CLIMAVORE: On Tidal Zones’ October block of programming will take stock of the project’s history over the past five years, celebrating local partnerships, conversations, alternative ingredients, economy, industry and looking at the climate crisis. We aim to acknowledge the complexed, nuanced interspecies relationships between ourselves, the coasts and of course (inter)tidal zones.
We have a series of events throughout October in relation to this, which you can find here:
MA Creative Media Practice student Julia Tirkkonen will exhibit her photography as part of the wider creative and cultural events being held in Turku, Finland to celebrate the Turku Sea Jazz festival and the wider Archipelago Sea Jazz concept. The first Turku Sea Jazz event will be held at the atmospheric Ruissalo Boatyard during the last weekend of July (30-31st July, 2021).
Exhibiting for the first time, Julia’s 2021 Masters Project work will be shown along with other established artists at the boatyard as part of the wider Turku sea jazz festival. Julia’s creative practice details her exploration of Finnish landscape as sea, islands and coastal fringe developed for her final MA Creative Project. A further solo exhibition in Helsinki is planned for Autumn 2021. Julia’s work on the Baltic Sea, islands and coast is supervised by Dr Kathryn A. Burnett, Division of Arts and Media, UWS.
“Nature is a very important part of my everyday life, and now that I’ve moved to the southern coast of Finland I have become more familiar with the Baltic Sea, its beauty, and the issues it faces. I decided I want to bring more attention to that through my art, and the MA Creative Media Practice course has been a perfect place for me to develop my skills not only as a nature photographer but also in producing art exhibitions and taking my creative practice to a more professional level.”
The University of Strathclyde is currently recruiting a part time position (0.7 FTE – so three days a week more or less) to manage the project. This is a unique opportunity to be part of an exciting project on climate change, youth and islands before, during and after COP26. The project will work with island based children in Scotland and beyond to bring their message back to COP26 and will then return to the islands to share how that message was received by policymakers and climate stakeholders.
The Strathclyde Centre for Environmental Law and Governance (SCELG) has been awarded a grant from Scottish Government to carry out the COP 26 related “Climate Change Message in a Bottle Project” –
“As a Knowledge Exchange Assistant, you will assist in the management and delivery of the project under the general supervision of senior colleagues. Under their guidance, you will liaise directly with external partners to provide support with the terms of the project. You will also input as a team member to administrative activities. In particular, you will be asked to: 1) identify and liaise with schools (mainly primary schools) on Scottish islands and to work closely with project partners to identify potential schools on islands beyond Scotland; 2) work closely with project partners to manage the delivery of in person and virtual school workshops on climate change and COP26, both before and after the COP; 3) liaise with project partners to successfully plan and deliver one or more project related events in Glasgow during COP26. The successful candidate will be encouraged to bring her/his own passion and ideas to the project in order to make it as impactful as possible.”
It is anticipated that this role will start at the beginning of August 2021.
Scotland’s islands are diverse, resourceful and singularly iconic in national and global imaginations of places ‘apart’ yet readily reached. This collection of essays offers a fascinating commentary on Scotland’s island communities that celebrates their histories, cultures and economies in general terms. Recognising a complex geography of distinct regions and island spaces, the collection speaks to broader themes of tangible and intangible cultural heritage, narratives of place and people, the ideas and policies of island and regional distinctiveness, as well as particular examinations of literature, language, migration, land reform, and industry. With a view to placing ideas and expressions of islandness within a lived reality of island life and scholarship, the collection provides a multidisciplinary perspective on the value of continued and expanding research commentaries on Scotland’s islands for both a Scottish and an international readership.
This book should instantly appeal to scholars of Island Studies, Scottish Studies, and Regional Studies of northern and peripheral Europe. Readers with particular interests in the sociology and history of Scottish rural and northern Atlantic communities, the cultural histories and economies of remote and island places, and the pressing socioeconomic agenda of small island sustainability, community building and resilience should also find the collection offers current commentaries on these broad themes illustrated with local island examples and contingencies.
Registration from 9:30 am
Venue: The Technology and Innovation Centre, University of Strathclyde
This event aims to evaluate the current policy and practice of land reform in line with aspirations of social justice and with particular focus on forestry and energy. Bringing together experienced land reform researchers, journalists and public representatives, with community organisations and energy, labour and law academics.
There will be talks from Andy Wightman, MSP, Lesley Riddoch, author; Peter Peacock, former MSP and land reform campaigner; and Angela Williams from the Knoydart Foundation and Director of Community Land Scotland. Followed by panel and audience discussion with contributions from Tiffany Kane, Operations Manager, organiser and campaigner for Common Weal and Kathryn A. Burnett, School of Media, Culture and Society, University of the West of Scotland is Co-Director of the Scottish Centre for Island Studies<https://scotcis.wordpress.com/about/>.
The event is supported by Scottish Universities Insight Institute and is dedicated to the memory of John Booth of the Isle of Eigg renewable energy system. We are delighted to be joined by representatives from the island at the event
Who should attend?
We encourage all with an interest in land reform, community energy, forestry and tackling social inequality to attend.
This is an event that is open to the public.
Benefits of attending
This events brings together some of the most respected voices in Scottish Land reform along with community representatives and researchers who have been focusing on localised energy and forestry projects. This promises to be a provocative session that places the idea of social justice firmly at the centre the debate designed to inform future policy and practice.
Department of Work, Employment & Organisation
University of Strathclyde, Glasgow
The purpose of the Just Transition Commission is to advise Scottish Ministers on how to apply Just Transition principles to Scotland. These principles can be summarised as:
o plan, invest and implement a transition to environmentally and socially sustainable jobs, sectors and economies, building on Scotland’s economic and workforce strengths and potential
o create opportunities to develop resource efficient and sustainable economic approaches, which help address inequality and poverty
o design and deliver low carbon investment and infrastructure, and make all possible efforts to create decent, fair and high value work, in a way which does not negatively affect the current workforce and overall economy
Mike has varied research interests including regional economic development, regional development agencies, enterprise development, microbreweries, basic income, early-onset dementia, community ownership and management of land and other resources.
Since 1997, he has authored over 250 research papers, many published in international scientific journals and books. His research work is frequently presented at international conferences. Mike is Professor Emeritus in Enterprise Policy, Heriot-Watt University, Visiting Professor in the Centre for Energy Policy, Strathclyde University, Chair of Citizen’s Basic Income Network Scotland and Vice Chair of the Reid Foundation.
There will be a meeting of the Scottish Centre for Island Studies on Thursday 5th July 2018 at UWS Paisley Campus (Room J251). The meeting will include updates on current SCIS related projects. It will also provide an opportunity for discussion around new links and for proposed new activity.
*Apologies – we have moved the venue to Paisley UWS campus as CCA room is currently unavailable.
Supporting, strengthening and protecting island communities.
An historic bill has been introduced to Parliament to meet the unique needs of Scotland’s islands now and in the future. The Islands (Scotland) Bill today (12 June) will help create the right environment for sustainable growth and empowered communities.
Measures in the bill will include:
A requirement to ‘island proof’ future legislation and policies
The creation of a National Islands Plan
Statutory protection for the Na h-Eileanan an lar Scottish parliamentary constituency boundary
Greater flexibility around Councillor representation within island communities
Extended powers to island councils in relation to marine licencing
Islands Minister Humza Yousaf said:
“This government is committed to promoting islands’ voices, to harnessing islands’ resources and enhancing their well-being. The measures in this bill underpin this ambition.
In particular, the provision to ‘island-proof’ decision-making across the public sector will ensure the interests of islanders are reflected in future legislation and policy from the very outset.
“The National Islands Plan will set out the strategic direction for supporting island communities, continuing the momentum generated by the ‘Our Islands Our Future’ campaign and the work of the Islands Strategic Group.
“This is the first ever bill for Scotland’s islands, marking an historic milestone for our island communities. I am proud and privileged as Islands Minister to be guiding the Bill through Scotland’s Parliament. ”
Professor Timo Jokela and Professor Glen Coutts of the University of Lapland bring together artists, art educators and researchers from across the Arctic Sustainable Arts and Design (ASAD) network in this edited collection of essays examining themes of culture, community and communication and the book details are provided below including links to where it can be accessed in digital and print form.
Relate North. Culture, Community and Communication
Drawing on projects and studies from northern countries, Relate North: Culture, Community and Communication explores contemporary practices in arts-based research and knowledge exchange in the fields of art and design. This anthology contains contributions from Canada, England, Finland, Norway, Russia and Scotland.
The interrelated themes of ‘culture’, ‘community’ and ‘communication’ formed the basis of the call that was issued to researchers, artists and designers. The chapters and visual essays in the book interpret the terms ‘arts’ and ‘design’ broadly to include, for example, crafts, indigenous making, media and product design. Aspects of culture and community are explored through the lens of contemporary arts and design. The contributing authors provide thought-provoking accounts of current practice in art, design and education.
Relate North brings together the work of leading scholars to explore issues of contemporary art, design, and arts-based research. The book will be of interest to a wide audience including, for example, practice-based researchers, artists, designers, anthropologists, geographers and social scientists in addition to those with a general interest in Northern and Arctic issues.
Re-visioning “North” as an ecosophical context for creative practices
Annamari Manninen & Mirja Hiltunen
Dealing with complexity – Pupils’ representations of place in the era of Arctic urbanization
Kathryn A. Burnett
Place apart: Scotland’s north as a cultural industry of margins
Irina V. Zemtsova & Valery Sharapov
“Tradition that does not exist”: Wood painting of Komi-ziryans
Essi Kuure, Heidi Pietarinen & Hannu Vanhanen
Experimenting with arctic social phenomena. A multicultural workshop model
Designing for Nova Scotia Gaelic cultural revitalization: Collaborating, designing & transmitting cultural meaning
Anne Bevan & Jane Downes
Wilder Being: Destruction and creation in the littoral zone
A Tundra Project: Melting ice as an artistic material
Lapland University Press is a university publisher established in 2005. Its mission is to increase awareness of Northern and Arctic issues and culture in the scientific community and it has cooperated with the ASDA research network and published three earlier Relate North issues. Relate North. Culture, Community and Communication you can buy from Juvenes Bookstore or download it from Lauda-database
Acting Head of Publications
A Trans-disciplinary Conference the Scottish Centre for Geopoetics in collaboration with the University of the Highlands and Islands Seil, Easdale, Kilmartin and Luing, Argyll
22-24 June 2017
Call for Engagement: https://www.facebook.com/events/1254649587891661/
Creative workshops, presentations, papers and performances
‘Geopoetics is concerned, fundamentally, with a relationship to the earth and the
opening of a world’.
The Scottish Centre for Geopoetics and the University of the Highlands and Islands
will host Expressing the Earth in Argyll 2017 to bring together creative artists,
musicians, poets and film makers along with academics, researchers, students and
teachers to explore, create and debate the earth and the environment in this
spectacular area of Scotland.
‘Atlantic space, the west coast of Europe, is characterised in the first instance by
fragmentation … a multitude, a proliferation of islands and peninsulas separated
by difficult waters. It is a territory of dispersion and precariousness – but each
fragment is exact in itself, there is no confusion in this plurality. In a word, unity
is not something given, to be taken for granted, it has to be composed.’ (Kenneth
Expressing the Earth will look to the multitude and proliferation of the islands
and peninsulas and address the ways in which people are influenced and brought
together by these features from the Neolithic and Bronze Age, early Celtic Christian
heritage and seafaring history to more recent industrial exploitation of the
Themes and activities, rooted in Geopoetics, include literature, history, visual
arts, film making, archaeology, geology, geography and theology – with active engagement and creative outcomes as central to the conference as academic papers
The conference will take place at the Seil Island Hall in Argyll with field activities
also in Kilmartin Glen, Easdale Island and the Isle of Luing. Poetry readings, musical
performances and social gatherings will play a key part in the conference programme
and it is intended that publications and exhibitions will follow.
Professor Mike Danson in The Conversation on island resilience and human capital as exemplified by the community of Eigg.
“In March, after a short fieldwork trip to Eigg, I found myself stormbound for three days. Ferries only land every other day, so this enforced delay confirmed how vulnerable and yet resilient such communities are. That the people of Eigg can take such disruption in their stride is testimony to islanders’ resilience generally, but it also demonstrated the capacity to accommodate visitors, to ensure those living alone were kept warm, fed and well.”
“What was revealed was the rich human capital, the resourcefulness of the people of Eigg and the way in which the residents led by the Trust have grown into managing and developing this community. Work and incomes are critical to the survival of such communities, yet the islanders voted against a fish farm development in line with their Green Eigg eco-commitment.”
Current Scottish land reform and reclaiming the Commons: building Community Resilience
INDIGO international symposium,
January 20th 2016
KU Leuven, Leuven, Campus Arenberg
Mike Danson Heriot-Watt University and Kathryn A Burnett University of the West of Scotland
Land and community ownership and management of assets are fundamental to economies and societies throughout northern Europe, and especially to those on the periphery and margins of the continent (Danson and de Souza, 2012). In a move to reduce the contrasts with the Nordic countries, recent changes in land ownership in Scotland have created spaces within which local people can nurture and develop the collective capabilities which will help their communities to sustain and grow. Achieving such fundamental change locally necessarily has involved coming together and acting as a defined community, with governance structures recognised by the State under dedicated land reform legislation. As elsewhere, the specific type and nature of economic and social development depends on the particularities of each community buy-out but all of the cases in Scotland are based on community ownership of the commons, confirming that the ‘commons’ are critical to understanding the processes and outcomes of people taking over their most basic of assets in these remote geographies – land and property. Further, all have demonstrated enterprise, innovation, initiative and planning to realise repopulation, improved housing, employment and business growth, and regeneration of the natural flora and fauna (Burnett and Danson, 2014).
This paper offers an historical and contemporary perspective of land ownership in the Highlands and Islands of Scotland as both a reason for marginality and as a constraint on development. Theoretical perspectives underpinning the analysis are introduced and applied to recognise the origins of cooperative and community activities within these communities as being grounded approaches to meeting the ‘tragedy of the commons’ (Hardin, 1968) in harsh and difficult environments. It is argued that, alongside historical legacies and social norms, the long-established particular local institutional arrangements to address the peculiar physical, social and political contexts have created the foundations for subsequent community buy-outs of privately and state owned land and property. The forms and nature of these developments are assessed within the rules and property rights literature, as articulated in particular by Ostrom (2008) and Schlager and Ostrom (1992), to analyse the processes at work which have created opportunities for collective economic development within these communities. This is followed by an outline of the fundamental changes that have been taking place in land ownership, and the developments contingent on this, in remote and difficult to access areas of the Highlands and Islands of Scotland. Current moves to introduce more widespread land reform legislation and community empowerment are considered, with a particular focus on where the transfer of public assets and responsibilities is involved.
The discussion addresses the challenges faced by isolated communities and community volunteers in meeting expectations of different stakeholders and local members of the community, in delivering ambitious aspirations and plans, and in sustaining energies and consensus. The paper complements the other contributions on “Ploughing up the Landed Commons”: by considering the lived experiences of small fragile communities on the periphery which are differentiated by their geography, histories and assets (broadly defined to include natural and human heritage), before concluding with suggestions for policy recommendations and ideas for further research.
Burnett, K. and Danson, M. (2014) ‘Entrepreneurship and enterprise on islands’, in Exploring Rural Enterprise: New Perspectives on Research, Policy & Practice (Contemporary Issues in Entrepreneurship Research, Volume 4) Emerald Group Publishing Limited, pp.151 – 174, eds C Henry and G McElwee.
Danson, M. and de Souza, P. (eds.) (2012) Regional Development in Northern Europe: Peripherality, Marginality and Border Issues, Abingdon: Routledge.
Danson, M., Callaghan, G. and Whittam, G. ‘Economic and enterprise development in community buy-outs’, in Peripherality, Marginality and Border Issues in Northern Europe, eds M Danson and P de Souza, Abingdon: Routledge.
Hardin, G. (1968) ‘The tragedy of the Commons’, Science, 162(3859): 1243–8.
Ostrom, E. (2008) Governing the Commons. The Evolution of Institutions for Collective Action, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Schlager, E. and Ostrom, E. (1992) ‘Property-rights regimes and natural resources: a conceptual analysis’, Land Economics 68(3): 249–62.
Minister Humza Yousaf announced that legislation to empower Scotland’s island communities is to be progressed:
“Our islands make a significant contribution to Scottish life from both a cultural and economic perspective. As such, I am immensely proud to be able to announce that I am bringing forward an Islands Bill less than a year after my predecessor launched the Government’s consultation on potential provisions.
“We have placed the aspirations and needs of our island communities at the centre of our empowerment agenda. Drawing on the work of both the Island Areas Ministerial Working Group and the consultation findings, the Bill will provide lasting benefits for all our island communities for generations to come.
“I believe that this demonstrates our strong and continued support for our island communities and our desire to deliver quickly on the election promises set out in our manifesto. I now look forward to working with the various island communities and representatives in bringing this into effect over the next year.”
The Islands Bill follows a period of consultation and debate on Scotland’s islands futures and it is proposed that the legislation be brought forward and delivered during the next 12 months, within the first year of the new parliamentary session.
The local authorities of Shetland (Shetland Islands Council) , Orkney (Orkney Islands Council) and the Western Isles (Comhairle nan Eilean Siar), along with a number of key island and ‘remote peripheral region’ related organisations, have variously called for greater control over local matters and raised key isses and debate on Scotland’s islands long term social and economic future not least through the campaign, Our islands – Our Future, in the lead up to 2014’s Scottish independence referendum.
“Despite the sonorous magnificence of Shakespeare’s John of Gaunt monologue, England is not an island. Rather this ‘England, that was wont to conquer others’ just thinks, acts, governs, talks, plays and presents itself as if it is. For the island polity known as ‘Britain’, more formally as ‘Great Britain (GB)’, the ‘United Kingdom (UK)’ is an odd place. In spite of its self-promotion as the ostensible product of a long, stable and immutable partnership of equals, the ‘national’ institutions of this state-nation consistently present themselves as those of a singular ‘nation-state’ through the monofocal prism of the dominant ‘island race’ of England: the English historical narrative of ‘this sceptred isle’, and a smothering blanket of English cultural referents.”
Investing in Small Island Recovery: Archipelagic Approaches to Sustainable Living
20 April 2012, North Unst Public Hall
Sustainable Development and Renewable Energies: Perceptions and Powers in Island Communities.
Paper by Geoff Whittam (University of the West of Scotland, Scotland), Kathryn A. Burnett (University of the West of Scotland, Scotland), and Mike Danson (University of the West of Scotland, Scotland)
This paper examines the development of renewable energy schemes in the islands of the north west of Scotland, and in particular explores the impacts of different forms of community, cooperative, corporate and private ownership and investment on the distribution of benefits to local people. Using asset management approaches to analyse how alternative ownership patterns of land and resources and of renewable energy initiatives may affect local communities, it seeks to identify the advantages and costs of pursuing different models of development based on these contrasting forms of ownership. Attention is also paid to how local communities engage with these debates and decisions by analysing the public discourse on proposed renewable schemes, with reference to digital broadcast, print, and new media forms. The paper therefore addresses three key issues: which renewables projects are chosen and how are they structured and managed; what revenue flows are generated and how are these distributed; and finally, in relation to the above, some comment on how ‘public’ perceptions are both constructed and managed across media forms in relation to renewable energy and island communities in Scotland.
Research Network Title: Regional Studies Association Research Network: Acquiring Community Assets, the Role of Social Capital and the Establishment of Alternative Energy Resources
The research network will investigate the issues which arise when ‘communities’ have been given the opportunity to manage and/or purchase resources for ‘development’ purposes. The resources can be anything from land and physical structures, such as a particular building, to institutional resources, such as organisations, joint / community ownership / community commons and community stewardship to safeguard or promote development. The ‘development’ may consist of socio-economic development, sustainable development or for the pursuit of sport and recreational usage.
If you wish to be involved in this network please contact any of the organisers below:
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