Island Studies News | December 2022

Island Studies News | December 2022

A note from the editor:
Hello and welcome to the December issue of Island Studies News!

It's beginning to look a lot like, well...winter anyway, so get yourself a warm drink and curl up with this month's newsletter! 

If you're looking for some holiday activities, the King's Playhouse in Georgetown has released their December Calendar. If you're a chocoholic like me, you might want to try following the Coastal Drive Hot Chocolate Trail! Check out a full list of PEI's Christmas Fairs here.

December also means that it's awards season, and we would like to congratulate Bren on winning the CBC Poetry Award and MAIS student Bailey Clark for winning the MacLauchlan Prize for Effective Writing: congratulations!
Don't forget, the deadline for submitting your abstract for our Turning the Tide: Climate Change, Social Change, and Islandness conference is the end of January, so start brainstorming!
If you're looking for me, I'll be digging my decorations out of the closet.
Happy holidays!
          - Megan Lane
Bright Spot: Taiwan is transforming unused metro stations into underground vertical farms

Taiwan is using vacant metro spaces to grow highly in demand, sustainable, clean and organic food.

Advanced and efficient vertical farming methods are being harnessed to help feed commuters with fresh produce.

Located at capital city Taipei’s Nanjing-Fushing Station, the 40 square-metre ‘Metro Fresh’ hydroponic farm grows lettuce under LED lighting in a sterile environment to eliminate the use of pesticides and herbicides.


Latest from Island Studies at UPEI

Yarns and Yarns: a webinar series featuring knitting and storytelling from across the North

Island Studies at UPEI is part of the newly created Thematic Network on Northern and Arctic Island Studies Research, one of the thematic networks of the University of the Arctic. Led by Drs. Andrew Jennings (University of the Highlands and Islands) and Laurie Brinklow (UPEI), the thematic network (so far!) consists of members from Memorial University (Newfoundland and Labrador), Holar University (Iceland), TalTech Kuressaare (Saaremaa, Estonia), the Icelandic Tourism Research Institute (Akureyri, Iceland) and Universities of the Faroe Islands, Uppsala (Sweden), Northern British Columbia, and Greenland. The objective is to look at Northern and Arctic islands through the interdisciplinary lens of Island Studies and focus on issues such as island-appropriate economic development, tourism, peripherality, sustainability and climate change, and island cultures and histories, among others. Our goal is to work closely with island and Indigenous communities throughout the North.
We are now undertaking our first project for the New Year: a series of webinars called "Yarns and Yarns," featuring knitting and storytelling from across the North. More details to follow in the coming weeks!
If anyone is interested in learning more about the Network, check out Andrew's video describing our work! And if you'd like to join, please reach out to Andrew or Laurie.

Visit the webpage for more information

Island Studies Press

ISP's Bren Simmers has won the 2022 CBC Poetry Prize for her poetry collection Spell World Backwards.
Bren will receive $6,000, attend a writing residency in Banff and have her work published on CBC Books!
Simmers' poems were published on CBC Books. You can read a sample of Spell World Backwards here.

Bren is the author of four books, including the wilderness memoir Pivot Point and Hastings-Sunrise, which was a finalist for the Vancouver Book Award. Her most recent collection of poetry is If, When. She was previously longlisted for the CBC Poetry Prize in 2013 for I Blame MASH For My Addiction To MLS and in 2012 for Science Lessons. Check out for more information

Listen to Bren Simmers' interview on On The Coast with Gloria Macarenko

As always, we'd like to remind you that all of the Island Studies Press books that you read about in our newsletter are available for sale in bookstores and online!

UPEI Bookstore Online | Island Studies Press website

IIS Executive Committee

Get to know the people behind the Institute of Island Studies at UPEI!

Dr. Joshua MacFadyen
Dr. Joshua MacFadyen is Associate Professor and Canada Research Chair in Geospatial Humanities at the University of Prince Edward Island. His research focuses on energy transitions in Canada, and he leads the GeoREACH lab at UPEI which supports Geospatial Research in Atlantic Canadian History. He teaches courses on digital humanities and leadership in the Applied Communication, Leadership, and Culture program in the Faculty of Arts at UPEI. His most recent book, Flax Americana: A History of the Fibre and Oil that Covered a Continent (McGill-Queens University Press, 2018), was a finalist for the Governor General’s History Award. He also published an edited collection with Edward MacDonald and Irené Novaczek called Time and a Place: An Environmental History of Prince Edward Island (McGill-Queens and Island Studies Press, 2016). He is co-editor of the international journal Historical Methods: A Journal of Quantitative and Interdisciplinary History.  
To learn more about the governance of the IIS, visit

Master of Arts in Island Studies (MAIS) Students & Alumni

MAIS Student Bailey Wins MacLauchlan Prizes for Effective Writing

UPEI celebrated the MacLauchlan Prizes for Effective Writing on Friday, November 18. This was the 11th year for the awards, but the 9th for an in-person celebration and the first one since 2019. The awards were presented to recipients, acknowledging their effective writing skills - a foundational skill for academic success and lifelong learning.

The awards, presented to 36 students and one faculty member this year, were established in 2011 by the MacLauchlan family to honour H. Wade MacLauchlan's contributions to the University and his 12 years of service as UPEI president and vice-chancellor from 1999–2011.

Bailey Clark, a Faculty of Arts student and an award winner, read an excerpt from his piece entitled “Who Wants a Car, Anyway?: Improved Roads, Snowplows, and the Transportation Revolution on Prince Edward Island, 1900-1970."

“Writing my honours thesis gave me a great sense of purpose—here were some of my fellow Islanders who may no longer be with us but whose challenges and achievements I could give a voice to,” said Clark. “The long process of learning about my topic, digging into the primary research, and presenting it in an honours essay took a lot of effort, and, throughout this journey, I grew as a writer and a person. This project has meant a lot to me, and I was pleased to share some of it with others at the awards ceremony.”

Islands and Tourism Class Takes Fieldtrip to Cavendish
L-R: Phil Davison, Matthew Hatvany, Yue "Craig" Su, Tian Zhou, Mah Ara Ahmadi, Hung-En "Henry" Liao, Paul Lin, and Akinkunle Akinbinu.
MAIS students from the Islands and Tourism class visited Cavendish mid-November to take in some iconic tourism sites and talk about sustainability in this small North Shore community that shrinks from a population of tens of thousands in the summer to a few hundred in winter.
They met with one of the co-owners of Sandspit Amusement Park to learn about its history and trajectory as a PEI tourism destination. They heard about the damage post-tropical storm Fiona did to the dunes along the North Shore. And they visited Green Gables Historic site and walked through the woods, witnessing some of Fiona's devastation. A few students got a special tour of the house, and one even did a video call with her mom back home in Iran, recalling the hours staying up late to watch Anne of Green Gables and Road to Avonlea on TV. Thank you to Dr. Phil Davison for leading the tour and bringing students the flavour of Cavendish in the off-season.
At Sandspit, Cavendish, Prince Edward Island
If you’re part of the fast-growing group of MAIS Alumni, we’d love to hear what you’re up to! Please send a note to

To learn more about the Master of Arts in Island Studies (MAIS) program, visit

We are now accepting applications for September 2023!

PEI Community Announcements 

2022 Charlottetown Christmas Festival Nov 18 – Jan 2

The 2022 Charlottetown Christmas Festival, a product of Discover Charlottetown, is back November 18, 2022 – January 2, 2023. We’ll have the return of Whoville, the outdoor Victorian Christmas Market presented by the Confederation Court Mall Nov 25 – 27, the Confederation Centre of the Arts Holiday Programming & Light Show, and more. Plus lots of other craft & artisans markets, festive programming & events like wine tastings, horse & wagon rides, Breakfasts with Santa, live music & carolling, children’s entertainment & more!

As the days get shorter and we move into the darker time of the year, there’s always something a little special that weaves itself through our days.
It might be the forest of Christmas trees that suddenly spring up in our halls and corridors, the scent of cider wafting through the building, the warm,fuzzy holiday sweaters worn by Kristi or the snazzy earrings that Amy dreams up daily.
Whatever the reason, we’re grateful for all of the light and the darkness in the past year, and we’re tickled that this final month will be filled with some delightful shows and events that will spark your creativity and bring a little more joy to your world.

Holiday Workshops
  • Saturday, December 3rd: Transforming Your Table with John David MacBride
  • Monday, December 5th: Holiday Decor Workshop with Jamie Rice
The Semi-Amazing, Sort-of-Sensational, Almost Unbelievable Christmas Spectacular!
  • December 9 at 7:30pm
  • December 10 at 2pm
  • December 11 at 2pm
Tickets: Pay What You Can

Ledwell & Haines Christmas Special
  • December 18th at 2pm
Tickets: $30 (taxes & fees included)

Dufflebag Theatre’s Robin Hood

  • December 29th at 6pm

Read full King's Playhouse newsletter here...

News From Other Islands 

Researchers work with First Nations to create housing self-sufficiency in remote communities

Fighting for What's Theirs:
The Innu of Labrador are without a modern treaty that would allow them to take back control of their governance, lives and destiny. Is it the missing piece to solving long-rooted problems?

Global North countries tout island initiatives at COP27

As rich nations haggle over climate solutions, storm-ravaged Caribbean is taking matters into its own hands

Upcoming Island-centric Events 

Islands Matter 'Mental Health Research and Scottish Islands' with Professor Sarah-Anne Munoz
12.00PM Thu 08 December

Previous UHI research has shown that many island interviewees, both healthcare professionals and community members, perceived gaps in mental health services and they highlighted the difficulty of accessing specialist services and facilities, which are often based in Inverness, particularly in crises.

Prof. Munoz has worked with researchers from Texas A & M University in Kingsville to pilot the use of a modified Delphi method to bring community members together and facilitate discussion so that the community members can identify needs and solutions in their areas. This method has recently been piloted by a UHI team within the Western Isles. This seminar will reflect on the modified Delphi method’s use in the Western Isles, the findings from the pilot and the research gaps in island mental health research more generally.

The Scottish pilot was funded by the Scottish Rural Health Partnership.

Presenter: Prof. Sarah-Anne Munoz, Professor of Rural Health, UHI

Co-authors: Dr. Liz Ellis, Research Fellow, UHI; Dr. Sara Bradley, Research Fellow, UHI; Hereward Proops, Lecturer, UHI Outer Hebrides; Rachel Erskine, Lecturer, UHI Outer Hebrides

The Islands Matter webinars are the result of a collaboration between Dr Andrew Jennings Institute for Northern Studies UHI, Professor Frank Rennie UHI Outer Hebrides and Dr Beth Mouat UHI Shetland . This series of webinars was set up to address the hunger in the Scottish islands to hear from experts based in other islands worldwide, and to help inform the UHI Islands’ Strategy.

Register here.

Recent Webinar & Event Recordings

Enshrined: Island Tourism and the Confederation Story with Dr. Ed MacDonald
Recorded November 15th, 2022 as part of our Island Lecture Series

**Due to technical difficulties, the video was cut off at 40 minutes. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.**

For over a century, the three staple constants in Prince Edward Island tourism have been our pastoral landscape, Anne of Green Gables, and the Island's claim as the "Birthplace of Confederation." But becoming the "Cradle of Confederation" was not as easy as it sounds, and the story of how Island tourism promoters recognized the tourism potential of that claim, then gradually convinced Canadians that it was both true and important presents a fascinating case study of "site sacralization" and branding in Canada's Garden Province. For this lecture, Dr. Ed MacDonald will draw upon research conducted by him and his co-author, Dr. Alan MacEachern, for their new book, The Summer Trade: A History of Tourism on Prince Edward Island.

Watch now...

Recent Podcast Recordings

the hidden island
Season 3, Episode 2: emails and dances: 2SLGBTQ+ history in the late 1900s

Fiona is joined by Evelyn Bradley as co-host in this episode all about 2SLGBTQIA+ history on the Island. We discuss how and where members of the queer community gathered in the 1970s to the 1990s (think: emails and word of mouth invitations before the internet came into play), and what our history might look like if it wasn’t heteronormative.

Features guest interviews: Dave Stewart and Treena Smith.

Listen now

Coastal Connections
Episode 10: Keeping history alive through storytelling (Pt II)

In this episode we explore traditional folk music and how it is a powerful oral storytelling tool that carries culture, tradition, history, and knowledge across generations, shaping people’s identity today. We speak with the infamous musical duo Fergus O’Byrne and Jim Payne who are spreading traditional folk music around the island – and the world – keeping Newfoundland and Labrador culture alive. We also had the pleasure of being joined by Darrell Power, former member of Great Big Sea, who has since established two recording studios among other projects. Our guests share their relationship with music, what traditional folk music sounds like and means to them, and how growing up draped in an era of culture and music influenced their musical careers. Joining Dr. Sondra Eger is co-host Sara Langer, a PhD student at Grenfell Campus Memorial University who also led the development of this episode.

Listen now
Big Catch, Undecided Risks in Alaska's Salmon Enhancement Program - NAJFM

Welcome to Pubcasts. This episode is called: Big Catch, Undecided Risks: Perspectives of Risk, Reward, and Trade-Offs in Alaska's Salmon Enhancement Program

This latest entry in our series of Pubcasts, audio-book style recordings of peer reviewed scientific research, is an article about the human dimensions of hatcheries and stocking in Alaska's salmon enhancement program. This paper was written and recorded by Hannah L. Harrison ( and Julie Gould.

Listen now

Do you have a new book, journal article, blog post, interview, podcast, video, or other publication to share?
Let us know so we can share your news with the community!

Recent Publications

As always, this is by no means an exhaustive list. If there's something that you think we've missed, or if you have any forthcoming publications that we should be aware of, please let us know!

Reading and Mapping the Worldviews of Island States through National Anthems: Celebrating Deity, Identity, Landscapes and Unity
Abstract National anthems, along with the national flag, stamps and monuments, are important features of a state’s identity. The lyrics and music instill patriotism and nationalism on holidays, at sporting events, and in children at school. This study examines the lyrics of 42 Caribbean, Pacific, African, Asian and European island state anthems to identify patterns and themes. While word frequencies differ between the regions, dominant themes reflect unity, hope, a spiritual/divine heritage, home and homeland, and pleasant environmental settings. Themes reflecting times of strife, struggles and conflict are also evident.


Latest Journal Issues:

Marine Policy
Island Studies Journal
Volume 17,  No. 2

Scholarly Papers

See More!


Aquatic Mythologies and Monstrosities:

Okinawan Journal of Island Studies (OJIS ) 
Vol.3 Number 2 (March 2022)
Special Issue on Resilience & Vitality

PART II: Overcoming the Past

Small States and Territories

Vol. 5, No. 2, November 2022

Anthropological Forum,
Volume 32, Issue 1 (2022)
Revisiting Ideas of Power in Southeast Asia,
Guest Editor: Hjorleifur Jonsson

Calls for Papers and Submissions

Turning the Tide: Climate Change, Social Change, and Islandness – The Second International Conference on Small Island States and Sub-national Island Jurisdictions.

[Submissions close January 31st, 2023]

Islands are at the front lines of climate change. With close proximity to the oceans, they are often the first to experience land loss due to sea-level rise and erosion, the often catastrophic effects of extreme weather events, and the life-changing effects of changes in seasonality and temperature change on land and in the ocean. 

But what of social change on islands brought about by climate change? How are the effects of climate change impacting on islandness?

This transdisciplinary conference sets out to explore the theme of climate change and social change on islands through various sub-themes listed below.

  • Food sovereignty
  • Ocean health: ecosystem functionality (terrestrial, ocean, and the ecotone)
  • Diverse knowledges
  • Health and well-being
  • Material culture: lived experiences of the everyday
  • Climate and social justice
  • Methods: contextualising in context
  • Changing livelihoods
  • Gender and intergenerational framing

We want to share stories. We encourage academic papers, panels, roundtables, and non-traditional presentations (e.g., storytelling, interactive sessions, creative) from all disciplines, and we welcome submissions that look at the dynamics of climate change and social change on a case-by-case, island-by-island, or regional basis. All disciplinary perspectives are welcomed, but they must engage with notions of the lived experience of islandness. We are also keen to engage with presentations that adopt a more comparative framework or methodology in their critical analysis.


Abstracts of around 150 words each are invited on any of the above themes. These should be accompanied by the full name and institutional affiliation of the author/s.


Sustaining, knowing, and ‘living’ the Blue? Coastal communities as places to belong across generations
Deadline for submission of abstracts: December 8th, 2022

Department of Education and Lifelong Learning, NTNU, and NTNU Oceans welcome abstracts for an interdisciplinary conference in Trondheim, Norway on June 15-16th , 2023 

This interdisciplinary conference is related to the research project; Valuing the past, sustaining the future. Education, local knowledge and identities across generations in coastal communities (2016-2023), funded by Research Council Norway, and conducted by a team of interdisciplinary researchers from five countries. The project is part of one of NTNU’s thematic research priorities; Oceans. The overall aim of the conference, similar to the research project, is to create a dialogue between different disciplines and research traditions related to the marine environment with the wish to provide a critical, renewed and deeper knowledge base about the shifting and dynamic interplay between education (non-formal and formal), society and working life, bridging past-present-future. Children and young people are a particular focus of investigation, but we believe a broad scope and a contextual and relational perspective to be fruitful as a source of knowledge to inform and critically renew policies and practices.

This conference welcomes contributions from different disciplines and fields such as (but not limited to) history, sociology, geography, anthropology, marine sciences, comparative literature, rural studies, gender studies, in addition to education and childhood and youth studies.


Call for papers Special section for Small States and Territories

The Epoch of Queen Elizabeth II: Continuity and Rupture in Small States and Territories

It is the aim of this special section in the SST 6(2), November 2023 issue of Small States & Territories to provide a critical and wide-ranging assessment of the influence, both directly and indirectly, on small states and territories of the reign of Queen Elizabeth II.

It is an opportune time to evaluate how small states and territories embraced, rejected and appropriated the role of the monarchy in different contexts over time. It is also a moment for reflection on the Queen’s legacy and what the future might hold for the Commonwealth, the 14 countries that retain the Monarch as the head of state and the position of the UK Overseas Territories, which remain strongly linked to the constitutional powers and symbolism of the Crown.

The special issue welcomes contributions from across disciplines (history, political science; international relations; anthropology sociology; geography; constitutional/legal studies; public administration; visual cultures etc.). Contributions can consider historical or contemporary is-sues across the Commonwealth, within particular small countries and territories, or cross-cut-ting themes such as memorialisation, constitutional change, social policy, human rights, na-ture of ‘Britishness’, and pageantry. The only required common denominator is the role and influence (or lack thereof) of Queen Elizabeth II and the Monarchy more generally.

We would like to offer a cutting-edge, multi-disciplinary and global assessment of these issues, at a time when the future of the Commonwealth and the Monarchy, within the prism of small states and territories, is at a critical juncture.

Manuscripts will be accepted up to the end of July 2023 and should be sent to: All submissions need to be according to the journal style (

If you have any questions prior to submission please contact one of the co-editors: Sarah Gray: Peter Clegg:

Ongoing calls:
While you're here, why not check out the Creative Well-being Initiative's Artist Survey or send it to an artist you know?

This survey aims to gauge the prevalence of mental health concerns among artists and arts workers based in Epekwitk (Prince Edward Island). As a result of this survey we will hopefully begin to determine what should be implemented to best support the mental health of artists. The survey will be anonymous, but the findings (including text based answers) may be shared publicly. The results of this survey will directly impact the draft strategic plan being created through The Creative Well-Being Initiative.

Join our interdisciplinary Master of Arts in Island Studies (MAIS) program! You can now apply for September 2023! 

Application deadline (2023 Fall term): July 1st, 2023.

This program accepts students from all disciplinary backgrounds; all that we ask is that you have a passion for islands!

In addition to the long-running Thesis program, there are three course/work-study stream options: Island Tourism, Sustainable Island Communities, and International Relations & Island Public Policy.
Learn More
Do you have an island studies publication, upcoming event, new research, or other updates to share?
We would be delighted to share it with our global island studies network!
Submit details here
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