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Since 2013, the Polar Museum at the Scott Polar Research Institute (SPRI), the UK’s only museum dedicated to the Arctic and Antarctica, has delivered SPRI’s research findings to general audiences in accessible and engaging ways.



The museum has developed innovative new programmes and events which focus on two main areas: diversifying the audiences whom engage with the museum, and stimulating understanding and learning with different groups around the polar regions and environmental change.



The Polar Museum’s Education and Outreach team routinely work with a range of under-represented audiences to share SPRI research with people of all ages and backgrounds through short courses, tours, and through partnering with local charities.

Polar Museum staff have brought museum collections to new sites through the organising of exhibitions featuring SPRI research. Secondary outreach for SPRI research has included substantial media coverage in UK and overseas broadsheets, BBC Online, TV, and radio.

The Polar Museum has undertaken a number of stand-alone or one-off activities about climate change in the Polar regions.



Since August 2013, the Polar Museum has received over 375,000 visitors.  

The museum has received positive feedback for engagement with a range of audiences. In 2015 and 2017 respectively, Antarctic and Arctic tactile maps were designed for use with blind and partially sighted people. The maps have been used by a range of audiences, including attendees of ‘Antarctica Live’ at the Science Museum.

School visits are a major element of learning provision. In summer 2019, the museum invited twelve Year 12 students to co-curate an exhibition about climate change. The project enabled engagement with researchers, who shared their learning with the students.


More information

Institution: University of Cambridge

Researchers: Dr Neil S. Arnold, Dr Marion Bougamont, Dr Michael T. Bravo, Dr Poul Christoffersen, Professor Julian A. Dowdeswell, Dr Richard C. Powell, Dr Gareth Rees, Dr Ian C. Willis

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How to cite

Royal Geographical Society (with IBG) (2023) The Scott Polar Research Institute’s Polar Museum​. Available at  Last accessed on: <date>