MAIS Program Well-Represented at Two International Conferences 

Charlottetown, PEI (July 11, 2022)—

The MAIS program was well-represented at two recent international Island Studies conferences in Croatia and Shetland. 

ISISA UPEI contingent

Attending and presenting their research at the 18th International Small Islands Studies Association (ISISA) “Islands of the World: Nature and Culture” conference hosted by the University of Zadar, Croatia, June 13-17, were MAIS students Jenna Gaudet, Helena Ryan, and Richard Wedge. MAIS sessional instructor and PhD student Andrew Halliday (University of New Brunswick) also presented, as did Prince Edward Island scholars Laurie Brinklow, Godfrey Baldacchino, and Anna Baldacchino.
Special congratulations go to Jenna and Andrew on receiving student scholarships from ISISA and the conference organizers! 

ISISA Jenna and Helena

To give you a glimpse into MAIS research, here are the presentation titles:
– Jenna Gaudet: “Islands of Control: Gated Communities and the Future of Island Life” 
– Helena M. Ryan: “Female Island Youth in Parts Per Million (ppm) Volumetric Voices: Sustainable Development through the Islandness of Lucy Maud Montgomery, Autumn Peltier, and Greta Thunberg “
– Richard Wedge: “Neoliberalism and Health in Tonga”
– Andrew Halliday: “The Island Within: Prince Edward Island’s Involvement in the Atlantic Bubble” 
– Godfrey Baldacchino: “Doing Island Studies: A Methodology Primer Takes Shape” 
– Anna Baldacchino: “A Walk Down Memory Lane: A Review of ISISA Newsletters (2012-2021)” 
– Laurie Brinklow: “The Disappearing Island: Exploring Islandness and the Language of Art in the Anthropocene”
– Laurie Brinklow with Brady Reid (Memorial University): “Generosity Through Crisis: Comparing Opportunities of Multi-Jurisdictional Socio-Economic Recovery through Philanthropy in Atlantic Canada” 

In addition to a full academic program with 4 keynote speakers, 93 papers presented, and 120 participants from around the globe, the organizing committee led by University of Zadar’s Aniça Cuka also put together three stunning field trips to islands off the coast of Zadar, including Uglijan, Pag, and Dugi otok, giving us a small glimpse of life in this beautiful Croatian archipelago. 

The Book of Abstracts can be found here: https://www.isisa.org/userfiles/ISISA_2022_Book_of_Abstracts_FIN.pdf 

Two weeks later, MAIS students joined Laurie at the Small Island Cultures Research Initiative (SICRI) Island Studies International Conference (ISIC 16) entitled “Creativity, Ingenuity, and Practice” hosted by the Centre for Island Creativity at the University of the Highlands and Islands in Shetland. They were Andrew MacPherson, Fiona Steele, and Maggie J. Whitten Henry (presenting remotely). Wonderful congratulations go to Fiona for being recognized for the Best Student Presentation at the end of the conference! 

Fiona receiving her award

You can hear Fiona discuss the conference, and her podcast “the hidden island” on CBC’s Mainstreet.

Presentations at the ISIC 16 included:
– Andrew MacPherson: “Reimagining Canada as an Archipelago: Two Islands as Depicted in Recent Speculative Fiction”
Fiona Steele: “Creative Approaches to Sustainable Island Tourism” 
– Maggie J. Whitten Henry: “Recursive islandness in creative practice: Entangled negotiations with abundance, loss, tradition, and time” 
– Laurie Brinklow: “My island’s the house I sleep in at night: Nissopoesis and island-making” 

Conference organizers were Andrew Jennings from UHI (who is also a member of the Institute of Island Studies Advisory Committee), along with co-convenors Evangelia Papoutsaki and Meng Qu from SICRI. 

Plans for the conference field trip to the northernmost islands of Yell and Unst were thwarted when the ferry to Yell broke down, but in true island fashion, conference organizers came up with an equally fabulous program: a bus tour of Shetland narrated by Andrew and his colleague, UHI professor and archaeologist Simon Clarke. Conference-goers did get to experience a short ferry ride later to another island in the archipelago: to Bressay, across Lerwick’s harbour, for an evening at the local arts and community centre. 

On behalf of the students, Laurie would like to thank the Office of Development and Alumni Engagement, the UPEI Student Union, and ISISA and the University of Zadar for funding assistance that allowed them to participate in these invaluable experiences.  

Fiona, Laurie, and Andrew

Dr. Laurie Brinklow named President of ISISA

Charlottetown, PEI (July 11, 2022)—

At the International Small Islands Studies Association (ISISA) General Meeting in Zadar, Croatia, June 17, Laurie Brinklow was acclaimed President of ISISA. She succeeds Godfrey Baldacchino who had served in the role for eight years. 

Serving on the new Executive for the next four years are Sarah Nimführ (Vice President), Anna Baldacchino (Secretary), Andrew Jennings (Treasurer), and Ordinary Members Rosemarie Azzopardi, Aniça Cuka, Ayano Ginoza, and Adam Grydehøj. Tomislav Oroz joins as a Co-Opted Non-Voting Member. 

Thanks go to the outgoing executive committee, in particular President Godfrey Baldacchino and Vice President Beate Ratter, for their hard work and contributions over the years!  

The Executive looks forward to planning the next ISISA conference in 2024, the location for which is yet to be confirmed.  

For further information, or to become a member of this pre-eminent Island Studies organization, please check out isisa.org or follow us on Facebook


Want to hear more about what went on at ISISA 2022? Check out our update!

Media contact:
Anna MacDonald
Communications Officer
Marketing and Communications, University of Prince Edward Island
amacdonald@upei.ca | (902)-566-0949


NEWS: “Who’s your mother? Bringing Women’s work to the fore on Prince Edward Island” – Panel presentations at the 5th International St. Magnus Conference, April 2021

April 12, 2021—

The Institute for Northern Studies at the University of Highland and Islands will be hosting the 5th International St. Magnus Conference from April 14–16, 2021. Originally scheduled to take place in Shetland in 2020, this three-day conference will be taking place virtually via Webex. This year’s theme is ‘Island Histories and Herstories’ and explores the contribution of women and men in island communities from before the Viking age to the present, revealing the experiences of island life through research and storytelling.

As part of this conference, there will be a PEI-focused panel session on Wednesday, April 14th, from 11:30am-1:00pm ADT (UTC-3), featuring Dr. Laurie Brinklow and MAIS student Marlene Chapman.

PANEL DETAILS:

Who’s your mother? Bringing women’s work to the fore on Prince Edward Island

Ever since European immigrants chose to settle in Canada nearly four centuries ago, the economy of Atlantic Canada has been rooted in traditional ways of making a living: agriculture and the fishery. Prince Edward Island is no different, with its ‘islandness’ intensifying the social structure associated with each industry, resulting in conservative yet – seemingly paradoxically – cosmopolitan societies. Women have played fundamental roles in the types of work associated with these industries, often sharing responsibility or taking the lead out of necessity.
This panel takes its title from the common expression used when Prince Edward Islanders meet someone new – “Who’s your father?” – used to emplace you in the patrilineal “tribe” that is Prince Edward Island. We turn it on its head, documenting how PEI has often been at the forefront of what we now call ‘feminism’ in the fishery and the arts – and attributing much of this empowerment to the intensity that comes with island living. 

Presentation ABSTRACTS:

Raising the glass ceiling in the Prince Edward Island fisheries
Marlene Chapman

Lobster fisher and Master of Arts in Island Studies student, UPEI

In Prince Edward Island, interest in women’s roles in the fishing industry is rising like the tide. Already in 2019, an island fishing community instituted an annual award to recognise women, and the provincial government launched a survey to figure out how to reduce barriers in the industry for females. This paper looks at this changing role of women and wonders aloud what this might mean for sustainability of the island’s fisheries.

A photo of Laurie Brinklow smiling

Women making art on Prince Edward Island
Dr. Laurie Brinklow

Institute of Island Studies, UPEI

Recently the Confederation Centre of the Arts in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, hosted an exhibition entitled ‘Who’s your mother? Women Artists of P.E.I., 1964 to the Present’, showcasing PEI women’s art and correcting a gap in the Centre’s acquisitions to better reflect today’s ‘artistic scene that by now arguably produces more female than male artists’. This paper asks the question: how has being ‘islanded’ affected women’s acceptance in a profession that was dominated by males on what has generally been considered a conservative island?


For more information about the 5th International St. Magnus Conference, the full program, and to register to attend, visit uhi.ac.uk/en/research-enterprise/cultural/institute-for-northern-studies/research/conferences/stmagnus2021


NEWS: UPEI co-hosts international conference with the University of Aruba

UPEI’s UNESCO Chair in Island Studies and Sustainability and the University of Aruba co-host the 1st International Island States/Island Territories Conference:
Sharing Stories of Island Life, Governance and Global Engagement

April 2, 2019 —

The 1st International Conference on Small Island States and Subnational Island Jurisdictions was hosted March 26-29, 2019 by the University of Aruba, in collaboration with the Centre of Excellence for the Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing States (COE) and the UNESCO Chair in Island Studies and Sustainability, which is shared between the University of Prince Edward Island (UPEI) in Canada and the University of Malta.

The theme of the conference was “Island States/Island Territories: Sharing Stories of Island Life, Governance and Global Engagement.” The conference appealed to scholars, policy-makers, NGO representatives, students and members of the general public who networked and shared knowledge on Sustainable Development on islands. In total, the conference had approximately 100 participants. Several geographic regions were represented, including the Caribbean, Pacific and Africa, Indian Ocean, Mediterranean and South China Sea (AIMS), Australasia, and the North Atlantic.

There were 18 local conference presenters, with a multi-disciplinary participation, which included local lecturers from three University of Aruba faculties: the Faculty for Accounting, Finance and Marketing of the University of Aruba (FEF), the Faculty of Arts and Science (FAS), and the Faculty of Hospitality & Tourism Management Studies (FHTMS).

The conference also awarded 6 international Student Travel Scholarships and 20 local University of Aruba students joined the sessions as part of their curriculum. Scholarship winners included Owen Jennings, a graduate of the UPEI MAIS program and now a PhD student at the University of Hawai’i; and Patrick Lévêque, a current student in the UPEI MAIS program.

The international participants enjoyed an “Aruban Welcome” with a conference dinner at the Old Cunucu House and a field trip to Aruba’s San Nicolas district, where they also visited the Industrial Museum to get to know about Aruba’s island history.

Scholarship award-winners with Conference chair Jim Randall: (l-r) Joris Sylvie, Université des Antilles; Zhannah Voukitchevitch, University of Ottawa; Kristin De Kroon, University of Waterloo; Azell Francis, Georgia Institute of Technology; Owen Jennings, University of Hawai’i; and Patrick Lévêque, University of Prince Edward Island.

Additionally, the hosts were very proud to have had two female Heads of Government as keynote speakers addressing integrity in governance and the resilience of islands; both the Honourable Evelyna C. Wever-Croes, Prime Minister of Aruba & Minister of General Affairs, Integrity, Energy, Innovation, & Government Organization, as well as the Honourable Leona Romeo-Marlin, Prime Minister of Sint Maarten & Minister of General Affairs, graced us with their insights.

Screen capture from Aruba Today

The community enjoyed a free public lecture by Dr. Godfrey Baldacchino organized alongside the conference on the evening of March 28, whereby the University was honoured to receive the attendance of the Governor of Aruba.

The conference’s international planning committee is chaired by UNESCO co-chair, Dr. Jim Randall of the University of Prince Edward Island. Local co-hosts included Deborah Alexander from the Centre for Lifelong Learning at University of Aruba, Glenn Thodé, Rector of the University of Aruba, Patrick Arens, Business Director of the University of Aruba, and Arno Boersma and Francielle Laclé from the COE. The planning committee comprises scholars from several academic institutions including the University of the West Indies, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, University of Malta, Leiden University, and the University of the West of England.

Jim Randall noted that this was a wonderful opportunity to showcase the intellectual capacity and hospitality of the University of Aruba and the island in general. “Several first-time international delegates said to me that this will not be the last time they plan on visiting Aruba,” he said.

The Planning Committee is grateful for the contributions made by the sponsors to this event. These include The Dutch Ministry of Interior Affairs and Kingdom Relations, Guardian Group Fatum, the University of the West of England, Aruba Tourism Authority, the Think to Do Institute, Smit&Dorlas, and Aruba Aloe.

For more information, visit the official Conference website.

IN THE NEWS