UArctic promotes the competency of, represents the interest of, and stimulates increased collaboration among UArctic members in northern research, innovation, and knowledge generation, as well as uses of traditional knowledge. UArctic is in particular focused on the research needs of the North and the interests of its members and fosters cooperation with other organisations to enhance northern research and science cooperation.

UArctic's Research Area is overseen by Vice-President Research Arja Rautio (Thule Institute, University of Oulu, Finland), and includes the following units:

UArctic Thematic Networks and Research Liaison Office (Thule Institute at the University of Oulu, Finland) supports Thematic Networks, which link educational,  research and outreach activities in key issue areas.

See UArctic's Research Goals 2020