Catch up on what our projects have been doing this past month with our February 2023 update! Each month we consolidate the most relevant presentations and meeting slides into a new video.
Our @1860 Winnipeg Arts project was first announced in Feb 2022 during a CPAC press conference commemorating Canada’s first-ever National Kindness Week. This year, our team hosted a small, pop-up exhibition as part of this winter’s programming. As well, we co-facilitated several amazing hybrid video/in-person national events with youth from across Canada.
National Kindness Week 2023
Canada’s Second Annual National Kindness Week was celebrated from February 12-19, 2023, with the aim of encouraging Canadians to engage in acts of kindness, volunteerism, and charitable giving. The week-long event brought together individuals and organizations from coast to coast to coast to share resources, information, and tools to foster more acts of kindness.
Organized by Global Dignity Canada, this year’s celebration had a special focus on being kind to the planet, with Global Dignity Canada launching the theme of taking action for a healthy, clean, and green Canada. From small actions like recycling to nation-wide efforts, Canadians were encouraged to play their part in making the country a more environmentally friendly place.
To commemorate the special day, a press conference was held on February 15, 2023, moderated by Giovanna Mingarelli, Chair of Global Dignity Canada, and Olivia Bechthold, Executive Director of Global Dignity Canada. Representatives from all three major political parties, including Michael Barrett, Emmanuella Lambropoulos, and Blake Desjarlais, also participated in the event.
The press conference also featured Jamie Bell, a founding member of the @1860 Winnipeg Arts Program and member of the Our People Our Climate collective. Bell, who is a long-time volunteer with Global Dignity Canada, served as its Winnipeg and Manitoba Chair. Rev. Dr. Paul Luftenegger, an interfaith minister and acclaimed singer/songwriter of conscious music to inspire global love, dignity, and kindness, also took part in the special event.
Canada’s Kindness Week was introduced as a private members bill by Senator Jim Munson, Bill S-223, which received Royal Assent on June 3, 2021, to become law in Canada, designating the third week in February as National Kindness Week.
Overall, Canada’s Second Annual National Kindness Week served as a reminder of the power of kindness to bring people together and create positive change. It was an opportunity for Canadians to celebrate the spirit of kindness, volunteerism, and charitable giving, and to promote a more compassionate and inclusive society.
Our project’s work with the ArcticNet-supported Inclusion in Northern Research Project was presented during a workshop held on February 18 for Arctic Science Summit Week in Vienna, Austria.
Arctic Science Summit Week 2023
Canadian Indigenous youth-led community projects were recently featured at the Arctic Science Summit Week (ASSW), highlighting the critical role that young people play in promoting environmental sustainability in the Arctic region.
Organized by Dr. Samantha Buzzard at Cardiff University in the UK, this international workshop showcased several Canadian projects, including the ArcticNet-supported Inclusion in Northern Research Project, the @1860 Winnipeg Arts program, and the Our People Our Climate Project with the Minneapolis College of Art and Design.
The ASSW, organized annually by the International Arctic Science Committee (IASC), is an important gathering for scientific organizations involved in Arctic research. Since its inception in 1999, it has evolved into the most significant annual meeting for Arctic research organizations. With support from the ArcticNet Network Centre of Excellence and the IASC, Indigenous youth from Canada showcased their work in northern research, telling stories that highlighted diverse and varied journeys.
Race and Systemic Bias in Arctic Sciences
The issue of systemic bias in Arctic Science is a serious one, with far-reaching implications for the region and the world as a whole. Indigenous and underrepresented minorities continue to be excluded and marginalized in Arctic research, which poses a significant challenge to our understanding of this important region. The Race and Systemic Bias in Arctic Sciences Crosscutting Workshop, held during this year’s Arctic Science Summit Week from Vienna, Austria, aims to address this challenge head-on. Through a series of talks and breakout discussions, the workshop brought together researchers, experts, and Indigenous participants to explore ways to eliminate systemic biases and promote inclusivity in Arctic research.
In its 2021 proposal, this workshop received positive feedback from various IASC working groups, which recognized its importance. The IASC Atmosphere Working Group, for example, expressed interest in being fully engaged in the development of the workshop, while the Cryosphere Working Group emphasized the need to fund the attendance of early career researchers, Indigenous participants, and experts. The Marine Working Group described the proposal as “very good and unique,” while the Social and Human Working Group highlighted the project’s ability to leave a long-term legacy. Similarly, the Terrestrial Working Group described the topic of race and systemic bias in Arctic sciences as “timely and clearly important.”
With 17 strong applications received by the International Arctic Science Committee in 2021, the selection process for funding was rigorous. However, the Race and Systemic Bias in Arctic Sciences Crosscutting Workshop stood out for its clear focus and potential impact. By bringing together researchers and experts from different IASC working groups, the workshop showed the potential to promote international collaboration and dialogue. Ultimately, the goal of the workshop was to ensure that Arctic research becomes more inclusive, and that the perspectives and experiences of all stakeholders are taken into account.
Session was originally scheduled for Norway in 2022
In March 2022, a follow-up workshop in Tromsø, Norway, was rescheduled to 2023 due to the impacts of Covid-19 pandemic restrictions and international logistics. The joint Canada-UK proposal for a Race and Systemic Bias in Arctic Sciences Crosscutting Workshop for Arctic Science Summit Week 2022 was awarded a total of 12,381 Euros from the IASC Atmosphere, Cryosphere, Marine, Social & Human, and Terrestrial Working Groups. The rescheduled workshop will take place on February 18, 2023, as part of Arctic Science Summit Week 2023 in Vienna, Austria, with support from Cardiff University, the International Arctic Science Committee, and the Austrian Polar Research Institute.
The work and voices of Indigenous youth-led community projects in Canada is critical in promoting inclusive research across the Arctic regions. Their projects serve as an inspiration for other young people worldwide, demonstrating how youth-led initiatives can make a significant impact in promoting social and environmental change.
We look forward to hearing more about these important discussions at future ASSW events.
Save the date for ICASS XI in Bodø, Norway!
ICASS XI will take place May 29-June 2, 2024 in Bodø, Norway, hosted by Nord University and Nordland Research Institute.
The event will take place together with the UArctic Congress and the High North Dialogue 2024. The themes of the Congress will follow those of Norway’s Arctic Council chairmanship program in partnership with the Norwegian Ministry for Foregin Affairs.
ICASS XI will include a meeting of the IASSA General Assembly, high-level plenary and parallel sessions, as well as networking and social events. Bringing these events together in Bodø – a 2024 European Cultural Capital – will be a showcase of Arctic cooperation, and provide excellent opportunities to meet and exchange without extra travel.
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