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Aileen A. Espiritu




Aileen A. Espíritu is a researcer at the Barents Institute at the University of Tromsø, The Arctic University of Norway. She was previously an Assistant Professor (Tenured) at the University of Northern British Columbia, Canada, teaching Northern Studies, Soviet and Russian social history and politics, indigenous, and gender studies. She has published on her research on the impact of industrialization on indigenous peoples in Siberia and more generally on Circumpolar Northern communities. She has also published on her current research on the comparative study of border identities, border crossings, and life on the borderlands of Europe especially in an expanded EU.  Aileen has ongoing research on sustainable development in the Arctic regions, notably its urban areas; region-building in the Arctic and the Barents Region; identity politics in indigenous and non-indigenous Northern communities; the impact of industrialization and post-industrialization on mono-industry towns in the High North; and the politics of community sustainability in Russia in comparative perspective.


Future North

Posts written by Aileen (4)

Murmansk: a coastal city?

Forged by its strategic location and by geopolitics, Murmansk has been the primary port city in the Russian Arctic since it was established in 1916. With access to ice-free routes to the Barents Sea and open waters to the West, Murmansk has been a strategic military port and indeed has been witness to two World Wars.

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Heroic Kola

Two wars have touched this Northern expanse over the last hundred years, most dramatically in the Second World War when the Soviet Red Army defeated the Germans on the fields of Zapadnaya Litsa and then liberated Norway in October 1944.

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A bulwark against dystopia

A new Russian Orthodox church is being built in the industrial town of Nikel on the Kola peninsula. Its construction involves the use of traditional building techniques, recalling an architecture that predates the founding of the town.

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Northern arrival

The AHO Future North team has met up locally in Kirkenes with our partners at the Barents Institute. This is our first joint visit to the Circumpolar North. Our project team has gathered together a diverse set of interests and competencies: landscape theory, architecture, interaction design, ethnography, political science, and narrative.

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