Free uni webinars to link island researchers worldwide

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Island-based researchers at the University of the Highlands and Islands (UHI) are inviting like-minded experts on other islands worldwide to join a new free seminar series starting this month.

‘The ‘Islands Matter’ collaborative programme has been set up to strengthen the university’s pan-island research activities and nurture global networking connections,’ the UHI said.

‘Each seminar addresses a range of island-based economic and cultural topics and questions to facilitate new ways of thinking and collaborations by sharing learning and research between island communities.’

Speaking about the new initiative Dr Andrew Jennings from the UHI’s Institute for Northern Studies, based in Shetland, said: ‘It has been a pleasure to work with colleagues Professor Frank Rennie and Dr Beth Mouat to bring this new series to life.

As the only university with a physical base within each of Scotland’s main islands groupings, we have a unique ability to serve our island communities, and this includes playing an active role in connecting researchers who are based on Scottish islands with others.

‘The seminar series builds on the university’s connectivity with other island groupings around the world and reaffirms the growing importance of research-driven island culture and historical contributions to global issues such as climate change, repopulation and sustainability.’

Speakers in the series include, on October 21, Dr Laurie Brinklow who teaches ‘Islandness’ in the Master of Arts in Island Studies program at the University of Prince Edward Island, Canada, followed by Professor Chik Collins, Principal of the University of the Faroe Islands, on November 18.

Finally this year on December 2, Professor Owe Ronstrom from Gotland will talk about his research into islandness and the history, heritage and music of Gotland, his island home. He is an active musician and plays in the bands Orientexpressen, Gunnfjauns kapell, and is the director of Gotlands Balalajkaorkester. In June 2013 he produced BelleSounds, the world’s largest concert.

To find out more information and register to attend visit www.uhi.ac.ukevents