Conducting research in Svalbard

Arctic fieldwork presents a different set of challenges than fieldwork in many other places. The harsh climate, complicated logistics, safety concerns, and legislation are important factors to take into consideration when planning research in Svalbard.

Start your preparations early. Register your project in the Research in Svalbard portal (RiS).

Applications for environmental permits is to be submitted to the Governor of Svalbard through the RiS database. Also use the guide for scientists from the Governor of Svalbard. Obtaining a permit will take a minimum of four weeks and may take longer if your application does not meet the requirements.

- Svalbard Act 17 July 1925
- The Svalbard Environmental Protection Act
- Laws and regulations

Please note that many of the regulations and restrictions that apply in Svalbard vary with the season, and that different rules apply to residents and visitors. A selection of the regulations most relevant to research and fieldwork is presented on the website of the Governor of Svalbard.

- Regulations for fieldwork

Protected areas:
Before leaving for fieldwork, make sure you have checked the regulations and hold the necessary permits for the area you are visiting.


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