Research by the humanities and social sciences community is becoming increasingly important within Antarctic research. In 2005, a group looking at the history of the institutionalisation of Antarctic research held the first of its annual meetings. But it wasn't until the International Polar Year 2007-2008, which included “human dimensions” as a major theme, that social sciences began to emerge within the Antarctic community. A social sciences group was established in 2010 and became the Humanities and Social Sciences Expert Group (HASSEG) in 2014. The History Group was granted expert group status in 2011.
Since 2013, the two groups have held joint meetings, organising workshops and conference sessions at SCAR's Open Science Conferences (OSCs), and holding joint conferences in the intervening years.
In 2018, the two groups officially merged and were recognised by SCAR as a Standing Committee on the Humanities and Social Sciences (SC-HASS).
This Expert Group aims to obtain insight into the development of how Antarctic research was institutionalized, to study to what degree research in Antarctica has been driven by scientific criteria and to what extent compromises were made in the light of political barriers and logistical limitations.
This Expert Group aims to bring together researchers in the humanities and social sciences with an interest in the Antarctic region, facilitate the exchange of news, publications and research ideas, organize regular conferences and workshops, and organize research projects around different topics.
Joint Activities between the SCAR History and Humanities and Social Sciences Expert Groups
Standing Committee on the Humanities and Social Sciences Conference 2019
A conference titled "Antarctic Connections at the End of the World: Understanding the Past and Shaping the Future" will be held from 3-5 April 2019 in Ushuaia, Argentina. More information on this conference is available from the website of the Standing Committee on the Humanities and Social Sciences.
Joint SCAR History, Humanities and Social Sciences Conference 2017
A joint SCAR History, Humanities and Social Sciences conference was held at the University of Tasmania (Hobart) from 5-7 July 2017. The conference, entitled: "Depths and Surfaces: Understanding the Antarctic Region through the Humanities and Social Sciences," attracted over 100 delegates from all over the world. For more, see http://antarctica-hasseg.com/biennial-conference-2017/.
A short video created during the event is available below:
A longer version of the video is available at https://vimeo.com/229227070?from=outro-embed
Joint SCAR History, Humanities and Social Sciences Conference 2015
A joint SCAR History, Humanities and Social Sciences conference was held at Colorado State University in Fort Collins/Boulder (Colorado, USA) on 20-23 May 2015, entitled: "Antarctic Wilderness: Perspectives from History, the Humanities and the Social Sciences".
Joint SCAR History EG and SCAR Social Sciences EG session 2014
A joint Humanities session was held at the SCAR OSC in Auckland (New Zealand) on 28 August 2014 entitled: "Presence of the past and methods and innovations in polar social sciences".
- pdf Report of the joint Humanities session (42 KB)
- pdf Abstracts of papers from the joint Humanities session (101 KB)
Joint SCAR History EG and SCAR Social Sciences AG Workshop
A joint workshop was held by the History EG and Social Sciences AG at the British Antarctic Survey, Cambridge, UK from 1-5 July 2013. The workshop was co-sponsored by SCAR and BAS.