Svalbard Science Forum (SSF) plays an important role in one of the world's most attractive destinations for polar and climate research.

Hundreds of researchers from approx. 30 nations run research and monitoring programs in Svalbard every year. Close to 3,600 projects are registered in the Research in Svalbard (RiS) database -- so far.

By providing information about infrastructure and activities and by facilitating coordination, collaboration and data sharing between researchers, the SSF averts unnecessary duplication and encourages a smaller environmental footprint from research in Svalbard. Better coordinated activities also advances more unique and in-depth scientific research.

The Ministry of Education and Research laid down the mandate for the SSF in 2011:
The objective of the forum is to achieve better coordination of research activities in Svalbard, to provide integrated and easily accessible information about research currently ongoing in Svalbard, and to expand and strengthen collaboration between individual researchers and research institutions – both Norwegian and foreign – that are involved in research activities in Svalbard. Another objective of the SSF is to make it easier for Norwegian and foreign researchers and research institutions to obtain the support and guidance they need concerning the infrastructure and services available to researchers in Svalbard.

The SSF is coordinated by the Research Council of Norway, which also employs the staff of the SSF secretariat. The offices of the SSF secretariat are located in Longyearbyen.