Island Studies News | February 2023

Island Studies News | February 2023

A note from the editor:
Hello and welcome to the February issue of Island Studies News.

Congratulations! If you live in the northern hemisphere, you have officially survived the ten darkest weeks of the year! Spring may not be close yet, but our days will at least be getting brighter.

Continuing the good news, I'm happy to let you all know that the deadline for Turning the Tide Conference abstract submissions has been extended to the end of February! Please share our Call for Papers with anyone that you think may be interested in presenting in Aruba this October.

There's plenty to look forward to this month. In our Upcoming Island-centric Events section, you'll find an upcoming public talk on building an energy-positive Island and the next installment of the Island Feminisms speaker series happening this month. Plus, you can find a sneak peek of our next Island Lecture being planned for March! 

Looking for some edutainment for Black History Month? Start with episode 4 of the hidden island podcast: "PEI’s Black history, present and future" found in our Podcasts Recordings section.

If you celebrate Valentine's Day (which I believe can be enjoyed both partnered and unpartnered), I hope you have a lovely one! Or you can pass the chocolate on to me and go have fun at the Canada Games instead! Or do both? "Both" is always a good answer.

Enjoy that extended break, my fellow MAIS students.
Until next time, take care
      - Megan Lane
Bright Spot: Scotland's Energy Strategy to Shape Next 25 Years of Energy Production.

There is a clear imperative to accelerate the clean energy transition and reduce Scotland’s dependence on oil and gas, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has said ahead of the publication of a new strategy for the energy sector.

The draft Energy Strategy, being published for consultation on Tuesday 10 January, will set out the Scottish Government’s policies on domestic production of energy, alongside a plan to reduce demand and build a resilient and secure future net zero energy system.

Latest from Island Studies at UPEI

Coming up next month!

Island Lecture Series: Dr. Irené Novaczek  March 21st, 7pm Faculty Lounge SDU Main Building, UPEI
Join us March 21st for an Island Lecture from marine ecologist Dr. Irené Novaczek on the Ecosystem Restoration Project at Basin Head. Basin Head was designated as a "Marine Protected Area" under the Oceans Act in 2005, to conserve and protect a unique strain of Irish moss (Chondrus crispus) which is thought to exist only within the confines of Basin Head.

The talk will focus on adaptive management of the Marine Protected Area to ensure that the unique giant form of Irish moss at Basin Head is able to survive in the coastal lagoon environment which is challenged by impacts of local agriculture, invasive European green crabs and ongoing climate changes.

Stay tuned for details!

Meet Irené
Dr. Irené Novaczek has lived and worked on islands for most of her life, in Canada, Europe, New Zealand, the Caribbean, Southeast Asia, and the South Pacific. A marine scientist, she has researched and worked extensively in coastal resources management, often focusing on seaweed, and community development on small islands.

Island Studies Press

Mi'kmaw leader John Joe Sark remembered as trailblazer who fought for truth and justice

"The island lost an incredible advocate and human being on January 8, 2023: Keptin John Joe Sark. Island Studies Press is grateful to have had the chance to work with him on his latest book, Epekwitk: Stories and Histories of the Mi'kmaq Nation. Every time he came into the office, he would say, 'You're looking good.' He was an incredible man, articulate, kind, and intelligent, and he had a great sense of humour. We will miss you, John Joe." 

IIS Executive Committee

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

Dr. Carolyn Peach Brown
Originally from Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia, Carolyn is an Associate Professor and Director of Environmental Studies at the University of Prince Edward Island. Prior to doing her PhD in Natural Resource Policy and Management at Cornell University, she worked for over 10 years in Central Africa at the grassroots level in community development. Carolyn’s research focuses on environmental governance for management of commons resources, and how such strategies can contribute to the goals of sustainable resource management and improved livelihoods. In particular, she explores the role played by communities and civil society groups in multi-level governance, in the context of changing policy and a changing climate.
To learn more about the governance of the IIS, visit

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

Summer Job Opportunity

The MacPhail Homestead will soon be advertising for staff – a cook and students. The cook position is 40 hours/week for most of the summer and will continue part-time for the Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners. The summer students will be hired for 8 or 12 weeks based on funding availability. Job descriptions are available. If you know of someone who might be interested in the positions, please contact Site Manager, Gail Steele at 902-388-2193 or

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 News 

Internationally Renowned Sustainable Energy Expert Delivering Public Talk

February 6th

Speaker, author, and award-winning innovator Søren Hermansen will deliver a public talk on building an energy-positive Island.
“Hermansen won the Goteborg award - known as the environmental version of the Nobel prize - for his work with sustainable energy and he inspired Samsø Island to collectively build a community energy project,” said Environment, Energy and Climate Action Minister Steven Myers, who will join Hermansen for the talk. “Since 2020, we have been building on lessons learned from sustainable energy models in Samsø and other jurisdictions to inform our nation-leading Net Zero goals.”

Samsø is a carbon-neutral island in Denmark. It produces more energy than it uses. The people of Samsø have reduced their heating costs by 40 per cent and created local energy businesses that don’t rely on imported oil.

Hermansen is visiting Prince Edward Island and will host a day-time event for energy transition professionals and stakeholders. There will also be a public event on February 6, 2023, from 6 – 8 p.m. at Florence Simmons Performance Hall. This includes a catered reception that will feature discussion on some innovative energy project ideas.

Tickets are free but those interested in attending are asked to register at: Energy Positive Island: Samsø to PEI. Hermansen’s talk will also be streamed live on the provincial government’s YouTube channel.

“From my island Samsø in Denmark, we are looking for network partners who are willing to commit to the global challenge of climate change with innovative local efforts. I see PEI as a frontrunner island in the Canadian effort to achieve carbon neutrality,” said Søren Hermansen. “The energy transition can meet local evolving energy demand while directly benefiting community members and stakeholders in a number of ways. There is much more to it than climate change. PEI will enter a global family of climate communities, and together we can accelerate the change.”

To learn more about the province’s Net Zero goals and financial incentives for Islanders to reduce their carbon footprint, visit: PEI Net Zero.

Canada's New 700km Island Path

A Canadian's quest to design a pilgrimage-inspired path around Prince Edward Island is now the Island Walk, a 700km walking and cycling route.

Shoreline Protection Order Put in Place

New coastal development in Prince Edward Island is prohibited until a coastal zone policy is developed. The environmental protection order on shoreline development prohibits new development in the buffer zone and associated erosion control activities in the watercourse and/or wetland boundary.
“I am committed to finding a way forward to protect our coast while maintaining the natural look and feel of the shores we grew up with. Our new coastal development policy will be rooted in the best available science and local expertise, so our province is prepared to face the long-term impacts of climate change.”- Environment, Energy and Climate Action Minister Steven Myers

As of December 1, 2022, permits related to new development in the buffer zone were stopped. Since the environmental protection order was signed, some permitting has begun based on the factors outlined in the order.

Macphail Homestead is Closed for the Season

The Macphail Homestead is now closed for the season and will reopen in June. However, we are planning to offer our popular annual Mother’s Day lobster dinner. Gail Steele, will be available part-time to assist committees with their work and to work on special projects. Gail’s telephone number is 902-388-2193.

Kings Playhouse February Events

Bake Your Own Bread with Peter Llewellyn
Feb 11 @ 10:00 am – 1:30 pm

Valentine’s Cards & Gift Boxes with Amie Smith
Feb 12 @ 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm

Scott Parsons presents : The Story of PEI’s Black Athletes through Stories and Song (IllumiNATION)
Feb 25 @ 7:30 pm – 9:30 pm
poster with text reading: "Kings Playhouse Winter Tales Storytelling festival. March 23-26, 2023" Between the text is a drawing of a group of people seen through a snowy window. The group of people are of varied ethnicities, genders, and ages; all crowded around a table listening to one man animatedly telling a story.

News From Other Islands 

Dursey Island Cable Car: lights out for another Irish Island?

| Scottish Rural Network

Mālama: Restoring Maui’s Olowalu Valley

| Hawaii Magazine

Students Help Track Climate Impact on Marine Species

| Earth 911

Western Irish islands making waves on screen and in science

| Silicon Republic

Microgrids in Puerto Rico Keep Rural Communities Connected

Environmental and Energy Study Institute

Upcoming Island-centric Events 

Island Feminisms 2023 Speaker Series

“A feminist political ecology of agri-environmental activism in shifting island rurality”
with Laura Williams
23 February, 1:00 PM (Hawaii-Aleutian Standard Time)

“Female & Afro-Diasporic Resilience: lntersectional Crossroads in a Post-Colonial Context”
with Eva Silot Bravo
23 March, 1:00 PM (Hawaii-Aleutian Standard Time)
Register here!

“Afrofeminismos: activismo político y sanación en la lucha por la equidad racial en Puerto Rico” (Presentation in Spanish with English Interpreter)
with Bárbara Abadía-Rexach
21 April, 1:00 PM (Hawaii-Aleutian Standard Time)
Register here!


Scottish Island Futures 2050 and Beyond

Scottish Island Futures - 2050 and Beyond content

Scottish Island Futures - 2050 and Beyond

Four Workshops in 2023 Exploring the Future of the Scottish Islands

With the Islands (Scotland) Act 2018 and the current £100 million Islands Growth Deal, Scottish society is becoming more aware of the importance of the Scottish islands. However, what future awaits them? Four themed workshops will research potential futures, exploring their demographic challenges, their large-scale renewable power generation projects, space centres, rich cultural heritages, and creative industries. The workshops will involve expert island researchers from Scotland, Ireland, and members of the UArctic Thematic Network Arctic and Northern Islands Research from the Faroe Islands, Iceland, Canada and Finland. The experts will engage with islanders during the workshops, conference and on the Institute for Northern Studies UHI website.

The experts will discuss the topics together in the mornings and in the afternoons the sessions will be streamed.

The following core questions will be addressed:

  1. How will vibrant, successful island populations be maintained into the future?
  2. What level of autonomy will best serve the island communities going forward?
  3. How can the islanders best engage with the changing environment?
  4. How can islands become sustainable, and how can large-scale developments be absorbed by small island communities?
  5. What role will island cultures and languages have in future scenarios?

The four workshops will be as follows:

  • The Future of Core Periphery Relationships 3 February 2023

This workshop will be held in Shetland and will focus on island governance. Participants will explore relationships between islands and their metropoles i.e. Edinburgh and London. Are there better models of governance? Is island autonomy a goal to be strived for

  • Speaking of the Future – the Role of Language, Culture and Heritage 3 March 2023

This workshop will be held in the Outer Hebrides and will examine the role of the indigenous culture and languages in supporting vibrant communities. Is there a future for Gaelic and the Northern Isles dialects?

  • Future Sustainable Communities – exploring the scope and scale of island development 21 April 2023

This workshop will be held in Orkney and will examine the optimum level of development for islands. Ought they to be industrialised, or should the focus be on small scale development, such as support for the creative industries?

  • Networking for the Future – islands doing it for themselves 12 May 2023

This online workshop will focus on inter-island discourse, and the creation of island focussed networks. Island communities can establish links with each other, without involving the centre. What will be the future for islands if this trend continues?

The workshops are intended to have a direct impact on Scottish island communities, bolstering islander agency, supporting islanders to make informed decisions and to maximise their potential, while minimising the effects of future threats, and helping them to chart a course to a sustainable, vibrant future. They are also intended to have an impact on policy makers and informing local and National Government policies.

Links to the workshops will be released soon.

Global Britain, contested spaces, and the UK Overseas Territories

Online, March 9th 09:30 – March 10th 2023, 15:30 GMT

Since the decision of the UK to leave the EU, the UK Government has established and promoted the idea of ‘Global Britain’. Perhaps the clearest, but still largely unrecognised, manifestations of Global Britain are the UK’s Overseas Territories. They are scattered across the globe, and include thousands of small islands, vast areas of ocean, but also, in Antarctica, land six times the size of the UK. The territories provide the UK with significant global reach. However, the UK’s sovereignty over several of the territories is contested. This hybrid workshop brings together these two strands to consider how the UKOTs can support and enhance Global Britain, but also how the UK can best mitigate international tensions to effectively secure its global brand. The workshop takes place over two days and involves several keynote presentations and a range of plenary and smaller group discussions considering issues such as political and constitutional relations, social policy, security, the economy, and the environment. Chatham House rule will apply.


Recent Webinar & Event Recordings

Towards Energy Sovereignty on Labrador’s Remote Island of Ponds | Island Lecture Series
Recorded January 24th

Newfoundland and Labrador is a global leader in the development of renewable energy. However, the electricity-generation mix differs dramatically in remote and Indigenous communities throughout the province, which remain almost exclusively reliant on diesel fuel, resulting in numerous energy inequities. While sustainable energies are often promoted for these isolated villages, emerging research demonstrates detrimental socio-economic and livelihood implications which emerge when development is led by outsiders or corporate interests. The presentation will focus on an 8+ year community-based research partnership between Dr. Nick Mercer and the NunatuKavut Inuit community of Black Tickle, located on the subarctic tundra Island of Ponds, in southern Labrador. The research focuses on identifying and addressing community needs, integrating local knowledge and sustainability values, and mobilizing community-led initiatives to enhance island energy resilience.

Watch now...

What's Energy Democracy? Meet Summerside Electric!
| Sierra Club Canada - Atlantic Canada Chapter

Imagine if every time you turned on the lights or charged your phone, you were plugging into local clean renewable energy? And what if the revenue generated from heating and cooling your home helped to better your community? What if you actually knew where your electricity comes from and had some say in the matter? While this may sound like the stuff of fiction, it’s not. On June 22, Sierra Club Atlantic hosted a webinar with special guest Greg Gaudet, the Director of Municipal Service for Summerside Electric—PEI’s only municipally owned and operated power utility. In 2009, Summerside Electric built its first wind farm, and attained the highest percentage of wind integration of any utility in North America. What’s next for Summerside? A smart grid, more electric charging stations, a solar garden, and converting gas vehicles to electric! Check out our recording of the webinar to explore how energy democracy empowers ordinary citizens to participate in the energy decisions that affect their daily lives—while also creating stronger, more resilient communities.

Watch now...

Recent Podcast Recordings

the hidden island
Season 3, Episode 4: PEI’s Black history, present and future

In episode four, Tamara Steele, Executive Director with the Black Cultural Society of PEI, is hosting a panel with Aaron Sardinha and Debbie Langston. Listen to them chat about Black history on the Island, as well as an education initiative Aaron and Debbie are spearheading: The Black Women’s History Project.

Features: Tamara Steele, Aaron Sardinha, and Debbie Langston.  

Listen now

Island Conversations
Su Ping - Island Conversations

In this podcast, we'll be hearing from Su Ping, who is professor at the School of Foreign Languages at South China University of Technology in the city of Guangzhou. She received her PhD from University of Hong Kong's School of English in 2014. Professor Su’s current research interests include senses of islandness, Caribbean literature, and the anthropology of migrant and transnational communities. Ping, welcome to SICRI’s Island Conversations podcast series.

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!

The Role of Academia in the Sustainable Development of Islands

Stacey Alvarez de la Campa | Island Innovation
January 27, 2023

The term “academia” can mean different things to different people. For the academic, it refers to the traditions and paradigms that shape their world, focus, and topics of interaction, as well as the knowledge that they seek to explore and build on. For the layperson, academia can often represent a maze of words and puzzling bureaucracy, and can be removed from the realities of everyday life and problem solving.

This article will explore how academia can in fact play a central role in island development and the attainment of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, and have increasing relevance in island communities. It is this principle that is at the heart of the creation of Island Innovation’s most recent program, the Academic Council.


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 III: Health and Life

Small States and Territories

Vol. 5, No. 2, November 2022

Anthropological Forum,
Volume 32, Issue 2 (2022)

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 February 28th, 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.



History Speaks: Silenced Narratives & Social Change History Across the Disciplines Conference 2023

The Dalhousie Graduate History Society is delighted to present the 24th annual History Across the Disciplines Conference. It will be held in-person on March 24th-25th, 2023 in Halifax, Nova Scotia at Dalhousie University, located in Mi’kma’ki, the ancestral and unceded territory of the Mi’kmaq. This year’s theme is “History Speaks: Silenced Narratives & Social Change.”

The conference aims to promote interdisciplinary discussion using History as a bridge. We welcome all scholarship that seeks to rethink, challenge, and complicate dominant narratives by exploring and giving space to marginalized voices. Please feel free to interpret the theme as you wish.

We invite graduate students from any disciplines to submit a 300-word abstract and a short personal biography to the conference committee no later than 11:59pm AST on Friday, February 11th, 2023. We also encourage a brief outline of how your work pertains to the theme. Successful applicants will be notified within two weeks. The best paper presented at this conference, as decided by a panel of graduate students and faculty members, will win the John Flint Prize (a $250 honorarium). To be considered for this prize, applicants must provide the conference committee with their final paper by Monday, February 28th, 2023. Presentations may be up to twenty minutes in length and will be held in English.

Following the keynote speaker Friday evening and the panel discussion on Saturday, presenters are invited to experience local Halifax culture with us in an informal setting. Details to follow.

For more information, please feel free to contact the conference committee, at We look forward to reviewing your abstracts!
Deadline: 30 April 2023

The Research Centre for Literary Tourism (TULE), based at the University for Foreigners of Perugia (Italy), welcomes proposals for the upcoming E-Dictionary of Literary Tourism.

This dictionary will aggregate texts on concepts, authors, places, products and experiences associated with literary touring and will be available online for all who wish to learn about this expanding tourism niche.

The list below shows the already assigned dictionary entries. Therefore, please, suggest other relevant entries (e.g., case studies of literary festivals, literary places, literary hotels and literary cities, among other concepts of tourism and literature studies).

Literary tourism; literary tourist; literary place; literary geography; literary tourism product; literary museums; museums of national literature; writers’ home museums; literary museums in Switzerland; museum at Palazzo Alfieri in Asti; authenticity & literary tourism literary; trails/itineraries; literary cafés; literary parks; literary hotels; literary heritage & tourism; literary tourism and remembrance; literary tourism motivations; literary tourism & sustainability; dark literary tourism; literary tourism as media-induced tourism; literary tourism in Naples; literary tourism in Capri; literary tourism in Provence; travel writing; tourist literature; literary author; UNESCO Cities of Literature; the spatial turn; literary tours; the Grand Tour; the romantic movement & literary tourism; Marcel Proust’s literary places; literature, pilgrimage and religious tourism; Edmondo de Amicis; Giacomo Leopardi; Vittorio Alfieri.

Submission guidelines: Language: English
Please submit a 100-word-topic proposal, in English, to:
Deadline: 30 April 2023
After the proposal acceptance, TULE will invite the submission of the complete dictionary entry (1500 words) by 31 July 2023 (the guidelines will be later provided).

View the PDF...

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:

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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