NI: Developing Innovative Multi-proxy Analysis for Long-term environmental change in Siberia and the Russian Far East

Lead Research Organisation: Newcastle University
Department Name: Geography Politics and Sociology

Abstract

One of the regions where current global warming is most pronounced is Siberia and the Russian Far East (SRFE). Inconveniently, this is also one of the regions with least coverage of climate records in international databases. As a consequence, it is extremely difficult to analyse and understand the spatial and temporal variations of climate change in SRFE that can provide context for past changes and current warming trajectories, and data are inadequate for syntheses that can aid evaluation of simulations of past climate-an important way to assess how well models perform at projecting the future, whether it be the impact on communities and ecosystems of forest fires or the fate of carbon currently stored in soils and peatlands.

The lack of records from SRFE partly reflects that there are few well established, multi-year international collaborations between Russian institutes and international partners. While scientists at Russian institutes have access to large datasets and field sites and have high-quality staff conducting laboratory analyses, they often have less access to the latest analytical approaches and data quality control protocols-or indeed the language fluency currently required for high-impact international publications and data syntheses. This can generate an imbalance of influence within projects and lead to one-sided and/or short-term scientific interactions that do not have long-term direction and coherence.

We will address both the science and science culture issues via a network of researchers from the UK and six institutes of the Russian Academy of Sciences in SRFE. Partners in this network have already expressed a strong interest to work together and pool resources to (1) synthesise existing data, (2) learn new methods, and (3) together create new high-quality records of climate and environmental change in this and future research projects. Our network is called DIMA ("Developing Innovative Multi-proxy Analysis"), because we will use multiple new approaches to get climate information from sediment records (proxies) to reconstruct climate change.

Our partnership-building and collaboration have several aims. First an extant dataset that described past vegetational change, which has not yet reached an international audience, will be analysed by the DIMA groups to create value-added features (e.g., data formulated for climate-vegetation modelling exercises) prior to publication. Second, we will collect samples to apply a method new to this region for reconstructing past temperatures from insect remains in lake sediments; this will be underpinned by UK-based training of Russian collaborators in the use of the latest laboratory and statistical procedures during a month-long visit of three colleagues from SRFE to the UK. It will involve collecting modern reference samples and generating a high-quality long temperature record from western Siberia as proof-of-concept for an expanded programme. Project leader van Hardenbroek is a specialist in this field. The two selected Russian Project Partners have considerable experience in organising field campaigns and laboratory analysis and will provide the necessary personnel, support and infrastructure.

The new data and the experience gained during this project will place the DIMA team in a competitive position to apply for larger collaborative project; the highly motivated team will be geared up to generate long-term climate records across SRFE, produce a high-quality regional temperature synthesis, and develop collaborations with, for example, groups using data compilations to explore climate-vegetation model performance (co-I Edwards current collaboration).

This proposal addresses the UK government's expressed need for developing and maintaining strong science ties with key countries, including Russia and strengthening international collaborations outside Europe post-Brexit.

Planned Impact

Our impact has three elements
1) UK government, science diplomacy: activities that will take place during the life of the project will contribute to UK government policy via UK-Russia science diplomacy activities. The need for the maintenance of essential dialogues during this current political climate can in some measure be addressed by the development of strong science ties. This has been recognized by the UK government via its Science and Innovation Network (SIN). Our geographical focus is the large region of Siberia and the Russian Far East, which is underserved by both national/international scientific research but of interest politically.
Activities include: building trust and successful links, facilitating bilateral discussions of science, exchange visits, and information transfer to relevant government departments and scientific agencies in the UK, and the Russian Academy. For greatest effect, we will emphasise the next generation of young Russian scientists, who have a strong international outlook. The project will provide content such as blogs, short films, and images, for entities such as the #UKinArctic digital campaign (the northern half of our region is arctic/subarctic). We will seek to input directly to government: i) established contacts at the British Embassy in Moscow-in 2018, Edwards produced a video about environmental science that was used by the SIN in Moscow and we will seek to do similar regarding this collaboration; ii) engaging with the NERC Arctic Office (director Henry Burgess) and FCO polar regions personnel to transfer information about our collaborative work (as we did for previous Russian-oriented projects); iii) we will link with the forthcoming APECS/UKPN initiative to support UK-Russia ECRs, and iv) we will have input to the All-Party Parliamentary Group for the Polar Regions chaired by James Gray MP. Science-diplomacy benefits are to some extent intangible, but products (such as videos), meeting reports, and, possibly, a specific report to all/some of the abovementioned stakeholders will attest to such activities.
2) Managers and indigenous communities in Russia: As research data are collected and analysed, information on trends in key environmental/ecosystem indicators across our region can provide a baseline against which to assess current and future changes. This can be relevant to local and regional resource managers and to indigenous people in the Russian regions and has been highlighted as important by our partners.
Activities include: developing information of changes in fire frequency or water quality over the 20th-21st C, providing immediate impact on local environmental concerns. In the Yakutsk region, forest fires appear be altering permafrost properties and lake function. We have connections in Yakutsk [via another project] with whom we can reach local authorities and communities. We expect similar connections can be made via our partners in other cities/regions. We will keep a log of such interactions and their outcomes.
3) The public (UK and Russia): Science research on climate change and environmental issues is of general interest to the public at large, but the situation in Russia is, with some exceptions, not well covered in the main media. This is especially true for the region of Russia east of the Urals where we will work.
Activities include: working with BBC science editor (with whom we talked informally) to create items for the BBC World Service. We will also pursue the obvious approaches to outreach (website and blogs, give public lectures, and write for one or more popular science outlets). In Russia, we will work with our colleagues to increase educational impacts and possibly contribute to positive public relations. For example, our experience in Magadan suggests that when on the ground, we will be able to reach local TV stations. Our colleagues are within or linked to universities to enable guest lectures, and meetings with students and general public.

Publications

10 25 50
publication icon
Edwards ME (2018) DIME - a new internatIonal working group on paleoecology and environmental change in Bulletin of the North-East Scientific Center, Russia Academy of Sciences Far East Branch

 
Description 1) Several members of the DIMA network have come up with their own projects and have applied for small grants to develop these ideas. At least three new UK-Russian consortia are now working together, funded by the NERC Arctic Office UK - Russia Arctic Bursaries Programme 2019, including:
- Kimberley Davies, Helen Mackay, Natalya Ryobogina (grant-writing visits between Newcastle University and Tyumen Scientific Centre)
- Leon Clarke, Natalya Ryobogina, Tatiana Blyakharchuk, Galina Simonova, Darya Kalashnikova (visits for grant-writing and data analysis between Manchester Metropolitan University and Institute for monitoring of climatic and ecological systems, SB RAS, Tomsk)
- Charlotte Clarke, Thierry Fonville, Anna Grenaderova (skills workshop at Siberian Federal University, Krasnoyarsk)

2) A special section in the journal BOREAS with 7 or 8 publications on Russian palaeoenvironmental research results is currently in progress and manuscripts are being submitted and under review. Special editors for these publications include PI/Co-Is Dr Maarten van Hardenbroek and Prof. Mary Edwards
Exploitation Route see above or examples of further funding attracted for UK-Russian collaborative research that was initiated at this project's workshops and meetings
Sectors Environment

 
Description (INTERACT) - International Network for Terrestrial Research and Monitoring in the Arctic
Amount € 10,000,000 (EUR)
Funding ID 730938 
Organisation European Commission 
Sector Public
Country European Union (EU)
Start 10/2016 
End 09/2020
 
Description Expanding UK-Russia scientific relations for junior and senior scientists: an "ideas" workshop and an environmental DNA training school.
Amount £14,977 (GBP)
Organisation Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 09/2019 
End 12/2019
 
Description UK-Russia network for research on climatic and ecological change in Siberia and the Russian Far East
Amount £46,760 (GBP)
Organisation British Council 
Sector Charity/Non Profit
Country United Kingdom
Start 09/2019 
End 12/2019
 
Description Tomsk summer school 
Organisation Russian Academy of Sciences
Department Institute of Monitoring of Climatic and Ecological Systems
Country Russian Federation 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Our team coordinated a summer school in Tomsk, Russia, for Russian colleagues (including early career researchers) interested in palaeoenvironmental research. The three UK PI/Co-Is, three UK early career researchers, and the two Russian Project Partners were present to provide training of techniques used in fieldwork (lake sediment coring, water sampling techniques, vegetation recording), laboratory (chironomid and charcoal analysis), and for statistical analysis in R software (multivariate statistics). Total attendance at the workshop was 28 people (this number excludes the 8 participants of our the research team).
Collaborator Contribution Colleagues from Russian institutions at the workshop provided information about published and unpublished locations of palaeoenvironmental records in Siberia and Russian Far East and expertise of working in these remote locations
Impact Initial publication in Vestnik (Russian journal with ISSN) to disseminate our DIMA palaeoenvironmental research network amongst Russian colleagues. More instistutes have since joined the DIMA research network.
Start Year 2018
 
Description Tomsk summer school 
Organisation Russian Academy of Sciences
Country Russian Federation 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution Our team coordinated a summer school in Tomsk, Russia, for Russian colleagues (including early career researchers) interested in palaeoenvironmental research. The three UK PI/Co-Is, three UK early career researchers, and the two Russian Project Partners were present to provide training of techniques used in fieldwork (lake sediment coring, water sampling techniques, vegetation recording), laboratory (chironomid and charcoal analysis), and for statistical analysis in R software (multivariate statistics). Total attendance at the workshop was 28 people (this number excludes the 8 participants of our the research team).
Collaborator Contribution Colleagues from Russian institutions at the workshop provided information about published and unpublished locations of palaeoenvironmental records in Siberia and Russian Far East and expertise of working in these remote locations
Impact Initial publication in Vestnik (Russian journal with ISSN) to disseminate our DIMA palaeoenvironmental research network amongst Russian colleagues. More instistutes have since joined the DIMA research network.
Start Year 2018
 
Description Tomsk summer school 
Organisation Russian Academy of Sciences
Country Russian Federation 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution Our team coordinated a summer school in Tomsk, Russia, for Russian colleagues (including early career researchers) interested in palaeoenvironmental research. The three UK PI/Co-Is, three UK early career researchers, and the two Russian Project Partners were present to provide training of techniques used in fieldwork (lake sediment coring, water sampling techniques, vegetation recording), laboratory (chironomid and charcoal analysis), and for statistical analysis in R software (multivariate statistics). Total attendance at the workshop was 28 people (this number excludes the 8 participants of our the research team).
Collaborator Contribution Colleagues from Russian institutions at the workshop provided information about published and unpublished locations of palaeoenvironmental records in Siberia and Russian Far East and expertise of working in these remote locations
Impact Initial publication in Vestnik (Russian journal with ISSN) to disseminate our DIMA palaeoenvironmental research network amongst Russian colleagues. More instistutes have since joined the DIMA research network.
Start Year 2018
 
Description Tomsk summer school 
Organisation Russian Academy of Sciences
Country Russian Federation 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution Our team coordinated a summer school in Tomsk, Russia, for Russian colleagues (including early career researchers) interested in palaeoenvironmental research. The three UK PI/Co-Is, three UK early career researchers, and the two Russian Project Partners were present to provide training of techniques used in fieldwork (lake sediment coring, water sampling techniques, vegetation recording), laboratory (chironomid and charcoal analysis), and for statistical analysis in R software (multivariate statistics). Total attendance at the workshop was 28 people (this number excludes the 8 participants of our the research team).
Collaborator Contribution Colleagues from Russian institutions at the workshop provided information about published and unpublished locations of palaeoenvironmental records in Siberia and Russian Far East and expertise of working in these remote locations
Impact Initial publication in Vestnik (Russian journal with ISSN) to disseminate our DIMA palaeoenvironmental research network amongst Russian colleagues. More instistutes have since joined the DIMA research network.
Start Year 2018
 
Description Tomsk summer school 
Organisation Russian Academy of Sciences
Country Russian Federation 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution Our team coordinated a summer school in Tomsk, Russia, for Russian colleagues (including early career researchers) interested in palaeoenvironmental research. The three UK PI/Co-Is, three UK early career researchers, and the two Russian Project Partners were present to provide training of techniques used in fieldwork (lake sediment coring, water sampling techniques, vegetation recording), laboratory (chironomid and charcoal analysis), and for statistical analysis in R software (multivariate statistics). Total attendance at the workshop was 28 people (this number excludes the 8 participants of our the research team).
Collaborator Contribution Colleagues from Russian institutions at the workshop provided information about published and unpublished locations of palaeoenvironmental records in Siberia and Russian Far East and expertise of working in these remote locations
Impact Initial publication in Vestnik (Russian journal with ISSN) to disseminate our DIMA palaeoenvironmental research network amongst Russian colleagues. More instistutes have since joined the DIMA research network.
Start Year 2018
 
Description Tomsk summer school 
Organisation Russian Academy of Sciences
Country Russian Federation 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution Our team coordinated a summer school in Tomsk, Russia, for Russian colleagues (including early career researchers) interested in palaeoenvironmental research. The three UK PI/Co-Is, three UK early career researchers, and the two Russian Project Partners were present to provide training of techniques used in fieldwork (lake sediment coring, water sampling techniques, vegetation recording), laboratory (chironomid and charcoal analysis), and for statistical analysis in R software (multivariate statistics). Total attendance at the workshop was 28 people (this number excludes the 8 participants of our the research team).
Collaborator Contribution Colleagues from Russian institutions at the workshop provided information about published and unpublished locations of palaeoenvironmental records in Siberia and Russian Far East and expertise of working in these remote locations
Impact Initial publication in Vestnik (Russian journal with ISSN) to disseminate our DIMA palaeoenvironmental research network amongst Russian colleagues. More instistutes have since joined the DIMA research network.
Start Year 2018
 
Description Tomsk summer school 
Organisation Russian Academy of Sciences
Country Russian Federation 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution Our team coordinated a summer school in Tomsk, Russia, for Russian colleagues (including early career researchers) interested in palaeoenvironmental research. The three UK PI/Co-Is, three UK early career researchers, and the two Russian Project Partners were present to provide training of techniques used in fieldwork (lake sediment coring, water sampling techniques, vegetation recording), laboratory (chironomid and charcoal analysis), and for statistical analysis in R software (multivariate statistics). Total attendance at the workshop was 28 people (this number excludes the 8 participants of our the research team).
Collaborator Contribution Colleagues from Russian institutions at the workshop provided information about published and unpublished locations of palaeoenvironmental records in Siberia and Russian Far East and expertise of working in these remote locations
Impact Initial publication in Vestnik (Russian journal with ISSN) to disseminate our DIMA palaeoenvironmental research network amongst Russian colleagues. More instistutes have since joined the DIMA research network.
Start Year 2018
 
Description Tomsk summer school 
Organisation Russian Academy of Sciences
Country Russian Federation 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution Our team coordinated a summer school in Tomsk, Russia, for Russian colleagues (including early career researchers) interested in palaeoenvironmental research. The three UK PI/Co-Is, three UK early career researchers, and the two Russian Project Partners were present to provide training of techniques used in fieldwork (lake sediment coring, water sampling techniques, vegetation recording), laboratory (chironomid and charcoal analysis), and for statistical analysis in R software (multivariate statistics). Total attendance at the workshop was 28 people (this number excludes the 8 participants of our the research team).
Collaborator Contribution Colleagues from Russian institutions at the workshop provided information about published and unpublished locations of palaeoenvironmental records in Siberia and Russian Far East and expertise of working in these remote locations
Impact Initial publication in Vestnik (Russian journal with ISSN) to disseminate our DIMA palaeoenvironmental research network amongst Russian colleagues. More instistutes have since joined the DIMA research network.
Start Year 2018
 
Description Tomsk summer school 
Organisation Siberian Federal University
Country Russian Federation 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Our team coordinated a summer school in Tomsk, Russia, for Russian colleagues (including early career researchers) interested in palaeoenvironmental research. The three UK PI/Co-Is, three UK early career researchers, and the two Russian Project Partners were present to provide training of techniques used in fieldwork (lake sediment coring, water sampling techniques, vegetation recording), laboratory (chironomid and charcoal analysis), and for statistical analysis in R software (multivariate statistics). Total attendance at the workshop was 28 people (this number excludes the 8 participants of our the research team).
Collaborator Contribution Colleagues from Russian institutions at the workshop provided information about published and unpublished locations of palaeoenvironmental records in Siberia and Russian Far East and expertise of working in these remote locations
Impact Initial publication in Vestnik (Russian journal with ISSN) to disseminate our DIMA palaeoenvironmental research network amongst Russian colleagues. More instistutes have since joined the DIMA research network.
Start Year 2018
 
Description Tomsk summer school 
Organisation Tomsk State University
Country Russian Federation 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Our team coordinated a summer school in Tomsk, Russia, for Russian colleagues (including early career researchers) interested in palaeoenvironmental research. The three UK PI/Co-Is, three UK early career researchers, and the two Russian Project Partners were present to provide training of techniques used in fieldwork (lake sediment coring, water sampling techniques, vegetation recording), laboratory (chironomid and charcoal analysis), and for statistical analysis in R software (multivariate statistics). Total attendance at the workshop was 28 people (this number excludes the 8 participants of our the research team).
Collaborator Contribution Colleagues from Russian institutions at the workshop provided information about published and unpublished locations of palaeoenvironmental records in Siberia and Russian Far East and expertise of working in these remote locations
Impact Initial publication in Vestnik (Russian journal with ISSN) to disseminate our DIMA palaeoenvironmental research network amongst Russian colleagues. More instistutes have since joined the DIMA research network.
Start Year 2018
 
Description Tomsk summer school 
Organisation Ural Federal University (Russia)
Country Russian Federation 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Our team coordinated a summer school in Tomsk, Russia, for Russian colleagues (including early career researchers) interested in palaeoenvironmental research. The three UK PI/Co-Is, three UK early career researchers, and the two Russian Project Partners were present to provide training of techniques used in fieldwork (lake sediment coring, water sampling techniques, vegetation recording), laboratory (chironomid and charcoal analysis), and for statistical analysis in R software (multivariate statistics). Total attendance at the workshop was 28 people (this number excludes the 8 participants of our the research team).
Collaborator Contribution Colleagues from Russian institutions at the workshop provided information about published and unpublished locations of palaeoenvironmental records in Siberia and Russian Far East and expertise of working in these remote locations
Impact Initial publication in Vestnik (Russian journal with ISSN) to disseminate our DIMA palaeoenvironmental research network amongst Russian colleagues. More instistutes have since joined the DIMA research network.
Start Year 2018
 
Description Training visits to UK by Russian early career researchers 
Organisation Russian Academy of Sciences
Country Russian Federation 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution Early Career Researchers have visited the UK to enhance their laboratory and/or statistical skills. These were 1-3 week visits: Irina Kurina (Institute for monitoring of climatic and ecological systems, SB RAS, Tomsk) visiting M van Hardenbroek at Newcastle University Leonid Khazin (Trofimuk Institute of Petroleum Geology and Geophysics, SB RAS, Novosibirsk) visiting M van Hardenbroek at Newcastle University Liudmila Syrykh (Northern Water Problems Institute Karelian Research Centre, RAS, St. Petersburg) visiting M van Hardenbroek at Newcastle University Eleonora Nasonova (Tyumen Scientific Centre SB RAS, Tyumen) visiting M van Hardenbroek at Newcastle University Ekarina Lukanina (Institute for monitoring of climatic and ecological systems, SB RAS, Tomsk) visiting M van Hardenbroek at Newcastle University Darya Kalashnikova (Institute for monitoring of climatic and ecological systems, SB RAS, Tomsk) visiting Leon Clarke at Manchester Metropolitan University
Collaborator Contribution Russian early career researchers will continue to work on applying these techniques on collaborative projects, where PI or Co-Is will be involved as co-authors.
Impact No published output yeat. Research is interdisciplinary, including environmental science, biology, and geochemistry.
Start Year 2018
 
Description Training visits to UK by Russian early career researchers 
Organisation Russian Academy of Sciences
Country Russian Federation 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution Early Career Researchers have visited the UK to enhance their laboratory and/or statistical skills. These were 1-3 week visits: Irina Kurina (Institute for monitoring of climatic and ecological systems, SB RAS, Tomsk) visiting M van Hardenbroek at Newcastle University Leonid Khazin (Trofimuk Institute of Petroleum Geology and Geophysics, SB RAS, Novosibirsk) visiting M van Hardenbroek at Newcastle University Liudmila Syrykh (Northern Water Problems Institute Karelian Research Centre, RAS, St. Petersburg) visiting M van Hardenbroek at Newcastle University Eleonora Nasonova (Tyumen Scientific Centre SB RAS, Tyumen) visiting M van Hardenbroek at Newcastle University Ekarina Lukanina (Institute for monitoring of climatic and ecological systems, SB RAS, Tomsk) visiting M van Hardenbroek at Newcastle University Darya Kalashnikova (Institute for monitoring of climatic and ecological systems, SB RAS, Tomsk) visiting Leon Clarke at Manchester Metropolitan University
Collaborator Contribution Russian early career researchers will continue to work on applying these techniques on collaborative projects, where PI or Co-Is will be involved as co-authors.
Impact No published output yeat. Research is interdisciplinary, including environmental science, biology, and geochemistry.
Start Year 2018
 
Description Training visits to UK by Russian early career researchers 
Organisation Russian Academy of Sciences
Country Russian Federation 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution Early Career Researchers have visited the UK to enhance their laboratory and/or statistical skills. These were 1-3 week visits: Irina Kurina (Institute for monitoring of climatic and ecological systems, SB RAS, Tomsk) visiting M van Hardenbroek at Newcastle University Leonid Khazin (Trofimuk Institute of Petroleum Geology and Geophysics, SB RAS, Novosibirsk) visiting M van Hardenbroek at Newcastle University Liudmila Syrykh (Northern Water Problems Institute Karelian Research Centre, RAS, St. Petersburg) visiting M van Hardenbroek at Newcastle University Eleonora Nasonova (Tyumen Scientific Centre SB RAS, Tyumen) visiting M van Hardenbroek at Newcastle University Ekarina Lukanina (Institute for monitoring of climatic and ecological systems, SB RAS, Tomsk) visiting M van Hardenbroek at Newcastle University Darya Kalashnikova (Institute for monitoring of climatic and ecological systems, SB RAS, Tomsk) visiting Leon Clarke at Manchester Metropolitan University
Collaborator Contribution Russian early career researchers will continue to work on applying these techniques on collaborative projects, where PI or Co-Is will be involved as co-authors.
Impact No published output yeat. Research is interdisciplinary, including environmental science, biology, and geochemistry.
Start Year 2018
 
Description Training visits to UK by Russian early career researchers 
Organisation Russian Academy of Sciences
Country Russian Federation 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution Early Career Researchers have visited the UK to enhance their laboratory and/or statistical skills. These were 1-3 week visits: Irina Kurina (Institute for monitoring of climatic and ecological systems, SB RAS, Tomsk) visiting M van Hardenbroek at Newcastle University Leonid Khazin (Trofimuk Institute of Petroleum Geology and Geophysics, SB RAS, Novosibirsk) visiting M van Hardenbroek at Newcastle University Liudmila Syrykh (Northern Water Problems Institute Karelian Research Centre, RAS, St. Petersburg) visiting M van Hardenbroek at Newcastle University Eleonora Nasonova (Tyumen Scientific Centre SB RAS, Tyumen) visiting M van Hardenbroek at Newcastle University Ekarina Lukanina (Institute for monitoring of climatic and ecological systems, SB RAS, Tomsk) visiting M van Hardenbroek at Newcastle University Darya Kalashnikova (Institute for monitoring of climatic and ecological systems, SB RAS, Tomsk) visiting Leon Clarke at Manchester Metropolitan University
Collaborator Contribution Russian early career researchers will continue to work on applying these techniques on collaborative projects, where PI or Co-Is will be involved as co-authors.
Impact No published output yeat. Research is interdisciplinary, including environmental science, biology, and geochemistry.
Start Year 2018