Mistra Arctic Futures and Mistra Arctic Sustainabilities are co-presenting a plenary panel at the International Congress of Arctic Social Scientists VIII. The purpose of this panel is to present insights from some of the projects in the initial Arctic Futures program, as well as goals for the subsequent initiative, in order to provoke discussion of lessons from the role of social sciences and the humanities in Arctic sustainability research. The presentations will highlight the theoretical and empirical outcomes of the initial Mistra program and how these will inform research in the new initiative. It will also address two challenges with considerable relevance to the future of the Arctic – working in an interdisciplinary program in the context of the increasing importance of ‘strategic environmental research’, and working in a situation where the funder has expectations on results being directly useful for policy processes and stakeholders. A livestream is available at www.unbc.ca/livestream and we will also upload the presentation afterwards.