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  1. Russian permafrost regions are unparalleled in extent, history of development, population presence, and the scale of economic activities. This special issue, «Permafrost Regions in Transition», provides a timely opportunity to (a) examine major issues associated with changing permafrost conditions in natural environments and areas of economic development; (b) present insights into new methods of permafrost investigations; and (c) describe new opportunities and risks threatening sustainable development of Arctic populations and industrial centers in Russia. The issue begins with papers focused on methods of permafrost research, followed by papers focused on examining changes in permafrost under natural conditions, and in Arctic settlements. The last two papers examine potential impacts of permafrost degradation on the Russian economy and potential health implications. 
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  2. Abstract

    Stephen Taber's early work on ice segregation and frost heaving was far ahead of its time. His laboratory experiments regarding ice segregation led to our current understanding of frost heave by civil and geotechnical engineers building roads and other structures in cold regions. It also laid the foundation for later process‐oriented field studies of cold‐climate geomorphic processes. Taber's 1943 regional monograph on the origin and history of perennially frozen ground in Alaska, published by the Geological Society of America, was the earliest example of regional cryostratigraphy, and pioneered the regional permafrost and Quaternary studies undertaken later by Katasonov, Popov, Mackay, Péwé, Hopkins, and others. An important dimension of Taber's Alaska work was his application of knowledge gained through laboratory experimentation to the interpretation of ground‐ice exposures in the field. While S. W. Muller is widely regarded as the “father” of permafrost studies in North America, Taber is properly viewed as the “progenitor” of cryostratigraphic studies, although he is not yet widely regarded as such. This study uses archival resources to provide historical context regarding the development of Taber's monograph, to investigate details about the review and publication process it underwent, and to explore the question of why it remains undervalued.

     
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