SCOSTEP: About

SCOSTEP organizes and conducts international solar-terrestrial programs (STP) programs of finite duration in cooperation with other International Science Council (ISC) bodies. Results from these programs are shared with the community of SCOSTEP scientists by joining in conducting meetings, conferences, and workshops and by publishing newsletters, handbooks and special journal issues.

SCOSTEP President's Message

 

It is really honorable for me to serve as the President of SCOSTEP.  I will do my best to serve various SCOSTEP efforts to promote solar terrestrial physics (STP). The scientific field of solar-terrestrial physics is rapidly changing, mainly because of expansion of human activities into space and because of growing interest in Earth’s climate change.  The original scientific interest and knowledge are going to be applied to various applications, as represented by the terminologies of “space weather” (short-term variability) and “space climate” (long-term variability).  In this sense, various efforts have been made in recent years (1) to understand the physical mechanisms that cause the observed phenomena and (2) to predict the phenomena that affects human life.  For this understanding and prediction of the variability of the sun-earth system, the connection from the sun to the earth, and from the earth surface to the middle and upper atmosphere, and to geospace is of essential importance.

Under the International Science Council (ISC), SCOSTEP is the only organization to deal with this sun-earth connection.  I will serve on this point to encourage more communication among scientists in different disciplines and regions from the sun to the earth.  I would like to encourage this communication by operating mailing lists, the website, and newsletters, as well as promoting interdisciplinary symposia, conferences and workshops under SCOSTEP.  The participating bodies of SCOSTEP consist of COSPAR, IAU, IUGG (IAGA and IAMAS), IUPAP, SCAR, URSI, and WDS.  This structure of SCOSTEP also allows coordination of the wide scientific area related to solar-terrestrial physics.  I would like to stimulate collaboration with these participating bodies by promoting joint sessions and symposia.

The uniqueness of SCOSTEP is to launch international / interdisciplinary multi-year programs on the sun-earth relationship, such as CAWSES, CAWSES-II and VarSITI.  This is very different from other participating bodies of SCOSTEP.  Through this program, SCOSTEP can address the changing situation of the solar-terrestrial system, providing a timely platform for the community to work together.  The VarSITI (Variability of the Sun and Its Terrestrial Impact, 2014-2018) focused on the decreasing trend of solar activities and its consequences on earth.  The next program, PRESTO – PREdictability of variable Solar-Terrestrial cOupling, is a timely topic for our community due to the increasing interest on the effect of the variability on human activity in space and on earth’s climate.  This direction will also introduce new possibilities for collaboration with the community of space use and applications.  I think SCOSTEP should encourage such collaboration, for example, with the International Space Weather Initiative (ISWI) of the United Nations (UN) Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (COPUOS) and other bodies related to space use and climate change.

Through my past experiences of field measurements and school organizations in developing countries, I feel that governments in developing countries are gradually understanding the importance of space weather research.  This is due to their increased use of satellite signals for communication and navigation applications with the awareness that ionospheric plasma bubbles can degrade these systems significantly.  Under these circumstances, capacity building activities led by SCOSTEP are getting more important for young scientists in the developing countries.  SCOSTEP will continue to encourage more capacity-building activities, by coordinating/supporting international schools, operating the SCOSTEP visiting scholar (SVS) programs for students and young scientists, and distributing a comic series on solar-terrestrial sciences. 

Finally I would like to point out the importance of database construction and open data policies in solar-terrestrial physics.  Since solar-terrestrial physics deals with global-scale phenomena and relies significantly on remote-sensing and in-situ techniques; international collaboration and exchange of various different types of data are essentially important to understand the physical mechanisms of the phenomena.  In that sense, we encourage development of user-friendly databases and data analysis tools as well as efforts of keeping long-term data quality in collaboration with the World Data System (WDS).  

 

Kazuo Shiokawa

SCOSTEP President 2019-2022

September 14, 2019

 

SCOSTEP Mandate

SCOSTEP seeks opportunities for interaction with national and international programs involving Solar-Terrestrial Physics elements. It provides guidance to the STP discipline centers of ISC’s World Data Center system. It attempts to develop and sustain student interest in Sun-Earth connections, to promote efficient exchange of data and information between solar and terrestrial scientists in all countries, and to seek projects and programs that cross over traditional boundaries of physical regions and focused scientific disciplines.

ICSU logo

The Scientific Committee on Solar-Terrestrial Physics (SCOSTEP) was originally established in January 1966 by the XIth General Assembly of the International Council of Scientific Unions (ICSU; now the International Science Council, ISC) as the Inter-Union Commission on Solar-Terrestrial Physics (IUCSTP.) At its XIVth General Assembly in September 1972, ICSU reorganized IUCSTP as a special committee with responsibility for interdisciplinary solar-terrestrial physics programs of finite duration. The designation SCOSTEP took effect in September 1973 after the ratification of a new Constitution by the ICSU Executive Board and General Committee. In September 1978, with the ratification of the current Constitution by the XVIIth ICSU General Assembly, SCOSTEP became a Scientific Committee of ICSU charged with the long-term responsibility to promote international interdisciplinary programs in solar-terrestrial physics. In May 1982, SCOSTEP held its first General Council Meeting under the new Constitution. The Constitution was revised in 1988 and is available in its current form here.

The Scientific Committee On Solar-TErrestrial Physics (SCOSTEP) organizes and conducts international solar-terrestrial physics (STP) programs of finite duration in co-operation with other ISC bodies. They share results of these programs by joining in conducting meetings, conferences, and workshops and by publishing newsletters, handbooks, and special journal issues about these STP programs. SCOSTEP is an outgrowth of earlier bodies in ISC involved in planning and implementing the International Geophysical Year (IGY: 1957-58) and the International Quiet Sun Year (IQSY: 1964-65). Completed SCOSTEP programs include: International Magnetospheric Study (IMS: 1976-79); Solar Maximum Year (SMY: 1979-81); Middle Atmosphere Program (MAP: 1982-85); and Solar-Terrestrial Energy Program (STEP: 1990-97). Four Post-STEP programmes over the period 1998-2002 include: STEP-Results, Applications, and Modeling Phase (SRAMP); International Solar Cycle Study (ISCS); Planetary Scale Mesopause Observing System (PSMOS). Recent programs that have taken place are: Equatorial Processes Including Coupling (EPIC); Climate and Weather of the Sun-Earth System (CAWSES: 2004-2008); CAWSES II (2009-2013); VarSITI (2014-2018). The newest longterm program is PreSTo (2019-2023).

SCOSTEP operates as a Research Programme of the ISC, its General Council providing oversight for SCOSTEP operations and participating in the election of the Executive Officers. A Bureau directs scientific, administrative, and financial activities. They select the Scientific Secretary who administers the Secretariat, organizes meetings, and conducts the financial business of SCOSTEP. An international group of Scientific Discipline Representatives provides advice to SCOSTEP about scientific programs and serves to link activities in their fields to these programs. They lead within SCOSTEP and through other ISC bodies to propose new programs and participate in the Steering Committees and projects of ongoing programs. Funding for these activities comes from ISC annual grants; annual National Adherent subscriptions; and special grants as well as from services provided by host organizations. The Scientific Secretary provides an annual audited financial statement to ISC and the Bureau. SCOSTEP seeks opportunities for interaction with national and international programs involving STP elements. It provides guidance to the STP discipline centers of ISC’s World Data Center system. It attempts to develop and sustain student interest in Sun-Earth Connections, to promote efficient exchange of data and information between STP scientists in all countries, and to seek projects and programs that cross over traditional boundaries of physical regions and focused scientific disciplines.

The governing document for SCOSTEP is the SCOSTEP Constitution. The original Constitution was ratified by ICSU Executive Board and General Committee in 1973. Since then, it has undergone several revisions and updates. The most recent version is available here.

As directed by the Constitution, the governing body of SCOSTEP is the SCOSTEP Bureau. The Bureau is comprised of SCOSTEP’s President, the Vice President, the Representatives of the ISC Participating Bodies, and the Scientific Secretary (ex. officio). The Bureau directs scientific, administrative and financial activities. They select the Scientific Secretary who administers the Secretariat, organizes meetings, and conducts the financial business of SCOSTEP under the direction of the Executive Officers and Bureau. The Bureau usually meets annually. If necessary, additional meetings may be convened by the President.

 

The SCOSTEP General Council is comprised of Adherent Representatives and is chaired by the President. The Council reviews the scientific, financial, and administrative activities of SCOSTEP and, if necessary, refers matters to the Bureau for further consideration.

 

An international group of Scientific Discipline Representative provides advice to SCOSTEP about scientific programs and serves as links between national and regional activities in their fields and SCOSTEP international scientific programs. They lead within SCOSTEP and through other ISC bodies to propose new programs and participate in the Steering Committees and projects of ongoing programs.

K. Shiokawa

President

Kazuo Shiokawa
(Japan)

D. Marsh

Vice-President

Daniel Marsh
(USA, UK)

N. Gopalswamy

Past President

Natchimuthuk (Nat) Gopalswamy

(USA)

P. Doherty

Scientific Secretary (ex officio)

Patricia Doherty
(USA)

Representatives of Participating Bodies

T. Nakamura

COSPAR

Yoshizumi Miyoshi
(Japan)

R. Lukianova

IAGA

Renata Lukianova
(Russia)

P. Pilewski

IAMAS

Peter Pilewski
(USA)

K-S Cho

IAU

Kyunk-Suk Cho
(South Korea)

P. Subramanian

IUPAP

Prasad Subramanian
(India)

A. Seppala

SCAR

Annika Seppälä
(Finland)

J. Chau

URSI

Jorge L. Chau
(Germany)

A. Chambodut

ISC-WDS

Aude Chambodut
(France)

Participating ISC Bodies

International Science Council (ISC): President: Daya Reddy; President Elect: Peter Gluckman; Past President: Gordon McBean; Vice Presidents: Elisa Reis and Jinghai Li; Secretary: Alik Ismail-Zadeh, https://council.science

Committee on Space Research (COSPAR): President: Lennard A. Fisk; Vice-Presidents: Karl-Heinz Glassmeier and Mikhail Panasyuk; Executive Director: J.-L. Fellous, https://cosparhq.cnes.fr/

International Association of Geomagnetism and Aeronomy (IAGA): President: Mioara Mandea; Vice-Presidents: Alan Thomson and Andrew Yau; Secretary General: Monika Korte,  http://www.iugg.org/IAGA/

International Association of Meteorology and Atmospheric Sciences (IAMAS): President: Joyce Penner; Vice-Presidents: John Burrows and Mary Scholes; Secretary General: Steven Ackerman,  http://www.iamas.org/

International Astronomical Union (IAU): President: Ewine F. van Dishoeck; President-Elect: Debra M. Elmegreen; Vice Presidents: Laura Ferrarese, John B. Hearnshaw, Ajit K. Kembhavi, Daneila Lazzaro, Boris M. Shustov and Junichi Watanabe; General Secretary: Maria Teresa V. T. Lago, https://www.iau.org/

International Union of Pure and Applied Physics (IUPAP): President: Michael Spiro; Past President: Bruce Kellar; Secretary General: Kok Khoo Phua; Secretariat: Maitri Bobba and Sun Han,  http://www.iupap.org/

International Union of Geodesy and Geophysics (IUGG): President: Kathryn Whaler; President-Elect: Chris Rizos; Secretary General: Alexander Rudloff; Secretariat: Franz G. Kuglitsch,  http://www.iugg.org/

Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research (SCAR): President: Steven Chown; Vice Presidents: Jefferson Cardia Simões, Catherine Ritz, Gary Wilson, and M. Ravichandran; Executive Director: Chandrika Nath, http://www.scar.org

International Union of Radio Science (URSI): President: Makoto Ando; Past President: Paul Cannon; Secretary General: Peter Van Daele, http://www.ursi.org

World Data System (WDS): Chair: Sandy Harrison; Vice Chairs: Alex de Sherbinin and Ingrid Dillo; Executive Director: Rorie Edmunds, http://www.icsu-wds.org

Affiliated Member:

Latin-American Association of Space Geophysics (ALAGE): President: Juan Valdivia; Vice President: Clezio De Nardin; Secretaries: Maria Graciela Molina and Americo Gonzalez Esparza, http://www.alage.org