The implications of a global pandemic for how we engage with Antarctica, with each other and in our institutions, have been on the minds of many and have forced a re-examination of our values, our priorities and our ways of life. It prompted the Standing Committee on the Humanities and Social Sciences to respond to a suggestion by the SCAR President to look into this topic further. This is how this project was born.
In June 2021, Project Director Daniela Liggett talked about the research project in the episode "Visitors and the Virus" on the Polar Times podcast. You can listen to the episode on Google Podcasts, PodBean, Spotify or Amazon.
What is the impact of COVID-19 on Antarctic research and researchers?
What are the long-term implications of COVID-19 for Antarctic operations and governance?
The research team created a survey about COVID-19 impacts for Antarctic researchers, support staff, students, and anyone else involved in Antarctic research or logistics to complete. Responses have helped the team to understand how the community is affected and will inform strategic decisions to mitigate impacts. Results from this survey can be accessed in the pdf Final Report (1.57 MB) .
The project is structured into six Work Packages (WP) and is using a mixed-methods approach to meeting its research objectives, including futures scanning, interviews, surveys, social media analysis, media-based desk study, document analysis, and literature reviews. Currently more than 40 researchers from all over the world and with different disciplinary backgrounds, from anthropology to zoology, are contributing to this project.