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Events

October 20, 2023

Reykjavík, Iceland

 

Arctic Circle Assembly 

Session Urban Youth and Resilience of Arctic Cities.

In October, the COVID-GEA Project team participated in the Arctic Circle Assembly, the largest annual international gathering on Arctic affairs, with over 2,000 participants from more than 60 countries. It is attended by heads of states and governments, ministers, members of parliaments, officials, experts, scientists, entrepreneurs, business leaders, Indigenous representatives, environmentalists, students, activists, and others from the growing international community of partners and participants interested in the future of the Arctic.

 

The COVID-GEA co-organized a Session Urban Youth and Resilience of Arctic Cities that brings together Arctic mayors, Arctic Indigenous leaders, and expert community to discuss current and future prospects of the Arctic urban youth:

  • Rebecca Alty, Mayor, City of Yellowknife, Canada 

  • Carina Sammeli, Mayor, City of Luleå, Sweden

  • Ásthildur Sturludóttir, Mayor, City of Akureyri, Iceland

  • Dickie Moto, Mayor, The Northwest Arctic Borough, Alaska

  • Daniel Smirat, Chairman, Municipal Council of Luleå, Sweden

  • Zakary Myers, CEO & Founder, Golo-Sah Consulting; Indigenous leader, Young Arctic Leaders in Research and Policy (YALReP) project, Canada.

 

Chairs/Experts:

  • Prof. Andrey Petrov, Professor; Director, ARCTICenter, University of Northern Iowa, USA

  • Dr. Marya Rozanova-Smith, Research Professor, The George Washington University, USA.

 

We would like to thank our distinguished panelists and partners for their excellent contribution that made the Session a great success, and we hope to participate in the upcoming Arctic Circle Assemblies of the highest significance for the entire Circumpolar region and beyond.

Session organizers:

  • Understanding the Gendered Impacts of COVID-19 in the Arctic (COVID-GEA) Project, The George Washington University

  • ARCTICenter, University of Northern Iowa

  • Arctic-COAST Project, University of Northern Iowa

  • Measuring Urban Sustainability in Transition (MUST) Project, The George Washington University.

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October 22, 2023

Reykjavík, Iceland

 

Arctic Circle Assembly 

 

Session Gender and Disaggregated Data in the Arctic Region

Our deep gratitude to the Session organizers for the invite to join a discussion on gender equality issues and disaggregated data in the Arctic regions and our special thanks to all distinguished panelists for an excellent conversation.

Session organizers:

  • Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Iceland

  • Crown Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs, Canada

  • Icelandic Arctic Cooperation Network (IACN)

  • Directorate of Equality, Iceland

  • Arctic Athabaskan Council.

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Photos courtesy of the Arctic Circle Assembly, Friðrik Þórsson, and Laura Goodfield.

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COVID-GEA team– Marya Rozanova-Smith and Laura Goodfield– at the Arctic Circle Assembly.

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Exhibition in Húsavík at the Húsavík Academic Center.

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Exhibition in Akureyri at the Municipal Library.

Our Exhibition was on a tour in Iceland!

Audio-Visual Exhibition

Arctic Women’s Voices: Standing Strong in the Face of COVID-19

October 19-22, 2023

Arctic Circle Assembly 

Reykjavík, Iceland

            &

October 25, 2023

Þekkingarnet Þingeyinga/Húsavík Academic Center

Hafnarstétt 1-3, Húsavík, Iceland

The central foyer, 1nd floor

            &

October 26, 2023

The Municipal Library of Akureyri

Brekkugata 17, Akureyri, Iceland

The foyer, 1nd floor

 

The legacy of the COVID-19 pandemic is still present in many Arctic communities. This exhibition presents women from northern Iceland and Alaska. Their stories introduce powerful narratives of grief and resilience, reflect on feelings of isolation and moments of despair, as well as project boundless optimism and self-empowerment. Presented narratives allow us to better understand the COVID-19 pandemic's complex gendered impacts on the Arctic communities and life in the Arctic as a whole.

 

This exhibition presents women from Alaska and northern Iceland.

Among them – small business owners, scientists, healthcare providers, farmers, social workers, educators, government officials, and emerging youth community leaders. Inspired by their lives, we invited these women to share their stories to allow us to better understand the COVID-19 pandemic's complex gendered impacts on the Arctic communities and life in the Arctic as a whole.

Exhibition curator:

Dr. Marya Rozanova-Smith (The George Washington University).

Poster designers:

Laura Goodfield, Sophie Rosenthal, Polina Saburova, and Marya Rozanova-Smith.

Promo video/audio producer:

Emily Frisan.

Organizers:

  • Icelandic Arctic Cooperation Network

  • The Project "Understanding the Gendered Impacts of COVID-19 in the Arctic (COVID-GEA)", www.arcticcovidgender.org (The George Washington University)

  • Þekkingarnet Þingeyinga/Húsavík Academic Center.

 

Host in Akureyri:

The Municipal Library of Akureyri.

More in Icelandic here.

COVID-GEA meets with communities in Iceland!
 

October 25, 2023

Þekkingarnet Þingeyinga/Húsavík Academic Center

Hafnarstétt 1-3, Húsavík, Iceland

 

Standing Strong in Face of COVID-19:

Gender Equality and Women’s Experiences in Húsavík


This event presented the preliminary findings from the interviews conducted in Húsavík and neighboring communities to solicit community feedback and open discussion on current challenges in achieving gender equality in Iceland. Themes included considerations on how the pandemic contributed to gender inequalities in relationship to social realities, local economies, and personal life strategies.

Opening Remarks:

Lilja Berglind Rognvaldsdottir, Director of the Þekkingarnet Þingeyinga (Húsavík Academic Center)   

 

Project preliminary findings presentation:

Dr. Marya Rozanova-Smith, PI, COVID-GEA Project.

Organizers:

  • Icelandic Arctic Cooperation Network

  • The Project "Understanding the Gendered Impacts of COVID-19 in the Arctic (COVID-GEA)"

  • Þekkingarnet Þingeyinga/Húsavík Academic Center.

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Presentation in Húsavík at the Húsavík Academic Center.

COVID-GEA meets with communities in Iceland!

October 26, 2023

The Municipal Library of Akureyri

Brekkugata 17, Akureyri, Iceland

 

Standing Strong in Face of COVID-19:

Gender Equality and Women’s Experiences in Akureyri

 

This event presented the preliminary findings from the interviews conducted in Akureyri and neighboring communities to solicit community feedback and open discussion on current challenges in achieving gender equality in Iceland.

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a devastating effect on Arctic communities; however, these consequences differ across genders. Most importantly, the COVID-19 pandemic has likely deepened gender inequality for years to come.

 

Opening Remarks:

Anna Lilja Björnsdóttir, Special Advisor at the Directorate of Equality of Iceland.

Presentation:

Dr. Marya Rozanova-Smith, PI, COVID-GEA Project, The George Washington University.

Organizers:

  • Icelandic Arctic Cooperation Network

  • The Project "Understanding the Gendered Impacts of COVID-19 in the Arctic (COVID-GEA)."

Host in Akureyri:

The Municipal Library of Akureyri.

More in Icelandic here.

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Presentation in Akureyri at the Municipal Library.

April–May, 2023

Washington, D.C.

The George Washington University

2023 GW Research Showcase

 

The COVID-GEA Research Assistants presented their findings at:

 

The COVID-GEA team showcased two projects:

  • Gendered Policy Responses to the Covid-19 Pandemic: The Case of Alaska by Anissa S. Ozbek

  • Understanding the Gendered Policy Response to the COVID-19 Pandemic through the Prism of a Wellness Concept: Case of Alaska by Riya Bhushan, Alicia Glassman, Laura F. Goodfield, Anissa S. Ozbek, Sophie M. Rosenthal.

 

Anissa Ozbek’s poster presentation on Gendered Policy Responses to the COVID-19 Pandemic: The Case of Alaska" won the 2nd place among 200+ projects.

 

Congratulations to Anissa, great job!

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March 27, 2023

Denver, Colorado

2023 AAG Annual Meeting

Session Indigenous Cultural Resilience in Urban Environments.

Description:

In a rapidly changing world, urbanization is one of the defining signs of ongoing demographic, social, cultural, and economic transformations. The urbanization trend among Indigenous Peoples is likely to accelerate in the future due to climate and social changes. Given the speed and intensity with which Indigenous urbanization is taking place, it is crucial to shed light on the Indigenous cultural resilience of Indigenous urbanites and emerging urban Indigenous identities. Unveiling, understanding, and valuing Indigenous urban livelihoods is an important task with respect to research and policy making, but most crucially, in terms of individual and collective self-determination of the Indigenous Peoples.

 

During our presentation on Urbanization and Cultural Resilience of Indigenous Urbanites: Lessons from the Arctic, we discussed gendered aspects on Indigenous urbanization using the case of Nenets Region.

 

Chairs:

  • Dr. Stanislav Ksenofontov, ARCTICenter, University of Northern Iowa

  • Dr. Marya Rozanova-Smith, The George Washington University.

Panelists:

  • Stanislav Saas Ksenofontov, ARCTICenter, University of Northern Iowa, Marya Rozanova- Smith, George Washington University, Andrey N. Petrov, ARCTICenter, University of Northern Iowa: Urbanization and Cultural Resilience of Indigenous Urbanites: Lessons from the Arctic..

  • Leila Wilmers, Cornell University: Nation building and the diverse city: Negotiating the Russian state’s discourse of multiethnic nationhood

  • Sarah Ferer Schenkein, U.S. Geological Survey: Importance of Identity-based Professional Organizations in the Experiences of Underrepresented Earth Observation Scientists.

Session organizers:

  • Measuring Urban Sustainability in Transition (MUST) Project, The George Washington University.

  • COVID-GEA Project (Understanding the Gendered Impacts of COVID-19 in the Arctic), The George Washington University

  • ARCTICenter, University of Northern Iowa.

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February 17–24, 2023

Vienna, Austria

 

Audio-Visual Exhibition

Arctic Women’s Voices: Standing Strong in the Face of COVID-19

University of Vienna

Universitätsring 1
1010 Vienna

The central foyer, 2nd floor, next door to the famous "Großer Festsaal."

 

This exhibition presents women from Alaska and northern Iceland whom we met in 2022. Among them were small business owners, scientists, healthcare providers, farmers, social workers, educators, government officials, and emerging youth community leaders. Inspired by their lives, we invited these women to share their stories to allow us to better understand the COVID-19 pandemic's complex gendered impacts on the Arctic communities and life in the Arctic as a whole.

 

This exhibition is organized by the COVID-GEA project in cooperation with the UGEEA project, and is a part of the Arctic Science Summit Week-2023.

Exhibition curator:

Marya Rozanova-Smith (The George Washington University).

Poster designers:

Laura Goodfield, Sophie Rosenthal, Polina Saburova, and Marya Rozanova-Smith.

Promo video/audio producer:

Emily Frisan.

 

Acknowledgements:

First and foremost, we express our sincere appreciation to all exhibition contributors who shared their stories with us. Our deep gratitude goes to Polina Saburova (Indiana University Bloomington) for video editing and guidance on exhibition design and Emily Frisan (GWU) for producing the promo video and audio. Special thanks go to the COVID-GEA project Iceland partners Embla Eir Oddsdóttir and Sveinbjörg Smáradóttir (IACN), Alaska partner Charlene Apok, Andrey Petrov (UNI), and the COVID-GEA team members Riya Bhushan, Laura Goodfield, and Sophie Rosenthal (GWU).

We are very grateful to Gerlis Fugmann (IASC) and all the ASSW-2023 organizers, especially Olga Povoroznuk and Khaled Hakami (University of Vienna), for their valuable support. We also acknowledge funding from the U.S. National Science Foundation (project entitled "Understanding Gendered Impacts of COVID-19 in the Arctic (COVID-GEA)," PLR #2137410) and overall support of the Department of Geography (GWU).

February 17–24, 2023

Vienna, Austria

 

Arctic Science Summit Week-2023

Session Gender Equality for Sustainable Arctic Communities Amid and Beyond the COVID-19 Pandemic.

Session Description:

Empowering all genders to effectively participate in modern society is one of the most important advances towards sustainable community development, encompassing equal representation in the labor market and political office (Sustainable Development Goal 5). Recent studies on gender equality demonstrate that inequality persists across the Arctic countries and spheres of engagement. Additionally, gender equality has been negatively affected by the COVID-19 pandemic that has had a devastating effect on different communities across the Arctic communities. However, the consequences of the pandemic differ from region to region and across genders. Most importantly, it is likely that the COVID-19 pandemic has deepened gender inequality for years to come. This session aims to share and advance knowledge on the COVID-19 pandemic gender impacts, gendered policy responses, intersectionalities, and the implications of the COVID-19 pandemic on all genders, particularly women, in different societal spheres and communities. The session will include a presentation on the COVID-19 Gender Response Tracker for the Arctic regions.

Session Convener:

Hjalti Ómar Ágústsson, The Directorate of Equality, Iceland.

Panelists:

  • Markus Meckl, University of Akureyri: Gender-based health inequalities among migrant women during COVID-19 and public health responses in the Nordic countries.

  • Andrea Hjálmsdóttir, University of Akureyri; Valgerður S. Bjarnadóttir, University of Iceland: “I reduced my working hours to meet the children’s needs.” Gendered realities during Covid-19 in Iceland.

  • Marya Rozanova-Smith, The George Washington University; Andrey N. Petrov, University of Northern Iowa: COVID-19 Impacts on Women in the Arctic: The Case of Iceland

  • Anissa Ozbek, The George Washington University: Gendered Policy Responses to the COVID-19 Pandemic: The Case of Alaska

  • Marya Rozanova-Smith, The George Washington University: Arctic Community Narratives: Presentation of the Exhibition “Arctic Women Voices: Standing Strong in the Face of COVID-19.”

Organizers of the Session:

COVID-GEA Project, GWU; ARCTICenter, UNI; Icelandic Arctic Cooperation Network (IACN); COVITA Project.

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January 30, 2023

Tromsø, Norway

Fram Center

Hjalmar Johansens gate 14, 9007

 

Audio-visual Exhibition

Arctic Women’s Voices: Standing Strong in the Face of COVID-19

The opening of our Audio-Visual Exhibition Arctic Women’s Voices: Standing Strong in the Face of COVID-19.

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused devastation across the globe, but it has had an immense impact on the Arctic, in particular, due to a number of factors such as the climate, remoteness of the region, and historical underrepresentation of Indigenous communities. However, the impacts and consequences differ across regions and genders. Women, specifically, were disproportionately vulnerable to the effects of the pandemic, such as elevated unemployment, increased unpaid work, domestic violence, and higher health risks.

 

This exhibition presents women from Alaska and northern Iceland whom we met in 2022. Among them were small business owners, scientists, healthcare providers, farmers, social workers, educators, government officials, and emerging youth community leaders. Inspired by their lives, we invited these women to share their stories to allow us to better understand the COVID-19 pandemic's complex gendered impacts on the Arctic communities and life in the Arctic as a whole.

 

Their stories introduce powerful narratives of grief and resilience, reflect on feelings of isolation and moments of despair, as well as project boundless optimism and self-empowerment.

 

Bringing Arctic women's voices to light will help us reflect on lessons learned and broaden our perspective about how dramatic events such as COVID-19 impact Arctic communities and women specifically. Women's voices from the Arctic must be heard to become a part of the broader history of COVID-19.

This exhibition is organized by the COVID-GEA project in cooperation with UGEEA Project, and is a part of the Arctic Frontiers 2023: Moving North.

Exhibition curators: 

Polina Saburova (Indiana University Bloomington) and

Marya Rozanova-Smith (The George Washington University).

 

Poster designers:

Laura Goodfield, Sophie Rosenthal, Polina Saburova, and Marya Rozanova-Smith.

Video editing:

Polina Saburova.

Acknowledgements:

First and foremost, we express our deep appreciation to all exhibition contributors who shared their stories with us. Our deep gratitude goes to Polina Saburova for video editing and guidance on exhibition design. Special thanks go to the COVID-GEA project Iceland partners Embla Eir Oddsdóttir and Sveinbjörg Smáradóttir (IACN) and Alaska partner Charlene Apok, Andrey Petrov (UNI), as well as the COVID-GEA team members Riya Bhushan, Sophie Rosenthal, and Laura Goodfield (GWU).

We are grateful to all the Arctic Frontiers–2023 organizers, especially Jenny Turton, for her valuable support. We also acknowledge funding from the U.S. National Science Foundation (project entitled "Understanding Gendered Impacts of COVID-19 in the Arctic (COVID-GEA)," PLR #2137410) and The Research Council of Norway (Project “URban Sustainability in Action: Multi-disciplinary Approach through Jointly Organized Research schools,” award #322317).

October 13-16, 2022 

Reykjavík, Iceland

 

Arctic Circle Assembly 

 

Session Arctic Urban Communities: Building Resilience Amid and Beyond the COVID-19 Pandemic.

The COVID-GEA Project team participated in the Arctic Circle Assembly, the largest annual international gathering on Arctic affairs, with over 2,000 participants from more than 60 countries. It is attended by heads of states and governments, ministers, members of parliaments, officials, experts, scientists, entrepreneurs, business leaders, Indigenous representatives, environmentalists, students, activists, and others from the growing international community of partners and participants interested in the future of the Arctic.

 

The COVID-GEA co-organized a Session Arctic Urban Communities: Building Resilience Amid and Beyond the COVID-19 Pandemic that brought together four Arctic mayors, Arctic Indigenous leaders, including Indigenous youth, and expert community representatives to discuss current and future prospects of the urban communities’ resilience in the Arctic amid and beyond the COVID-19 pandemic:

Policymakers:

  • Rebecca Alty, Mayor, City of Yellowknife, Canada 

  • Carina Sammeli, Mayor, City of Luleå, Sweden

  • Ásthildur Sturludóttir, Mayor, City of Akureyri, Iceland

  • Bryce J. Ward, Mayor, Fairbanks North Star Borough, USA.

 

Indigenous leaders: 

  • Dr. Dalee Sambo Dorough, ICC International Chair (2018–2022), Senior Scholar and Special Adviser on Arctic Indigenous Peoples, University of Alaska Anchorage, USA 

  • Varvara Korkina Willams, Arctic Innovation Fellow, Institute for Arctic Studies, Dartmouth College, USA.

 

Chairs/Experts:

  • Prof. Andrey Petrov, Professor; Director, ARCTICenter, University of Northern Iowa, USA: Presentation of the COVID-19 Vulnerability and Resilience Indices in the Arctic

  • Dr. Marya Rozanova-Smith, Research Professor, The George Washington University, USA: Presentation of the Arctic COVID-19 Gender Response Tracker. 

 

In response to the COVID-19-related changes, the panelists shared their visions of good COVID-19 mitigation and reopening practices and lessons learned, existing and future plans and strategies, including socioeconomic measures and gender responsive policies, to improve their communities' life in the North. We have received highly positive feedback from our attendees, who were thankful for the opportunity to learn first-hand about resilience practices and challenges in the Arctic cities.

We would like to thank our distinguished panelists and partners for their excellent contribution that made the Session a great success, and we hope to participate in the upcoming Arctic Circle Assemblies of the highest significance for the entire Circumpolar region and beyond.

Session organizers:

  • Understanding the Gendered Impacts of COVID-19 in the Arctic (COVID-GEA) Project, The George Washington University

  • ARCTICenter, University of Northern Iowa

  • COVITA Project, University of Northern Iowa

  • Arctic-COAST Project, University of Northern Iowa

  • Measuring Urban Sustainability in Transition (MUST) Project, The George Washington University

  • Icelandic Arctic Cooperation Network (IACN).

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