The Arctic Marine Ecosystem Research Network (ARCTOS network) was established in 2002 after an initiative of researchers from UiT The Arctic University of Norway, the Norwegian Polar Institute, the University Centre in Svalbard and Akvaplan-Niva. Later the Institute of Marine Research and Nord University joined and together they comprise the six basic ARCTOS institutions.

Mission statement:

ARCTOS combines the expertise of north Norwegian and international institutions to achieve an integrated view of Arctic ecosystems, both locally and with a view across the Arctic. Investigations of biological, physical, and chemical drivers provide a holistic approach to marine ecosystems and across the food chain. In this way we address critical scientific and management questions related to biodiversity, ecological processes, impacts of climate change, human induced and natural variability, system sensitivity and resilience. State-of-the-art research tools, modeling platforms scaled to a variety of levels and processes, and modern infrastructure provide a strong foundation for basic research and student training. ARCTOS has grown considerably since its founding. It is now nationally and internationally recognized in the science community, as well as in industry circles, as a source of high-quality basic and applied research in Arctic marine ecology.