Climate change is accelerating the transformation of environmental, social and cultural landscapes across the Arctic and sub-Arctic. The implications of these changes, including their global impact, have yet to be comprehensively monitored and evaluated. Upon the request of Professor Jean Malaurie, UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador in charge of arctic polar issues, and with his active collaboration, an international experts meeting is to be held in Monaco from 3-6 March 2009 under the auspices of UNESCO. H.S.H. Prince Albert II of Monaco has agreed to provide his support for this effort to address the knowledge gap and identify the most significant scientific, social, cultural and educational challenges that need to be met in order to ensure the region's sustainable development.