National Geographic Society: Request for Proposals for Changing Polar Systems

Deadline: 3 January 2018

The National Geographic Society is seeking proposals for its “Changing Polar Systems” grant programme. As global temperatures rise and polar ice melts, polar environments have become some of the most rapidly changing on Earth. Yet, public understanding of these changes largely amounts to “ice is melting,” which trivializes and often masks the complex interactions between terrestrial and marine life in these areas.

New and innovative science and communication approaches (especially visual)—as well as collaborations that can convey critical information about polar systems in a relevant and compelling way—are needed to better engage a variety of influential audiences, including polar and non-polar communities, policymakers, business leaders, and other decision-makers.

Projects may be focused around conservation, education, research, storytelling, or technology, but all applications should explicitly state the plan for evaluating the impact of the work. Preference will be given to proposals that include feasible plans to measure baselines or demonstrate change in key indicators (e.g., of threat level, audience or learner engagement, or ecosystem trends and connectivity).


Priority will be given to projects that aim to do one or more of the following:

  • fill critical knowledge gaps in geology, glaciology, or the polar coastal zones, where changes are having immediate effects on the ecosystem;
  • convey (through a wide range of outlets, media platforms, and audiences) how changes in polar systems are affecting global issues such as sea level, species distribution, and atmospheric and oceanic circulation patterns;
  • develop new education methods for reaching learners of any age; or
  • accelerate designation of marine protected areas in the Arctic.

Funding Information

Applicants may request from $10,000 to $150,000 (but typically less than $50,000) to be used over one or two years, of which up to 20 percent of the total can be used as a stipend for the applicant or team members, and up to 15 percent can be used for institutional overhead (applicable only for projects over $50,000).

Eligibility Criteria

The National Geographic Society seeks proposals from around the world that aim to contribute to the science explaining the changes occurring in Arctic/Antarctic regions and employ innovative ways to communicate these changes to various audiences.

How to Apply

Applicants can apply via given website.

For more information, please visit Changing Polar Systems.


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