Full Professor, Director of the Institute
Jan Borm is Full Professor in British Literature at the University of Versailles Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines (UVSQ) and UARCTIC Chair in Arctic Humanities (2022-2017). At UVSQ, he is also co-director of the interdisciplinary Master 2 programme “Arctic Studies” affiliated with the University of Paris-Saclay, France’s leading research university. Jan Borm is a specialist of travel literature and writings about the Arctic. He has published numerous articles and book chapters in English, French and German.
He is the author of the portrait Jean Malaurie, un homme singulier (Paris: Éditions du Chêne, 2005) and co-editor of the volume dedicated to Jean Malaurie in the prestigious Cahier de l’Herne series (Paris: Éditions de l’Herne, 2021), as well as co-editor of twelve collective volumes including Le Froid (Montreal: Presses universitaires du Québec, 2018). Past research project participations include “Green Greenland” (funded by the French Research Agency), POLARIS (FP7-Marie-Curie-IRSES) and EDU-ARCTIC (H2020), as well as the Erasmus+ project ERIS (Exploitation of Research Results in School Practice) focused on Arctic research and climate change in STEM education. He is currently participating in the Belmont Forum project NICH-Arctic (From Nunavik to Iceland: Climate, Human and Culture through time across the coastal (sub)Arctic North Atlantic).
In 2019, he received an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Lapland, in Rovaniemi (Finland).
Benjamin Ferguson is currently a Humanities teacher at Carolina Academy in Greenville, South Carolina, USA. He was previously Maître de langue at École normale supérieure de Lyon in France and Secretary of Media Diffusion / Webmaster for SELVA (Société d'étude de la littérature de voyage du monde anglophone).
Benjamin received his PhD from Université Paris-Saclay / Université de Versailles Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines in November of 2020, entitled "Rethinking the Last Frontier: Anglophone travel literature about Alaska in the 20th and 21st centuries – writing, ethics and environmental responsibility." His thesis is focused on the responsibilities required of writers moving through Alaska, how they choose to discuss environmental themes and Native peoples, and the ethics of choices to omit those themes. The primary writers discussed are Peter Matthiessen, John McPhee, Barry Lopez, Tom Lowenstein, Jonathan Raban, and Nancy Lord. Benjamin's Arctic-themed publications are: "Alaska Native Animal Love, in Nancy Lord's Beluga Days," "Ethics of Last Frontier Foodscapes: Creating Environmental Solidarity in Alaska's Diverse Communities through its Culinary Habits, in Julia O'Malley's The Whale and The Cupcake," and "Kaleidoscopic Cook: shifting legacies explored in Barry Lopez' Horizon."
A comprehensive list of his publications can be found at his personal web site: http://benjaminkferguson.weebly.com. Benjamin's research interests are Arctic Studies, Travel Writing, Environmental Studies, and Native Studies.
Benjamin Ferguson is Assistant Editor of the book series “Arctic Humanities” published by Brill.
Post-doctoral Research Fellow
Joanna Kodzik has been a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at Université de Versailles Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines since 2016, working notably within the framework of the Horizon 2020 project EDU-ARCTIC. Previously, she was a Research Fellow at the Leibniz Institute for History and Culture in Eastern Europe (GWZO), University of Leipzig, in 2015-2017 and Research Fellow at the Institute of History, University of Potsdam, in 2012-2014. She received her PhD in early modern German Studies from Nikolaus Copernikus University in Torun, Poland, in 2012, after graduating from there in German Studies with a focus on Cultural History. She also graduated in Sociology and Psychology from FernUniversität, Hagen, Germany.
Her research interests include: the History and literature of the German-speaking regions in the early modern period; the cultural history of the European Arctic; Moravian missionary writing; the history of knowledge about the Arctic as well as the history of communication, ceremonial and performance studies.
Post-doctoral Fellow and Communications Officer
Marie Sikias is a Project and Research Officer at UVSQ and Communications Officer at MIARC. She holds a PhD in Anglophone Studies from the University Paris 3 Sorbonne Nouvelle. Her thesis, defended in 2003, was entitled “The Challenge of Digital Technology to the Regulation of Telecommunications and Broadcasting: the Case of the United Kingdom”. It received special mention at the Research Awards ceremony of the French National Institute for Broadcasting (2004). She is currently participating in several EU-funded projects:
- ERUM: This project aims at improving scientific communication as well as reinforcing the educational offer of universities in the field of media studies, by fostering collaboration between academics and media representatives.
- ERASMUS GOES GREEN: The aim of this project is to estimate the carbon footprint of the Erasmus programme and offer diverse options to reduce and offset it, including the creation of a digital tool to foster the use of greener means of transport by students and staff.
- HLITL: The objective of HLITL is to determine what are the best possible mobility schemes to develop students’ and staff skills and competences. Two variables are taken into account: duration and modality (physical, virtual or blended mobility).
- NORM: The project team considers various options to lift structural or personal (physical, social, economic) obstacles to student and staff mobility in order to prepare institutional and policy recommendations.
Marie is currently developing a project involving secondary school teachers and university teachers-researchers in order to enhance climate change teaching at secondary school level, with a special focus on the Arctic.
Her research interest are digital content and networks, scientific communication and mediation, international relations, environment.
Early Stage Researcher
Alexandre Delangle is currently working as a French Native Speaker Teaching Assistant at Albion College, Michigan, in the Modern Languages Department where he has been teaching, French language & civilization to Freshmen and Senior students since August 2020. His duties also include the organization of weekly cultural activities & other events, private lessons and individual support / teaching to small & large groups. He graduated from the University of Paris-Saclay’s Master 2 programme in Arctic Studies – Environment, Development and Culture in 2020 with distinction (mention “très bien”). His masters’ thesis entitled “Prophesying Arctic Power, Vilhjalmur Stefansson and the United States’s strategic polar culture 1918-1951” supervised by J. Borm received the grade of 20 out of 20, unprecedented in the history of the programme launched in 2010. Prior to his Arctic Studies degree, he graduated from the University of Paris II Panthéon-Assas/ University of Paris IV Paris-Sorbonne with a masters degree in Political Sciences – International Relationships.
Alexandre is also currently working on his PhD dissertation under Professor Borm’s supervision at MIARC/UVSQ/UParis-Saclay dedicated to Vihjalmur Stefansson and U.S. Arctic foreign policy in the years 1918-1951. His research interests include the Arctic, Greenland, United States, Greenland, Foreign Policy and World War II.
Early Stage Researcher
Ivanna Knysh is currently an International Project Manager at UVSQ and early stage researcher at MIARC/UVSQ/UParis-Saclay. She graduated in geography from Taras Shevchenko National University iun Kiev, Ukraine, in 2018 and in Arctic Studies from UVSQ/UParis-Saclay in 2019 where she was laureate of a scholarship as part of the Paris-Saclay excellent incoming international Masters students programme.
She is currently working on her PhD dissertation under Professor Borm’s supervision dedicated to the representation of biodiversity in modern and contemporary travel literature about the Arctic.