University of Washington


March 2013 Report

Dear Friends,
Vince and I are delighted to announce the new Canada Fulbright Chair in Arctic Studies at the University of Washington – a joint initiative supported by Global Affairs; Social Sciences, College of Arts and Sciences; the Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies; and, College of the Environment. The Chair will infuse the campus with current research on issues facing this critical emerging region of the world. Please also find below news regarding spring courses on the Arctic, alumni success stories, and other Center involvements. Finally, congratulations to Tina Storer, the Educational and Curriculum Specialist for our National Resource Center, for her successful $20,000 grant to the Library of Congress for a educator workshop, “Archives on the Arctic: Connecting Global Issues to Primary Resources” to be held in Denver this June. - Nadine

Canadian Studies Center, March Report, 2013
New Canada Fulbright Chair in Arctic Studies at U.W.

The Center's Arctic Initiative will work with colleagues across campus to further develop partnerships with Inuit organizations in the Arctic such as the Makivik Corporation in Arctic Québec (Nunavik). Charlotte Guard, Arctic Security Task Force student (far right) with Joë Lance, Executive Assistant to the President of the Makivik Corporation, and Kitty Gordon, Communications Officer, Makivik Corporation, Québec City (January 2013).

The new Canada Fulbright Chair in Arctic Studies is part of the Center’s Arctic Initiative as well as part of a larger initiative on the polar regions being developed by the College of Arts and Sciences, College of the Environment, and Applied Physics Laboratory.

The Fulbright Arctic Chair will enable the UW to capitalize on its existing strengths to become a world leader in integrated multidisciplinary research, scholarship and teaching on the science, policy, and cultures of the polar regions. UW already has an unparalleled research and teaching program in the science of the cryosphere, and a vibrant and successful program in Arctic social sciences and policy.

The Center is working with the Quaternary Research Center, Program on Climate Change, Program on the Environment, and the Applied Physics Laboratory, to create a new academic program in Arctic studies, a scholars program for graduate students, postdoctoral and visiting scholars, and a strategy that ensures the flow of knowledge between the University and stakeholder communities in the polar regions including Arctic indigenous organizations and peoples. These partnerships establish meaningful linkages between natural and social scientists in an effort to address some of the most challenging environmental, economic and social issues of our time.

A Fulbright Chair in Arctic Studies will bring scholars, practitioners and indigenous leaders from Canada to the U.W. The Chair will teach a required course for the new Arctic Minor (now in development), provide the annual Fulbright Lecture focused on emerging issues and developments in the Arctic region, and assist the two colleges in building collaborative relations with Arctic scholars, scientists, and indigenous organizations.

Return to Newsletter Front Page

Canadian Studies Center, March Report, 2013
Joël Plouffe Gives Talk at Western Washington University, "The Arctic Dimension to Canada’s Foreign Policy"
by Joël Plouffe, Visiting Québec Professor, University of Washington

WWU photo with Joël (left), Don Alper (center) and Chris Sands (right)

Joël’s talk looked at how Canada’s foreign policy for the circumpolar world started to emerge in the 1950s as part of bilateral Canadian and American defense relations in the North American Arctic. While both countries continued to engage bilaterally in that region throughout the 1960s till the 1980s, mainly (but not exclusively) because of the long-lasting legal dispute over the Northwest Passage, the Northern/circumpolar dimension to Canada’s foreign policy as we know it today was born in the early 1990s. Joël’s presentation also looked at how Canada was very active on circumpolar issues throughout the post-cold war period, being a major actor in the creation of the Arctic Council (Canada was the first country to Chair the Arctic Council in 1996 and will be starting its second mandate as Chair of the Arctic Council in May 2013). Today, Joël explained, because of climate change and emerging security issues, Canada is trying desperately to regain a role of influence in the circumpolar north but has yet to fine tune its approach to this changing region and also the changing role of the Arctic Council as the main forum for dialogue in the Arctic and with the rest of the world.

While visiting the Center for Canadian/American Studies at WWU, Joël had various meetings on Québec/US relations and studies with Dr. Don Alper, Director of Canadian American Studies at WWU, and Dr. Christopher Sands, 2013 Ross Distinguished Professor at WWU. In 2010, Joël was Québec Visiting Professor at WWU, teaching Québec Politics and Contemporary Issues. His two appointments in Washington State, at WWU in 2010 and, now, at UW for the Task Force on Arctic Security in 2013 were made possible through government funded grants from the Government of Québec, Ministère des relations internationals du Québec. He is grateful for their valuable support in funding research on Québec/US/Canada/North America related issues, and for allowing Québec scholars to visit and work with American colleagues around the United States.

Joël Plouffe from Université du Québec à Montréal is the 2013 Visiting Québec Professor at the JSIS, UW, co-teaching with Nadine Fabbi from the Canadian Studies Center a Task Force on Arctic Security. He is grateful to be working with Nadine at UW, and the outstanding JSIS IR major students part of the Arctic Task Force.

Return to Newsletter Front Page

Canadian Studies Center, March Report, 2013
Economics of Ice: Globalization and the Polar Regions
by Kristy Leissle, PhD, Lecturer, University of Washington 

I am very pleased to be offering the first humanities and social science based course on the polar regions, Economics of Ice: Globalization and the Polar Regions, at UW Bothell in spring quarter. My scholarly interest in the polar regions arose after what I thought would be a purely recreational expedition trip to the Antarctic more than a year ago. Upon my return, I began to consider the geopolitical parallels between the Antarctic and my primary geographical area of study, sub-Saharan Africa. As I expanded my polar interests to include studies of the Arctic as well, I realized that, much like sub-Saharan Africa, the polar regions have been major and crucial locations of resource extraction, helping to fuel the global economy both historically and today, and at the same time under-discussed and under-represented in both popular media and social scientific academic studies. While the melting of the Arctic sea ice especially has opened new windows onto polar discussion, there still remains, I believe, a significant gap between the scale of political, economic, and historical contributions the polar regions have made to global flows of ideas, people, and goods, and the frequency with which they are discussed in popular discourse and studies of globalization within the academy.

My seminar will introduce the importance of the Arctic and Antarctic regions to global economic, political, and environmental processes, especially climate change, through both social scientific analyses and -- just as importantly -- analyses of representations in text and film, to explore the ways we think about and imagine the poles. My students will explore human interactions with the poles, regarding indigenous peoples, the age of European exploration, contemporary cultures (especially food), sovereignty, resource extraction, climate change, and contemporary tourism. We will look especially forward to an April visit from Antarctic veteran and author Jason Anthony, whose recent book Hoosh: Roast Penguin, Scurvy Day, and Other Stories of Antarctic Cuisine (2012), is required reading for the course, along with Endurance: Shackleton's Incredible Voyage by Alfred Lansing (2007), and The Future History of the Arctic by Charles Emmerson (2010). Throughout the course, we will interrogate academic and popular media depictions of the poles, both textual (especially explorer accounts) and filmic. My goal is to emphasize the fragility and importance of the polar regions to global environmental health, resource flows, and historical knowledge of our planet. Students will give presentations on their research papers, which may cover any issue discussed in the course for either pole, on June 3 and June 5 on the Bothell campus. If you are interested in attending their presentations, please do contact me - we'd love to have you join us for what will undoubtedly be enlightening and lively presentations.

Kristy Leissle is Lecturer at the University of Washington Bothell and Seattle. Her research areas are, broadly, feminist international political economy, global trade, and sub-Saharan Africa, especially that continent's political-agricultural and colonial histories. Specifically, her work has been on the cocoa-chocolate trade between West Africa, Europe, and North America.

Download Course Syllabus

Return to Newsletter Front Page

Canadian Studies Center, March Report, 2013
Arctic Archeology offered Spring Quarter 2013
by Ben Fitzhugh, professor, University of Washington

Inuit settlement. Photo credit: 

Archy 377: Arctic Archaeology will be offered this coming Spring quarter (2013). The course examines the archaeology of the arctic and subarctic from the late Pleistocene to the 19th century AD. Arctic and subarctic environments represent some of the most extreme environments ever occupied by humans, and the history of human adaptation to these environments is a testimonial to human creativity and its limits. This course compares the archaeological evidence from northern Eurasia, Beringia, North America and Greenland to illustrate variability in human adaptation to geographic, ecological, and climatic differences and to explore questions of cultural change and history in these different areas.

Themes include human-environmental interactions in arctic and subarctic environments; Ice Age and Holocene settlement of the circumpolar subarctic and arctic; development of and change in terrestrial and maritime adaptations through the last 10,000 years; the dramatic upheaval and reorganization of indigenous culture following contact with Eurasian explorers and settlers in the last millennium. In particular, we will look at the archaeology of Norse and Inuit settlement Greenland in the early second millennium AD. We will study the expansion of the whaling and fur trades and their consequences for indigenous communities in arctic and subarctic Canada and Alaska. A closing unit will examine the colonial legacy of archaeological research in the north and the role of archaeology in contemporary cultural heritage work. The course is targeted to upper level undergraduate students, but is appropriate for engaged and enthusiastic first and second year undergraduates willing to keep up with the work and to graduate students (talk to the instructor for graduate student registration options). Readings will be drawn from a variety of sources and will include summary articles, peer-reviewed primary journal articles, and two text books.

Course Information: Archy 377, SLN 10420: TTh 11:30-1:50 MEB 246. Instructor: Ben Fitzhugh (

Ben Fitzhugh is an Associate Professor in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Washington. His interests revolve around the study of technological, demographic, economic, social and political (i.e. cultural) change of maritime hunter-gatherers in the North Pacific using archaeological data and methods and in interdisciplinary collaborations with ecologists, geologists, climatologists, oceanographers, and ethnographers. These interests have led him to investigate variables affecting island colonization, maritime foraging strategies, changes in subsistence economy, changes in mobility and sedentism, technological development and intensification, ‘origins’ of institutionalized social inequality and stratification, intensification of warfare and factors that create vulnerability and resilience for coastal communities and the environments they rely on in the past and present.

Return to Newsletter Front Page 

Canadian Studies Center, March Report, 2013
Task Force 2013 Trip to Québec City & Ottawa!
by Charlotte Dubiel, Kevin Shaw, and Binh Vong, Task Force 2013 Students

Task Force students visit the Nunavut Sivuniksavut - a school for the Inuit of Nunavut in Ottawa.

For the twelve student members of the JSIS Arctic Task Force, the past week flew by in a whirlwind of security studies. We spent every day attending conferences and dialoguing with individuals at the forefront of Arctic politics and research. The program kicked off with a morning tour of historic Québec City, where we trekked through ice, snow and freezing temperatures while marveling at the breathtaking, centuries-old architecture. In true Arctic fashion, we took an ice-breaking ferry across the St. Lawrence and marveled as the boat navigated along the frozen river. In following days, we heard presentations from the Québec government, research institutions, and aboriginal organizations. Each speaker gave us a unique perspective on issues surrounding Arctic security.

On the day we departed lovely, francophone Québec, freezing rain painted the ground with a deadly sheen of ice. Treading carefully, we journeyed to the ROC (Rest of Canada) by train, where we were very fortunate to stay in a magnificent bed and breakfast. Our hosts in Ottawa greeted us with incredible hospitality, showcased by a delicious, made-from-scratch apple pie upon arrival. While not eating copious amounts of pie and soup, we attended meetings in the American Embassy, the Canadian Department of Defense, the WWF, Canada’s number one think tank the CBC, Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, Inuit Circumpolar Council and, most importantly, met with our peers in the Nunavut Sivuniksavut School. In Ottawa we were challenged to broaden our investigation regarding sovereignty and security in the Arctic space towards developing recommendations for a comprehensive model of community resilience.

Returning to Seattle, we are eager to continue our research and begin drafting a policy report, which will be presented to Tony Penikett, former Premier of the Yukon Territory. Despite being exhausted from a week of traveling and days spent in transit, we are excited to base our report in new findings and a variety of Arctic perspectives.

The 2013 Task Force on Arctic Policy is a joint program between the Canadian Studies and International Studies centers in the Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies at the University of Washington (UW). This year's Task Force on the Arctic has received support from the Government of Québec and will focus on the northern policies of the Government of Québec and Inuit of Nunavik in northern Québec. The vision of the program is to bring UW students together with their Inuit colleagues in Canada to address effective ways to govern the international Arctic region.

Return to Newsletter Front Page

Canadian Studies Center, March Report, 2013
Alumna Continuing Experience from the 2011 Task Force on Arctic Governance

Jennifer Grosman did not foresee that the highlight of her studies would continue after her graduation but found that Canadian Studies is just too irresistible! As a general international studies major, Jennifer chose to join the Task Force on Arctic Governance with little knowledge of the area but a desire to understand more on the emerging importance of Arctic sovereignty. Task Force was a taxing but incredibly valuable experience as she engaged with the fascinating issues of Arctic governance, honed her research skills, and bonded with the other students and Task Force Advisors Nadine Fabbi and Vince Galucci.

Jennifer is delighted to further her understanding of Canadian-U.S. Relations in her new position as a Program Coordinator for the Pacific NorthWest Economic Region. The organization, based in Seattle, WA, is a public/private non-profit created by statute in 1991 by the northwestern U.S. states and Western Canadian provinces and territories. PNWER is the only statutory cross-border, bi-partisan forum for legislators, government agencies, nonprofits, and business leaders to come together to develop regional solutions to global challenges. After interning with the organization with fellow Task Force participant Victoria Choe, Jennifer assumed the responsibilities of coordinating the organization’s biannual conferences. This July, Jennifer is very excited to travel to Anchorage, Alaska for the 600-person gathering of regional legislators and business leaders. Arctic Issues will be incorporated throughout the week-long event with the economic, environmental, and energy interconnections between the Arctic and greater region influencing agenda development. Jennifer is also supporting PNWER’s U.S. – Canadian Arctic Roundtable to be held at the Capitol on March 7th. Ms. Julia Gourley, U.S. State Department, who was the Task Force Evaluator will be participating in the event; yet another Task Force connection!

Though, Jennifer is excited to be working in her field, she is envious of the new Arctic-themed classes offered this spring! She would like to invite everyone to the Summit in Anchorage. Visit for more information on the Arctic Caucus and other programs.

The Task Force on Arctic Governance is a joint program between the Canadian and Global Studies Centers in the Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies at the University of Washington and part of the Canadian Studies Center and Makivik Corporation, Nunavik, Canada, Educational Initiative. The 2011 Ottawa Research Trip was sponsored by the Canadian and Global Studies Title VI grants, International Education Programs Service, U.S. Department of Education; Government of Canada; Hellmann Fund for Innovation and Excellence; Maxwell M. and Julia Fisher Endowment; International Studies Program Discretionary Fund; Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies; Wilburforce Foundation, Seattle; and Makivik Corporation.

Return to Newsletter Front Page

Canadian Studies Center, March Report, 2013
Former FLAS Joins International Programs as University of Kansas

Cody Case, FLAS student 2007-2008, is the new Global Awareness Program coordinator for the Office of International Programsat the University of Kansas. He received his bachelor's and master's degrees in ethnomusicology, the anthropology of music, from the University of Washington and conducted various research projects in Tunisia, France, Canada and Ghana. Case is a strong advocate for community-engaged learning and is eager to promote global awareness among KU students on both local and international levels.

Funding for FLAS Fellowships is provided by a Center allocation from International and Foreign Language Education, U.S. Department of Education. Visit our FLAS page:

Return to Newsletter Front Page

Canadian Studies Center, March Report, 2013
K-12 STUDY CANADA Receives $20,000 Library of Congress Grant
by Tina Storer, Education and Curriculum Specialist, Center for Canadian-American Studies at Western Washington University

According to The Economist, “the resource-rich Arctic is changing faster than anywhere on Earth, and its biggest transformation is just ahead. Due to climate change, the polar ice cap is shrinking and floating summer ice is projected to disappear altogether, setting alarm bells ringing for environmentalists, but opening up new perspectives for trade and development.” In order to meet future challenges, it is vital that today’s students learn more about issues already at play in the Arctic so it is timely, indeed, that the Pacific Northwest National Resource Center on Canada (a University of Washington-Western Washington University consortium) was recently awarded a $20,000 Teaching with Primary Sources (Western Region) Grant by the Library of Congress to offer a 2-1/2 day professional development workshop for K-12 educators called “Archives on the Arctic: Connecting to Global Issues with Primary Sources”.

The professional development workshop program will be held in Denver, CO in June 2013 on the campus of the Metropolitan State University of Denver (MSUD) in partnership with TPS Western Division staff, so that K-12 social studies and science teachers from throughout the western United States can be trained about cultural and environmental challenges in the circumpolar north as well as about the use of Library of Congress and the World Digital Library archival materials.

Tina Storer, Education and Curriculum Specialist at WWU’s Center for Canadian-American Studies, submitted the grant proposal because the NRC on Canada has developed a strong reputation for K-12 outreach related to the circumpolar north. She will serve as the project director. Nadine Fabbi, Associate Director of UW’s Canadian Studies Center, has extensive expertise and experience on the topic so she will offer three presentations that provide workshop participants with the foundation for teaching about complex historical, cultural, environmental and geo-political issues related to the north. Additional instruction will be offered by Teaching with Primary Sources Program staff and their teacher-associates to introduce participants to a rich reservoir of digitized primary source materials. Instructional tools for actively engaging students in historical inquiry and developing primary source-based curricula for posting on the TPS Western Region and K-12 STUDY CANADA websites will also be shared.

At least twenty leaders in education from across the western United States with experience or interest in performing outreach, including K-12 STUDY CANADA teacher-associates, will be invited to participate in the workshop. A travel stipend will be offered to all and their accommodations, 3 breakfasts, 2 lunches and 1 dinner will be covered by the grant, contingent on participants’ development of curricula and/or performance of additional outreach in their home states.

According to the grantors, the impressive potential for extended outreach was a key factor in the proposal’s success. In addition, because the interrelationships between the US and Canada are particularly pronounced in the Arctic—whether the topic is geographical boundaries, indigenous cultures, resource exploitation, transportation or political conflicts—classroom instruction inevitably leads to this important cross-border relationship and, as such, is a “natural fit” for an NRC on Canada-Library of Congress collaboration. It is hopefully the first of many to come.

“STUDY CANADA,” the Pacific Northwest National Resource Center on Canada’s annual professional development workshop, has been offered by the Center for Canadian-American Studies at Western Washington University for the last 34 years serving educators from almost every state in the nation. The Institute is funded, in part, by a Title VI grant from International and Foreign Language Education, Office of Postsecondary Education, U.S. Department of Education. Paulette is a Humanities and World Language Teacher in the Ida B. Wells School for Social Justice and a U.W. graduate student in Education, Curriculum and Instruction (Multicultural Education). View the K-12 STUDY CANADA website.

Return to Newsletter Front Page

Canadian Studies Center, March Report, 2013
Hood River Middle School becomes Arctic Living Museum
by Tina Storer, Education and Curriculum Specialist, Center for Canadian-American Studies at Western Washington University

6th Grade students at Hood River MS displaying their skills, knowledge and research projects at an Inuit Cultural Fair on Friday, February 1, 2013.

Sarah Segal, a teacher at Hood River Middle School in Oregon, attended the National Council for the Social Studies Conference in Seattle, WA this year for the wonderful professional development opportunities offered there. New Social Studies Content Standards were recently adopted by the Oregon Department of Education (ODE) and include a unit on the Inuit. After participating in a pre-conference clinic at NCSS called "Who Owns the Arctic? Arctic Peoples and Global Change" presented by the National Resource Centers on Canada, Ms. Segal returned to her school inspired to implement a 6th grade-wide cultural unit including exploration of the Inuit Nations of the circumpolar north. Sarah Segal describes the cross-cultural undertaking as a living-museum of students’ learning, enthusiastic generation of traditional artifacts, and participation in the culminating Arctic Cultural Fair activity - highlighting the role of Inuit Peoples of the Arctic Council.

Using resources and information from the “Who Owns the Arctic? Arctic Peoples and Global Change” workshop, along with ODE Social Studies Content Standards, teaching Inuit history created the foundation for the Arctic Cultures unit. Integrating science to investigate how cultures develop due to their environment led to expanding this unit to include ALL regions in the Arctic Circle. Comparing pre-1900 life-ways (prior to arrival of traders) to modern-day life-ways, further directed investigating environmental, social, economic, and political, changes that have taken place in the last century.
Students learned that in 2011, indigenous arctic peoples came together to create the Arctic Council and explored their role in assessing, create reports, and informing the general public about trade routes through the arctic, extraction of natural resources, and how global weather changes effect individual country's environments along the Arctic Ocean.

The entire Hood River Middle School 6th grade then spent the month of January developing a student-created ‘living museum’ Arctic Cultural Fair. Students learning was guided through use of the 8 Cultural Universals: Communication, Arts & Aesthetics, Recreation, Family Structure, Political Organization, Attitudes Towards the Unknown (+ Rituals), Economics, and Food/Clothing/Shelter. Every 6th grade student (180+) dressed to represent their arctic cultural, in addition to displaying a variety of technology presentations and object models of the cultural universals. These will included dancing, games, foods for sampling, murals, informational posters, student-generated and original artifacts, and much more. In addition, the Family and Consumer Science classes used traditional smoking techniques to prepare meat in the school’s native plant arboretum. Furthermore, students researched and created visual displays of their culture in regards to environment. For example, most arctic cultures find significance in the northern lights; treasure meat such as salmon, caribou, and walrus; and the festivals such as Christmas, are derived from folklore of a man bearing gifts on a sleigh and entering the home through chimneys' (because doors are buried under snow), comes from the Lapland Saami of Scandinavia.

On Friday, March 1st, from 1-2pm, the Hood River Middle School Multi-Purpose Room (MPR) was be sectioned into 6 geographic regions to represents the 7 Permanent Arctic Council. Homerooms broken into council members (Inuit, Athabaskan, Gwich’in, Aleut, RAIPON, and Saami) a ‘living-museum’ for public viewing was created.

The NRC on Canada presenters, Nadine Fabbi (UW), Tina Storer (WWU), Betsy Arntzen (U Maine) and Amy Sotherden (SUNY Plattsburgh) were delighted by this impressive outcome of their outreach. It is wonderful to see the impact of Ms. Segal’s newfound knowledge on her students as well as the entire 6th grade class at Hood River Middle School.
Congratulations to Sarah Segal, her fellow 6th grade teachers, and the entire class of students at Hood River Middle School for a job well done! You have not only met but exceeded new content standards and your successful approach will undoubtedly inspire others in the state and across the country to use your unit as a best practice model.

“STUDY CANADA,” the Pacific Northwest National Resource Center on Canada’s annual professional development workshop, has been offered by the Center for Canadian-American Studies at Western Washington University for the last 34 years serving educators from almost every state in the nation. The Institute is funded, in part, by a Title VI grant from International and Foreign Language Education, Office of Postsecondary Education, U.S. Department of Education. Paulette is a Humanities and World Language Teacher in the Ida B. Wells School for Social Justice and a U.W. graduate student in Education, Curriculum and Instruction (Multicultural Education). View the K-12 STUDY CANADA website.

Return to Newsletter Front Page


Sion Romaine, Canadian Studies Librarian (middle), with Frédéric Tremblay, Director, Public Affairs & Government and Alain Houde, Western US Head of Mission, both from the Government of Québec. At the Cirque du Soleil performance, Amaluna. (1/13)

Task Force on Arctic Security student, Ngoc Nguyen, at an ice café in Québec City during the TF research trip to Canada. (01/13)

Task Force on Arctic Security students and instructors at the Inuit Circumpolar Council office. (01/13)



Canadian Studies Center
University of Washington
Box 353650
Thomson Hall, Room 503
Seattle, WA 98195-3650
T (206) 221-6374
F (206) 685-0668