Greenland ice loss quadrupled over the last two decades and presently accounts for one quarter of global sea level rise. The ice loss is due to changes in surface mass balance and ice sheet dynamics associated with rising air and ocean temperatures. The associated increasing freshwater discharge is impacting the regional ocean, including its ecosystems, and has the potential to impact the large-scale North Atlantic circulation. Thus, Greenland's changes are having far-reaching consequences for global societies, yet the mechanisms responsible for these changes are not well understood. Dynamic ice loss, in particular, was likely triggered by changes at the margins of marine-terminating glaciers, through ice/ocean/atmosphere processes that are either absent or poorly represented in climate, ice sheet and ocean models. The interaction of the ocean, the glaciers and atmosphere at Greenland?s margins is a new research frontier. The complex processes involved include the coupling of multiple components of the Earth system, the challenges of obtaining and integrating diverse data from this region, and of modeling such a complex system. These challenges make this a problem that can only be addressed by bringing together multiple disciplines, including data management, collaboratively exploring diverse approaches and working across national borders. This project establishes a network to help scientists working in this area to share their data and work collaboratively.
The goal of this project is to substantially enhance multi-disciplinary activities and collaboration through the establishment of the GRISO (Greenland Ice Sheet Ocean) Science Network - an international, multidisciplinary, open network of scientists and cyberinfrastructure experts. Participants have a shared interested in advancing collective understanding of problems related to Greenland Ice Sheet change and its impact on regional and global climate. GRISO RCN activities will bring together scientists focused on all aspects of ice/ocean/atmosphere/climate data in Greenland and provide a framework for productive collaborative interaction. Specific objectives include two workshops, and a series of synthesis efforts. Additionally, a virtual data portal, leveraging existing infrastructure, will make interdisciplinary data submission and data availability easier and promote uniform and appropriate data management practices. The RCN builds on activities initiated by the former GRISO US CLIVAR Working Group and explicitly addresses priorities identified in a report from an international workshop held in 2013.