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2020 ARENA Program

The ARENA program is designed specifically for individuals living and working in remote circumpolar Arctic communities. Combining visits to communities and participant knowledge exchanges with presentations and laboratory demonstrations, ARENA connects current and emerging energy professionals with hands-on learning experiences, mentors, and project development leaders from throughout the circumpolar north. The ARENA 2020 participants will visit community energy projects in Canada, Alaska, and Iceland.

Curriculum Overview

Canada - POSTPONED until 2021

The Canada on-site session will be based at the Canadian High Arctic Research Station in Cambridge Bay, Nunavut, with visits to community-scale projects within the territory of Nunavut (Rankin Inlet & Iqaluit). The focus will be on community and Indigenous energy development, ownership and management, capacity building, and the roles of governments and utilities in building success.

Alaska - POSTPONED until 2021

The Alaska on-site session will be held in Fairbanks and Kodiak, with a focus on energy system integration, northern energy project management, high penetration variable renewable resources, wind energy, hydroelectric energy, energy storage, utility governance, and supportive energy policy. 

Iceland - POSTPONED until 2021

The Iceland Geothermal Training Program on-site session will focus on value-added and cascading uses of available energy resources. A combination of lectures and visits to various energy and business sites in Iceland will be employed.

Learn more about COVID-19 related delays.


The ARENA program is designed for current and emerging leaders involved in community-scale renewable energy projects or initiatives. The curriculum is designed for a non-technical audience with a focus on project management, networking, and knowledge sharing to catalyze power systems integration across small communities in the north.

Participants will be selected via consensus of a committee composed of individuals identified by the ARENA 2020 co-leads. Selection is competitive and based on the strength of application as well as individual interviews (conducted via Skype video or similar tool). Criteria for consideration as a member of the ARENA 2020 cohort are:

  • Citizen of one of the eight Arctic States or observer nations of the Arctic Council and/or affiliated with an Arctic Council Permanent Participant group; 
  • Prior knowledge of energy projects relevant in an Arctic context;
  • Articulation of an energy project relevant to their community and region that they will commit to plan and refine over the course of the program;
  • Good English language communication skills;
  • Commitment to participate in all aspects of the program and to comply with program expectations for preparation and conduct; and
  • Support from their employer to make available the time required to participate in all program activities.

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