People

Peter Schweitzer

Univ.-Prof. Dr. Peter Schweitzer

Principal Investigator

Research Group Leader at the Austrian Polar Research Institute; Prof. emer. at the University of Alaska Fairbanks

Peter is Professor at the Department of Social and Cultural Anthropology at the University of Vienna and Professor Emeritus at the University of Alaska Fairbanks. He is past president of the International Arctic Social Sciences Association (IASSA) and served as director of the Austrian Polar Research Institute (APRI) from 2016 to 2020.

Research Focus: Schweitzer’s theoretical interests range from kinship and identity politics to human-environmental interactions, including the social lives of infrastructure and the community effects of global climate change; his regional focus areas include the circumpolar North and the former Soviet Union. He has published widely on all of these issues.

Selected Publications (ORCID)

 

Olga Povoroznyuk

Dr. Olga Povoroznyuk

Research Coordinator and Study Region Lead (Russia)

Olga is a PostDoc Researcher and Lecturer at the Department of Social and Cultural Anthropology, University of Vienna, where she has previously worked on the project Configurations of Remoteness (CoRe): Entanglements between Humans and Transport Infrastructure in the Baikal-Amur Mainline (BAM) Region. She received her highest degree at the Russian Academy of Sciences in Moscow and is a member of the Association of Anthropologists and Ethnologists of Russia, of the Austrian Polar Research Institute, and a working group on infrastructure and climate change within the International Arctic Science Committee.

Research Focus: Her research interests include infrastructure and development, postsocialist transformations, indigeneity, ethnicity and identity, colonialism, migrations and mobility in Russia and in Circumpolar North. She has a number of publications, including a book on these issues. In this project, she focuses on settlements and sea ports tied together by the infrastructures of the Northern Sea Route. She explores the historically determined interrelationship between infrastructural development, population dynamics, and living conditions in the Russian Artic.

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Selected Publications (ORCID)

 

Philipp Budka

Dr. Philipp Budka

Study Region Lead (North America)

Philipp is a PostDoc Researcher and Lecturer at the Department of Social and Cultural Anthropology, University of Vienna. He completed his PhD at the University of Vienna with a dissertation on socio-technical change in remote First Nation communities in Canada. His research demonstrates that the localization of digital infrastructures contributes to the creation of social relations and to cultural empowerment.

Research Focus: Philipp has been researching infrastructures, technologies and media from an anthropological perspective in Canada, Austria, and Mexico. His research has been published in a variety of journals and volumes. Recently, he co-edited two books on the relationality of media technologies, ritual, and performance, as well as conflict. In this project, Philipp ethnographically explores local perspectives on the multiple affordances of transport (and digital) infrastructures in sustaining communities in Canada.

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Selected Publications (ORCID)

 

Alexis Sancho Reinoso

Dr. Alexis Sancho Reinoso

Researcher (Integration Component)

Member of the Austrian Polar Research Institute; currently also working as freelance geographer (lecturing at UNIBA-Universitat de Barcelona in Spain and Universitat Carlemany in Andorra; external expert for the Interreg-MED project EMbleMatiC Plus).

Alexis was born in Barcelona (Spain) and holds a PhD in Geography, Spatial Planning and Environmental Management. Since 2018 he has been working at the Department of Social and Cultural Anthropology of the University of Vienna. He was part of the project Configurations of Remoteness (CoRe): Entanglements between Humans and Transport Infrastructure in the Baikal-Amur Mainline (BAM) Region, being responsible for statistical and cartographic analysis as well as for the outreach portal www.lifeofbam.com.

Research Focus: Alexis is interested in exploring the spatial dimension of human-environmental relationships, and specifically cultural landscape, Toponymy, and territorial development (the latter mainly focused on rural/mountain/marginal areas). He is also interested in cartographic representations of such relationships by using GIS analysis and by developing storytelling.

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Selected Publications (ORCID)

 

Alexandra Meyer

Alexandra Meyer, PhD student 

Affiliated Researcher (Europe)

Svalbard Social Science Initiative, The University Centre in Svalbard (UNIS), Austrian Polar Research Institute

Alexandra is a PhD student at the Department of Social and Cultural Anthropology at the University of Vienna, and a project collaborator in the EU project Nunataryuk: Permafrost thaw and the changing Arctic coast – Science for socioeconomic adaptation. She is board member of the Svalbard Social Science Initiative.

Research Focus: Through long-term ethnographic fieldwork in Longyearbyen, Svalbard, she investigates how the town is impacted by environmental and socio-economic changes, and how people live with, experience, perceive, and respond to these changes. She also studies the practices and associated values of outdoor life and nature use on Svalbard.

 

Ria-Maria Adams

Ria-Maria Adams, PhD student

Affiliated Researcher (Europe)

Arctic Anthropology Team – Rovaniemi Arctic Centre, Austrian Polar Research Institute, EASA Applied Anthropology Network

Ria-Maria is a PhD student at the Department of Social and Cultural Anthropology, University of Vienna. She has previously worked for the project Live, Work or Leave? Youth – wellbeing and the viability of (post) extractive Arctic industrial cities in Finland and Russia (University of Lapland) and currently contributes to the ERA-Net/Horizon 2020 project Enhancing liveability of small shrinking cities through co-creation (Aalto University) as a guest researcher.

Research Focus: Ria-Maria’s research interests revolve around Arctic youth wellbeing, industrial northern towns and sustainable communities in Northern Finland. Since 2018, she has conducted ethnographic research in Rovaniemi, Kolari, Kemijärvi, Pyhäjoki, and Puolanka.

Selected Publications (ORCID)

 

Katrin Schmid

Katrin Schmid, PhD student 

Affiliated Researcher (North America)

Katrin is a PhD student at the Department of Social and Cultural Anthropology at the University of Vienna. She completed her Masters degree at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, where she collaborated with Gitxaała Nation on their cumulative effects assessment. Her research there describes ongoing interactions between settler colonialism, anthropogenic climate change, natural resource extraction, and Gitxaała’s access to food and resources.

Research Focus: Katrin’s research interests include perceptions of change and the environment, especially through the lens of cumulative effects analyses, and their influence on the sustainability and imagined futures of communities. For this project, she will be working in Nunavut, Canada.