The EMERGE Institute, a NSF-funded Biology Integration Institute, consists of over ninety participants at varying career stages and disciplines from universities around the globe. The central aim of EMERGE is to investigate the EMergent Ecosystem Response to ChanGE in the model peatland ecosystem Stordalen Mire, located in subarctic Sweden using a broad sweep of scientific sampling and analytical techniques. EMERGE uses a multi-pronged approach to foster an inclusive transdisciplinary research environment for all EMERGE participants through mentorship and training.
Annual fieldwork campaigns to Stordalen Mire, a semi-remote field site in northern Sweden, are an integral part of the Institute and involve the strategic coordination of EMERGE team members from the five main research activities ranging in discipline from microbiology to remote sensing. The EMERGE Field Team (FT) spans graduate students, post-docs, and faculty members as well as a group of undergraduate students participating in a Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program. The EMERGE FT lives together at the Abisko Scientific Research Station (ANS) and works intensively together at Stordalen Mire, in the ANS laboratories, and at other nearby field sites.
This comprehensive Field Safety & Logistics Handbook (hereafter referred to as ‘handbook’) was created to act not only as a framework for discussing fieldwork safety policies and procedures among the EMERGE FT leading up to and during each year’s field campaign, but also as a way for EMERGE to set standards for safety training, communication, and conduct. This handbook contains sections on Field Site Information, Fieldwork Preparation, the FT Community Agreement, the Inclusive Risk Assessment (EMERGE-IRA) and Emergency Response Procedures and more. Each member of the FT is expected to complete a Pre-Departure Checklist before departing for fieldwork, which includes providing detailed travel and lodging information, travel insurance information for their home institution, and completing several required trainings including a First Aid & CPR course, a sexual harrassment in fieldwork prevention training, and reading materials on local and Indigenous cultures in Sweden. The handbook is reviewed in detail by members of the FT at several Pre-Departure meetings in addition to discussing sampling protocols. FT members are able to provide suggestions and modifications to the FT Community Agreement during these meetings. The EMERGE-IRA is also discussed in detail during the pre-departure meetings with FT members discussing strategies for physical and psychological hazard mitigation, paying attention to the unique risk factors of marginalized geoscientists.
This handbook is part of a larger ‘toolkit’ in development by EMERGE which shares a thorough series of research and training tools for conducting transdisciplinary research that is not only cutting-edge but also inclusive. The complete toolkit will be made available on the EMERGE website.
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)
Burke, Sophia A., "EMERGE Institute Field Safety & Logistics Handbook" (2022). Earth Systems Research Center. 218.