Want to maximize the impact of your Northern research?

Turn your science into a visual story!

The Association of Canadian Universities for Northern Studies (ACUNS) and the Association of Polar Early Career Scientists (APECS) Canada, with funding support from ArcticNet, announce the “Arctic Science to Art” contest grand finale. Congratulations to contest winner Myrah Graham, a Master of Science student at the Fisheries and Marine Institute of Memorial University of Newfoundland, and Yukon-based artist Misha Donohoe on their outstanding work of art. This achievement is the culmination of a unique knowledge mobilization opportunity designed for early-career researchers to share their Arctic studies with northern communities for educational outreach.

The illustration, “Who Lives on the Bottom of the Ocean?” is a visual voyage that delves into Ms. Graham’s research on the animals called benthos and their communities that help keep the ocean healthy. The combined talents of Ms. Graham’s academic research and Ms. Donohoe’s artistic flair draws the audience into an underwater journey of discovery and diversity on the Arctic seafloor. Colourful and engaging, it excels at translating science into an accessible and relatable illustrative story for a non-scientific audience. Available in English, French, Inuktitut and Inuttitut, this collaboration celebrates Western and Indigenous knowledge-sharing.

Read more.

Last year’s winner

In partnership with APECS Canada, ACUNS launched the Illustrate Your Research contest in June 2022 to promote Knowledge Mobilization (KMb). Early-career researchers, students and northern research assistants were encouraged to demonstrate their knowledge about an issue that affects northern communities and explain the relevance of their project in plain language and pictures. The goal of the contest is to make scientific research accessible and relatable to a non-specialist audience using an illustrative multi-panelled storyboard, a.k.a. the comic strip.

Congratulations to Spencer Weinstein, a PhD candidate at the University of Waterloo, Department of Biology. Her study on climate change impacts on char in Kugluktuk, Nunavut, responds to community concerns by local fishers.

“Climate change is disproportionately affecting Arctic environments and communities, including in the town of Kugluktuk, Nunavut. Kugluktuk sits on the Coppermine River, which supports a subsistence char fishery. Recently, fishers have observed fewer char entering the river following summer migration, and variation in fish appearance, suggesting that both Dolly Varden and Arctic are present in a river where traditionally only Arctic char have been found. My research evaluates the diversity in char in the Coppermine River, which will equip scientists and community members with tools to identify and restore critical habitats, ensuring the viability of the subsistence fishery.”

Thank you to graphic artist, MartinPM who worked with Spencer Weinstein and created three versions in EnglishFrench, and Inuinnaqtun.