Bodø in spring. Photo: Kent Even Grundstad

The suggestion for establishing an international association to represent Arctic social scientists was made at the Conference on Coordination of Research in the Arctic held in Leningrad in 1988. Two years later, in 1990, the International Arctic Social Sciences Association was founded in Fairbanks, Alaska, at a meeting held in conjunction with the 7th Inuit Studies Conference. 

From its foundation in 1990 until 1992, the IASSA Secretariat was housed at the Department of Geography, McGill University in Montreal, Canada. In the following years the Secretariat has been located at different places:

1992 to 1995: University of Lapland, Arctic Center, Rovaniemi, Finland
1995 to 1998: University of Copenhagen, Department of Eskimology, Copenhagen, Denmark
1998 to 2001: GÉTIC (Groupe d'études inuit et circumpolaires), Université Laval, Quebec City, Canada
2001 to 2004: University of Alaska Fairbanks, Department of Anthropology, Fairbanks, Alaska, USA
2004 to 2008: Ilisimatusarfik, the University of Greenland, Nuuk, Greenland
2008 to 2011: Stefansson Arctic Institute, Akureyri, Iceland
2011 to 2014: University of Northern British Columbia, Prince George, British Columbia, Canada
2014 to 2017: Umeå University, ARCUM - Arctic Centre, Umeå, Sweden
2017 to 2021: University of Northern Iowa, ARCTICenter, Cedar Falls, USA

Since 2021, the IASSA Secretariat is located at Nord University and Nordland Research Institute in Bodø, Norway.

IASSA Presidents:

Grete Hovelsrud (2021-)
Andrey N. Petrov (2017-2021)
Peter Sköld (2014-2017)
Gail Fondahl (2011-2014)
Joan Nymand Larsen (2008-2011)
Yvon Csonka (2004-2008)
Peter Schweitzer (2001-2004)
Gérard Duhaime (1998-2001)
Jens Dahl (1995-1998)
Ludger Müller-Wille (1990-1995)


Contact Information

IASSA Secretariat

Nord University
Universitetsalleen 11
P.o. Box 1490
8049 BODØ

Phone:  +47 75 51 79 91

Contact information



Information on previous IASSA Secretariats can be found at the IASSA history page.


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