and economic value across a wide spectrum of potential user communities and cultural, social, political, economic and geographic contexts. Towards these ends, the PPP established a special task group of social and interdisciplinary researchers and service practitioners in 2015. The main interest of this group, which is referred to as PPP-SERA (the PPP Societal and Economic Research and Applications group), is in understanding human behaviours and decision-making processes at local and regional levels to identify the need for and utilization of environmental prediction services. In the week of 12 April 2018, the PPP-SERA group will meet in Wageningen, the Netherlands, to discuss progress and plans. This presents an excellent opportunity to share experiences and insights with the wider community and especially with those interested in research, policy and practice. You are warmly invited to attend this PPP-SERA Open Session.