Glacier Lab members Mark Carey, M Jackson, Alessandro Antonello, and former Lab member Jaclyn Rushing recently published a study on “Glaciers, Gender, and Science” in the peer-reviewed journal Progress in Human Geography. The journal Science recently profiled this article in an interview with Carey.
The concept of “feminist glaciology” is new to many people. It addresses the fact that, while women are more likely to be harmed or negatively affected by glacial melt than men, women’s voices are also less often heard in the context of glacier knowledge. Furthermore, the study shows that glaciology has been imbued historically (and up to the present) not only with many more men than women, but also with masculinist cultures of exploration, geopolitics, and domination. Credibility when it comes to glacier knowledge today is often still based on these masculinist undertones.
The article provides an overview of these issues, calling for a new approach to global environmental change research– a framework that considers gender dynamics in environmental (climate, glaciology, hydrology) knowledge as well as one that integrates the social sciences and humanities with natural sciences. The production of a more comprehensive knowledge base is critical to addressing changing environmental conditions worldwide, with the goal of more just and equitable adaptation to global change.