The Arctic is an island region, with examples being the Aleutians, Greenland, Ellesmere Island, Svalbard, and Zemlya Georga. Island cities include the capitals of territories and countries such as Nunavut and Iceland as well as settlements along Alaska’s and Norway’s shores such as Shishmaref and Tromsø. The Arctic Ocean is arguably a seasonally ever-shifting amalgamation of ice islands.
Within these island complexities, societies develop and thrive, with the rapidity of social and environmental changes leading to both islanding and de-islanding of the peoples and places–often by the same processes. The resurgence of Arctic identities and the forging of islander links around the region reinforces both Arcticness and islandness. Meanwhile, assumptions of improved regional access and the apparent desire from some to create a scramble for resources and opportunities connects with people outside the Arctic.
This panel explores these manifold bridges among and beyond Arctic islands, indicating understandings of directions sought and the realism of achieving the goals. Would increased Arctic transport connections improve options and/or exponentially increase disaster risk? Given the virtualness of this summit, how are virtual bridges built and wrecked? What politics and policies are needed to ensure that Arctic island bridges are created, maintained, and shut down through leadership of the peoples living in the locations?
Founder and Managing Director of Polar Research and Policy Initiative
Leader of the Orkney Islands Council
Her additional affiliations include the World Association for Emergency and Disaster Medicine (WADEM), UK Polar Network (UKPN), YANA (Yale Alumni Nonprofit Alliance), and she is the founder of ADECA (Arctic Disaster Early Career Association).
Before shifting to disaster governance, Patrizia spent over 15 years conducting academic research and working in the fields of business consulting and international security, notably with Booz Allen Hamilton, IBM, the Institute for National Security Studies (INSS), the German-Israeli Chamber of Commerce, the Israeli Ministry of Health, World Bank, and many start-ups, focusing on strategic consulting, business development and change management.
Patrizia Isabelle Duda
PhD scholar at University College London (UCL)
Youth Activist & Social Entrepreneur, Comoros Islands
Martin Mohr Olsen
University of the Faroe Islands
University Engagement Manager at Highlands and Islands Enterprise
Headquartered in the UK and with a presence across North America, Europe and the Asia-Pacific, PRPI operates principally in the international arena and is committed to supporting sustainable regional development through multi-stakeholder, multi-sectoral and multi-national dialogue and cooperation. Every year, PRPI convenes 50-60 high-level policy dialogues around the world that bring together policymakers, business executives, civil society heads and thought leaders to exchange ideas, make connections and identify avenues for collaboration on topics of shared concern or interest. In addition, it also advances greater understanding about its focus regions through analysis and commentary it publishes on its digital platform, The Polar Connection, and various national and international media outlets, as well as through policy reports, briefings, edited volumes and written/oral evidence to Parliamentary inquiries.
How society sees risk, how to link understanding of the causative mechanics to statistical approaches, and how to increase resilience and reduce the risk of disasters are common themes cutting across research in natural, environmental, health and technological hazards. The IRDR, with its new academic staff, many jointly appointed with key UCL departments, its rapidly growing trans-disciplinary PhD research centre, integrative masters teaching, programme of public events and partnerships with humanitarian, financial, research and civil protection organisations, seeks to bring together this diverse expertise at UCL. We aim to maximise the impact and value of UCL activities and to increase and enhance cross-disciplinary collaboration and cooperation globally.