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Michaela Stith

Program Assistant, Polar Institute

Professional affiliation

Author of Welp: Climate Change & Arctic Identities

Full Biography

Ms. Stith is a lifelong Alaskan passionate about the Arctic and environmental justice. She organizes events at the Polar Institute, manages the scholarly publication Polar Perspectives, and produces the blog column Polar Points. Ms. Stith handles communication including @PolarInstitute on Twitter and the New Security Beat column Navigating the Poles. In May 2021, Ms. Stith published her debut travel memoir set Norway, Iceland and Alaska: Welp: Climate Change and Arctic Identities.

Before joining the Wilson Center she lived and worked in Tromsø, Norway as a Hart Leadership Fellow and, later, as an Associate at the Arctic Council Indigenous Peoples’ Secretariat. She provided assistance to Indigenous Peoples' organizations in their international policy work and supported events like the 6th Arctic Leaders' Summit. As a first generation college graduate from Duke University, Michaela earned Graduation with Distinction in Environmental Science & Policy for her thesis on Arctic cruise ship regulation.

Major Publications

Stith, Michaela (May 2020). “Defining Traditional Knowledge in the Arctic Council,” EU Horizon 2020 InterACT Working Package 9.

Arctic Council Indigenous Peoples’ Secretariat and UiT University Library (Sept 2019). “Ságastallamin: Telling the Story.”



Book cover for Welp: Climate Change and Arctic Identities

Welp: Climate Change and Arctic Identities

When author Michaela Stith left her home in Alaska to visit the Lower 48, she learned that many people think of the Arctic as an icy wasteland devoid of people and filled with polar bears. Welp: Climate Change and Arctic Identities challenges that misconception—by inviting you to witness a side of the Arctic few southerners ever get to see.

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