Swedish Polar Research Secretariat

Photo: H Tornberg

About Sweden’s National Antarctic Program

COMNAP Representative (MNAP): Katarina Gardfeldt​, Director-General
(DMNAP): Magnus Augner, Head of Department

The Swedish Polar Research Secretariat is a government agency that promotes and co-ordinates Swedish polar research, to follow and plan research and development, as well as to organise and lead research expeditions to the Arctic and Antarctic regions. Sweden is also dedicated to protecting the Antarctic environment and has been a signatory to the Antarctic Treaty since 1961.

To carry out our scientific goals, Sweden operates two seasonal stations, Svea and Wasa. The larger of the two, with a 16-person capacity is Wasa Research Station, built in 1988 in Dronning Maud Land. The Svea Research Station was built in 1987 in the Heimefront Range about 350 km from the coast. It is primarily used as a seasonal station for summer field camps. The icebreaker Oden has been a part of the Swedish Polar Program since in 1989 traveling in both hemispheres. However, since 2012 Oden has only been used for expeditions in the Arctic.

Wasa Research Station


Svea Research Station

The Organizational Structure of the Swedish National Antarctic Program

The Swedish Polar Research Secretariat is a government agency under the Ministry of Education and Research that promotes and co-ordinates Swedish polar research. Specifically in the Antarctic, the program is known as SWEDARP (Swedish Antarctic Research Programme).

The Swedish Polar Research Secretary has a staff of about 30 in various departments: strategic planning & communication, ship-based research support, land-based research support, and administration. The Swedish Polar Research Secretariat is a single-council-authority, which means that the head of authority, (i.e. the Director-General) is completely responsible for all activities. The Government has appointed an Advisory Council that will provide public insight in the organization and give the Director-General advice.

Our Science Program

Sweden participates in numerous science programs. Examples of research projects in recent years are: Ocean Forced Melting of the West Antarctic Ice Shelves (part of the TARSAN research project), Creating Cultural Heritage in Antarctica (CHAQ), and Ice Sheet Volume Changes in Dronning Maud Land (MAGIC-DML). Any Swedish citizen wishing to apply for funding can do so. Resources are also available for citizens of other nations.

Wasa Research Station is situated close to the Finnish station Aboa which forms the basis for close collaboration between the Swedish and the Finnish Antarctic Research Programs. Furthermore, the Swedish Polar Research Secretariat has a collaboration with SOOS, the South Ocean Observing System.

The Secretariat is also upholding the tradition of allocating space for artists on Swedish research expeditions, as do several other nations. The arts are interpreted in the broad sense and is not limited to the visual arts.

Our Contact Details

Postal address
c/o Luleå University of Technology
SE-971 87 Luleå

E-mail: office@polar.se
Phone: +46 70 550 23 93
Fax: +46 8 450 25 99