The Arctic Council Secretariat (ACS) supports the Chair of the Arctic Council. In the past, the location of the Secretariat was rotated biennially with the Chairmanship of the Arctic Council. Prior to their consecutive chairmanship periods, Norway, the Kingdom of Denmark, and Sweden made a joint agreement to share the Secretariat for the duration of their chairmanship periods. Norway held the chairmanship from 2006-spring 2009; the Kingdom of Denmark from 2009-2011; and Sweden from 2011-2013. During this period the temporary Secretariat was hosted by the Norwegian Polar Institute located at the Fram Centre, Tromsø, Norway.
At the Nuuk Ministerial Meeting May 2011 Arctic Ministers decided to establish the Standing Arctic Council Secretariat at the Fram Centre in Tromsø. The Standing Secretariat became operational 1 June 2013.
According to the Terms of Reference of the Arctic Council Secretariat the ACS is to perform the following functions:
- Administrative and organizational support, including: arranging and servicing meetings as required; transmitting reports to and from Arctic states, Permanent Participants, Working Groups and Task Forces, other subsidiary bodies and Observers; assisting the Chair in drafting meeting documents including final reports; providing services to Permanent Participants and Working Groups without a secretariat; administrative services concerning general correspondence; and archiving of records.
- Communication and outreach, including: operating the Arctic Council website, including web pages of those Working Groups without a secretariat; facilitating and improving the quality and availability of information on the Arctic Council; recording, maintaining and posting, as appropriate, the records of the Arctic Council; facilitating the exchange of information among the Arctic states, Permanent Participants and Observers; and, at the request of SAOs and Permanent Participants, developing strategic communication and outreach plans and other documents under the direct supervision of the Chair, in support of the Arctic Council.
For further information and documents concerning the Arctic Council Secretariat, please see the corresponding category in our Document Archive.
Visit the Contact Us page for contact information to the ACS staff.