• Thrust-breakthrough of folds southwest of Galbraith Lake, central Brooks Range, Alaska

      Grischkowsky, Elizabeth A. (2002-05)
      Detailed mapping of a 32 square-kilometer area in the fold-and-thrust belt of the north-central Brooks Range indicates that fault-related folds in the Lisburne Limestone formed as detachment folds and were subsequently cut by thrust faults. Thrust faulting resulted in a duplex structure with a floor thrust in the Kayak Shale and a roof thrust in the Siksikpuk Formation. The linking thrusts of the duplex dip toward the hinterland while the floor and roof thrusts dip toward the foreland indicating that the duplex has been tilted by underlying structures. I constructed models for the sub-lisburne structure to account for the structural geometry observed in the study area. Duplexing of the Kanayut Conglomerate is the most likely cause of the forward tilt, but thickening of the Kayak Shale or deformation beneath the basal thrust of the Endicott Mountains allochthon may also contribute.
    • Thule Plant And Driftwood Use At Cape Espenberg, Alaska

      Crawford, Laura J.; Potter, Ben; Alix, Claire (2012)
      This thesis addresses the question of Thule plant and woody fuel use at Cape Espenberg, Alaska between approximately AD 1500 and 1700. The objective of this thesis is to determine how the Thule at Cape Espenberg were using various plant species, including edible plant species and fuelwood species. Few studies have been done on prehistoric Arctic plant use, and so this study intends to add to this nascent but growing field. By examining charcoal and macrofossil remains, this thesis is also intended to discover similarities and differences between the Thule and their modern Inupiat descendants in terms of plant and woody fuel use. Statistical tests and descriptive analyses indicate that plant foods contributed significant nutrition to the Thule diet at Cape Espenberg, that woody fuel was used heavily, and also actively conserved with the incorporation of alternative fuel sources such as bone and blubber. This exploratory study underscores the importance of plants in prehistoric Arctic economies, and the need for future research.
    • Thyroid hormone binding to brain nuclear extracts during smoltification in coho salmon

      Cheek, L. Michael (1991)
      Salmon complete a metamorphosis called smoltification prior to entering salt water. Increased thyroid activity, olfactory imprinting, and chemical and structural changes in the brain are known to occur at this time. This study was undertaken to determine if triiodothyronine (T$\sb3$) binding to brain nuclear extracts changes during smoltification. During this investigation serum thyroxine (T$\sb4$) concentrations increased three fold during smoltification coincident with changes in coloration and morphology and surged again during downstream migration to six times presmolt concentrations. Using ultrafiltration assays, homologous displacement experiments of KCl extracts of recovered brain cell nuclei indicated that maximal binding capacity increased during smoltification and down-stream migration. The increase in receptor concentration lagged the increase in serum thyroxine by one week. Dissociation constants increased during smolt transformation but declined abruptly during down-stream migration. However, dissociation constants did not change during smoltification if nuclear extracts had been previously incubated at room temperature to remove endogenous ligand. Dissociation rate increased significantly, coincident with the increase in receptor concentration measured by homologous displacement. The maximal probable percent occupancy of available receptors increased from 60% before to greater than 95% during the smolt transformation climax. These results provide evidence that thyroid hormone receptors participate in brain development and olfactory imprinting in smolting salmon.
    • Till deformation beneath Black Rapids Glacier, Alaska, and its implication on glacier motion

      Truffer, Martin; Harrison, W. D. (1999)
      The motion of a glacier is largely determined by the nature of its bed. The basal morphology and its reaction to the overlying ice mass have been subject to much speculation, because the glacier bed is usually difficult to access, and good field data are sparse. In spring 1997 a commercial wireline drill rig was set up on Black Rapids Glacier, Alaska, to extract cores of basal ice, subglacial till, and underlying bedrock. One of the boreholes was equipped with three tiltmeters to monitor till deformation, and a piezometer to record pore water pressure. The surface velocity and ice deformation in a borehole were also measured. The drill successfully reached bedrock twice after penetrating a till layer, some 5 to 7 m in thickness, confirming an earlier seismic interpretation. The till consisted of a sandy matrix containing clasts up to boulder size. Bedrock and till lithology indicated that all the drill holes were located to the north of the Denali Fault, a major tectonic boundary along which the glacier flows. The mean annual surface velocity of the glacier was 60 ma-1 , of which 20 to 30 ma-1 were ice deformation, leaving 30 to 40 ma-1 of basal motion. The majority of this basal motion occurred at a depth of more than 2 m in the till, contradicting previously held ideas about till deformation. Basal motion could occur as sliding of till over the underlying bedrock, or on a series of shear layers within the till. This finding has implications for the interpretation of the geologic record of former ice sheets, for geomorphology, and for glacier dynamics. The effect of a thick till layer on ice flow and on quantities observable at the glacier surface was calculated. These include velocity changes on secular, seasonal, and shorter time scales. A mechanism for uplift events and dye tracing responses was suggested. An easy surface observation that could serve to clearly distinguish a glacier underlain by till from the more traditional view of a glacier underlain by bedrock could not be identified.
    • Time and space scales of some oceanic and atmospheric parameters in the Gulf of Alaska

      Beegle, Cynthia Juyne (1986-05)
      Time series of monthly means up to 65 years long were examined to determine the time and spatial scales of variablity in the Gulf of Alaska. Sea level, sea level pressure (SLP), air temperature, fresh water discharge, sea surface temperature (SST) and the Southern Oscillation Index (SOI) are the variables chosen to gain insight into local and global responses in the gulf. This study reports four major results. 1) Sea level anomalies (variations from the annual cycle) are driven by wind and fresh water; temperature effects in sea level are not seen. 2) SST anomalies cannot be predicted from sea level data, but SLP in southeastern Alaska and air temperature in Seward may be useful indicators on a two to three month time scale. 3) On the whole, anomalies in coastal and interior Alaska weather occur together, with SLP 180° out of phase with air temperature and precipitation. Using empirical orthogonal functions, the Southeast and Southcoast district can be separated. 4) A statistically significant SOI signal is seen is both SLP (p>0.995, Seward) and sea level (p>0.995) records.
    • Time synchronization and system support for energy efficient wireless sensor networks

      Lewis, Oldrine George (2007-08)
      This thesis presents a design of a Wireless Sensor Network (WSN) and the implementation of an original time synchronization algorithm. The complete system support for energy efficient WSNs was developed. The new time synchronization algorithm called Sliding Clock Synchronization employs a simple, yet very effective algorithm to compensate for static and dynamic drifts in the frequencies of crystal oscillators used in the WSN nodes. As power is a very scarce and critical resource in most WSN s, a tight synchronization algorithm can reduce power consumption thereby increasing the life of a WSN. An accurate and reliable synchronization algorithm also enables the WSN to be used for applications that require a tight synchronization for data correlation. A hardware and software interface for an embedded web server has been provided so that the WSN can be monitored and controlled over the Internet. An interface for a GPS module enables the network to incorporate GPS time stamps in recording network events. A sensor node emulator has been developed so that a single node can emulate multiple nodes without additional hardware, thus providing a simple and cost, effective means to test the network performance with large number of nodes.
    • Time-dependent electron transport and optical emissions in the aurora

      Peticolas, Laura Marie; Lummerzheim, Dirk (2000)
      This thesis presents the first time-dependent transport model of auroral electrons. The evolution of the spherical electron intensity in phase space is studied for a variety of incident electron intensities. It is shown that the secondary electrons with energies <10 eV and at altitudes >150 km can take over 300 ms to reach steady state in phase space. Since there are bright optical emissions in this region, such a time dependence in the auroral electrons is important. The emissions of N2(2PG) 3371 A and <math> <f> <rm>N<sup>+</sup><inf>2</inf></rm></f> </math> (1NG) 4278 A are studied for time-varying electron pulses to show for the first time that this ratio will change until the secondary electrons reach steady state in the ionosphere. The way in which the 3371A/4278A ratio changes with time-varying precipitation depends on the precipitating electron spectra. The changes in the emission ratio can be used to learn more about the auroral acceleration region and the role of the ionosphere in auroral emissions. Field-aligned bursts (FABs), often observed in electron spectra of instruments flying over flickering aurora, are modeled with the time-dependent transport model. How the ionosphere modifies these electrons is shown. The 3371 and 4278 A emissions of flickering FABs are modeled to study the optical effects of modulated electron intensities in time. A study of 4278 A emissions for electron source regions from 630 to 4,000 km are studied along with frequency variations from 5 to 100 Hz. This study shows that the percent variation of the maximum to the minimum column brightness is less for higher frequencies and more distant source regions. It is shown that with an accurate time-dependent transport calculation and 4278 A emission observations of flickering aurora it should be possible to deduce the source altitude of the modulated electrons creating the optical flickering.
    • Timing of breeding and reproductive success in a subarctic population of yellow warblers (Dendroica petechia)

      Sowl, Kristine Marie (2003-12)
      Detailed knowledge of reproductive rates is necessary for understanding population dynamics, but this information is lacking for many populations of migratory songbirds. I examined breeding chronology and reproductive success of Yellow Warblers (Dendroica petechia) breeding in east central Alaska in 1997-2000. Yellow Warblers nested in both spruce forest and willow shrub habitats, but breeding density and nest success were greater in shrub habitat. Annual productivity was influenced by the number of breeding attempts per female, clutch size, success of individual eggs or nestlings, and nest success. Mean clutch size was larger than in lower latitude populations and decreased seasonally. The abbreviated breeding season limited opportunities for replacing lost clutches or broods, but enough females replaced failed nests to increase annual productivity by 0.5 fledglings per female, on average. Nest predation was likely the primary cause of nest failures and was greater on the edge between willow shrub and spruce forest than within the interior of those habitats. Timing of breeding was consistent in three years of the study, but early laying in 1998, which coincided with warmer air temperatures, effectively extended the breeding season. Extremely low nest success lowered annual productivity in 1998, despite the extended breeding season.
    • The Tingmiukpuk site (KIR-273): a prehistoric site along the Killik River, Alaska

      Robertson, Aaron C. (2002-05)
      Tingmiukpuk (KIR-273), a prehistoric archaeological site, lies in a dune field on the east bank of the Killik River in Gates of the Arctic National Park and Preserve. The site consists of several surface scatters of cultural material on and around three large dune prominences. Field research was conducted during the summers of 1990, 1991, 1993, and 1999. Diagnostic artifacts and dates on surface faunal material suggest the presence of two archaeological components: one belonging to the American Paleoarctic tradition, and one to the Arctic Small Tool tradition. Artifacts and faunal material suggest that the site was used for processing caribou (including breaking bones for marrow and grease extraction). A variety of lithic tools associated with the hunting and processing of caribou were recorded, but most were manufactured off-site. The manufacturing of expedient tools (scrapers and utilized flakes), blades, and microblades was the primary lithic production activity at the site.
    • Tiny robots in our pockets: a critical exploration of podcasts

      Dreasler, Quinn Elizabeth; Coffman, Chris; Stanley, Sarah; Harney, Eileen (2015-05)
      This project is an exploration of the audio platform of podcasting. It is in three parts. The first part is an initial introduction to the medium of podcasting and an introduction to a critical theory of media studies in regard to popular culture. The second part is an exploration of the educational and academic applications of podcasting as well as an examination of aural learning as an important cultural mode of discourse. There are pedagogical implications and examples of utilizing both popular culture and podcasting in the classroom. The third part is a critical examination of selected podcasts that feature discussions of popular culture and how those discussions fit into the critical modes, genres and discourses outlined in the first two parts of this project. This discussion focuses mostly on the critical examination of science fiction films in podcasting. There is a conclusion that wraps up the main ideas and critical theories discussed in the project as well as an epilogue that addresses concerns raised at the defense of this project regarding pedagogy and accessibility. This is the transcript of this project. The actual thesis artifact is a series of three podcasts that are available through the University of Alaska Fairbanks Graduate School Archive and through the website SoundCloud. (https://soundcloud.com/quinn-dreasler/sets/quinns-thesis)
    • Tire chain damage on bridge deck wearing surfaces

      Muench, Wilhelm; Hulsey, J. Leroy; Barnes, David L.; Perkins, Robert A. (2017-12)
      A light weight, durable, and damage-resistant material is needed as a wearing surface replacement for a two-lane bridge deck that is on a 6% grade. The wearing surface to be replaced is 9.2-m wide and is attached to an orthotropic closed cell steel deck that supported by two 155.9-cm wide by 414.0-cm deep steel box girders. This is a 699.5-m long six span bridge over the Yukon River located near the Arctic Circle on the gravel road section of the Dalton Highway. The bridge is located approximately 80 km north of Fairbanks, Alaska. The structure was designed in the early 1970's with a 127-mm two-layer timber deck wearing surface. Since then, the timber deck wearing surface has been replaced in 1981, 1992, 1999, and 2007. Future decking material may be composites. Factors to be considered in the selection of a new decking material include: thermal cracking, abrasion, durability, flexural strain, traction, weight, and fastening methods to the steel deck. Moreover, the material must retain its structural properties in temperatures that range from -50C to 40C. For a majority of the year, the driving surface is covered with ice and snow. Because of the steep grade, trucks typically use tire chains during the winter. These tire chains damage the current timber wearing surface and are a major factor in its deterioration. Further, the more traffic the less traction. Owing to the damage tire chains cause on the current timber wearing surface, other wearing surface materials are being considered. The purpose of this project was to evaluate possible wearing surface in the laboratory for punching shear, structural strain, modulus, traction, and resistance to tire chains. In this paper, preliminary test results for traction, and wear by tire chains are presented. This is an updated version of a paper that was first presented at ISCORD 2007, Proceedings of the 8th International Symposium on Cold Region Development, Tampere, Finland, September 25-27, 2007, with co-author, J. Leroy Hulsey.
    • To freeze or not to freeze: that is the question: a look at freezeback landfills and final cover designs

      Durand, Sarah; Perkins, Robert; Aggarwal, Srijan; Barnes, David (2019-12)
      Freezeback landfills are an exciting concept but challenging in execution. There is not a single variable that leads to the success of a freezeback landfills but multiple variables in balance with each other that allow for freezeback to occur. Freezeback landfills should be engineered to the site-specific environment at the initial design stage for a better chance of success rather than following the generalized regulatory requirements. This project looked at three freezeback landfills as case studies and evaluated the final cover design of the first two in identifying parameters that lead to success in reaching and maintaining freezeback status. The parameters and research on permafrost are then applied to the third case study in a series of recommendations for consideration when designing a final cover strategy.
    • To pup or not to pup? Using physiology and dive behavior to answer the Weddell Seal's overwinter question

      Shero, Michelle R.; Mellish, Jo-Ann; Burns, Jennifer; Hardy, Sarah; Costa, Daniel; Buck, C. Loren (2015-08)
      Female Weddell seals (Leptonychotes weddellii) haul-out on the fast-ice surrounding the Antarctic continent in October and November each year to give birth to and nurse their pups. Breeding follows directly after weaning (December) and the annual molt begins in January-February. Animals reduce foraging efforts during the lactation and molting periods, but very little is known regarding the influence of this reduced activity on physiological condition. After a period of embryonic diapause, the annual molt coincides with embryo attachment and the start of active gestation. Consequently, female physiological condition at this time may influence reproductive success the following year. Overall female health and the ability to forage successfully throughout the gestation period (austral winter) may impact the likelihood that a pregnancy is brought to term. Therefore, this study tested whether overwinter changes in Weddell seal physiology and foraging efforts are reflected in reproductive outcomes the following year (i.e., to answer the over winter question of "to pup or not to pup?"). From 2010-2012, 100 (January-February: n = 53; October-November: n = 47) adult female Weddell seals were captured in Erebus Bay, Antarctica to assess overwinter changes in physiological condition and/or dive behavior that may be associated with reproductive success. Morphometric measurements and isotopic dilution procedures revealed that female Weddell seals gain ~10-15% of their body mass across the winter period, primarily in the form of blubber and lipid mass. The proportion of mass and lipid gain was similar regardless of whether females returned the following year and successfully gave birth, or did not produce a pup. Further, the amount of mass and energy acquired across gestation in the Weddell seal was markedly less than previously reported for other phocid species. Despite changes in activity patterns and body composition, Weddell seals maintained blood hemoglobin and muscle myoglobin concentrations across the winter. Therefore, Weddell seal total body oxygen stores and calculated aerobic dive limit (cADL) were conserved. This ensures that females have the physiological capabilities to effectively forage directly following the annual molt when they are at their leanest and must regain body mass and lipid stores. Although aerobic capacities did not change, dive effort varied considerably throughout the austral winter. Proxies of dive effort (duration, depth, %dives > cADL) were highest just after the molt (January-February) and just prior to the subsequent pupping season (August-September). Additionally, the proportion of each day spent diving increased mid-winter. Females that were observed the following year with a pup significantly increased all indices of foraging effort during the austral winter as compared to females that returned without a pup. This study is the first to identify and measure differences in dive efforts due to reproductive status, and indicates that successful reproduction is associated with greater foraging effort.
    • Tobacco use and cessation: What matters to Southeast Alaska Native young adults?

      Anderson, Kathryn; Johnson, Rhonda; Lopez, Ellen; Bryant, Carol; Garcia, Gabriel; Lardon, Cecile; Skewes, Monica (2013-12)
      Background: The smoking rate among young Alaska Native adults (ages 19-29) in Southeast Alaska is 70% as compared to the statewide adult smoking rate of 21%, the Alaska Native adult rate of 41%, and the overall young adult rate of 32%. Southeast Alaska Regional Health Consortium (SEARHC), the non-profit tribal health consortium serving Southeast Alaska, commissioned this research to inform development of a young adult-specific, social marketing-based smoking cessation intervention. Methods: Using purposive sampling, 23 individuals were recruited for five focus groups and four individual interviews in Juneau, Alaska. Following a social marketing framework, the research assessed participant beliefs about the benefits and negative impacts of smoking, barriers to quitting, and preferred quit support methods, as well as participant reactions to particular anti-smoking advertisements and quit support methods. Results: Almost all participants reported an interest in quitting smoking. Stress relief, boredom relief, relaxation, and oral satisfaction were the main benefits of smoking. Downsides to smoking included negative short-term health impacts, negative impacts on children in the extended family, and negative cosmetic impacts. Barriers to quitting included loss of listed benefits, addiction and habit, fatalism, and the high prevalence of smoking among family and friends. The preferred method of quitting was cold turkey (unassisted quitting), with very few participants reporting use of counseling or pharmacotherapy. Participants preferred high emotional level anti-smoking advertisements with either strongly negative emotional valence (e.g., fear and disgust) or strongly positive emotional valence (e.g., joy, happiness). Reaction to quit support methods was most favorable to texting support and a smart phone app, and most negative toward a smart phone video game. Reaction to counseling was strongly supportive among those who had tried it and largely but not totally negative among those who had not. Conclusion: Young Alaska Native adults in Juneau who smoke are interested in quitting but prefer cold turkey to counseling and pharmacotherapy. They are more concerned about short-term than long-term health impacts, and they are sensitive to the impact of smoking on their appearance and on children in their extended family. Findings formed a foundation for a proposed social-marketing based intervention.
    • Tomo ni manabu: task-based language teaching in a high school English class in Japan

      Holland, Yoshie; Siekmann, Sabine; Murakami, Chisato; Martelle, Wendy (2019-08)
      Task-based language teaching is a method that emerged in the field of second language acquisition in the U.S. Task-based language teaching facilitates language learning in context. However, there are few examples of research that investigate the applicability of task-based language teaching in classrooms in Japan where constraints such as big class size, college entrance exams, and designated textbooks that follow the national curriculum guidelines are factors. This study investigates the response of a Japanese teacher and 41 high school students in Japan, the students' language development as well as the suitability of task-based language teaching in classrooms in Japan. It also offers some guidance to make task-based language teaching more easily applicable to classrooms in Japan. This mixed method study involved a series of semi-structured interviews with a high school teacher in Japan, class observations of the task-based language teaching lessons, and a pre-test and post-test with surveys for the students. The study found out that the teacher expressed tensions between his current teaching context at that time and the task-based language teaching lesson plan. However, the teacher finished the lesson with a positive attitude towards task-based language teaching. Also, the students learned the grammar focus from the task-based language teaching lesson even though the lesson was not focused on the grammar as much as the traditional teaching. Overall, task-based language teaching in the teaching context worked well where the students worked in groups since it facilitated learning among students. This study also suggests that the teacher and his students adopted task-based language teaching positively and that the specific approach of task-supported language teaching is likely to be most suitable in this teaching context.
    • Toolstone procurement in middle-late Holocene in the Kodiak archipelago and the Alaska Peninsula

      Rains, Devon; Potter, Ben; Severin, Ken; Rasic, Jeffrey; Irish, Joel (2014-12)
      The Norton tradition (2300-950 BP) in the Alaska Peninsula and the Late Kachemak phase (2700-900 BP) in Kodiak are distinct cultural traditions yet contain some similarities in lithic assemblages and house form, suggesting some contact or influence occurred. The subsequent Koniag tradition (900-200 BP) is present in both the Alaska Peninsula and Kodiak, indicating direct influence or migration. While the Koniag tradition is found in sites located throughout the North Pacific region, the Koniag tradition in Kodiak is characterized by changes in social climate and subsistence strategies including greater warfare/raiding and resource consolidation. In order to obtain these resources, Koniag populations living in Kodiak may have traveled farther distances than previous populations. In contrast, Alaska Peninsula populations did not experience significantly different subsistence strategies over time and therefore would not need to travel as far as Kodiak populations or significantly alter subsistence patterns. Determining the probable origins of toolstone materials in late prehistoric sites can reveal changes in the ways people in this region obtained their resources and give a more comprehensive understanding of the degree to which the Koniag lifestyle differed from the preceding cultural traditions in the region. Due to the eruptive history in the Alaska Peninsula, the presence of volcanic toolstone in Kodiak sites, and the close proximity between the two locations, central Alaska Peninsula and Kodiak sites are optimally located in order to determine possible changes in the direction where volcanic toolstone originated. This thesis explored differences between volcanic toolstone procurement locations in late prehistoric sites on the Kodiak Archipelago and the central Alaska Peninsula by comparing samples according to size and abundance of tool types, site location, cultural affiliation, and time periods using element values obtained from x-ray fluorescence (XRF) technology. Results show possible geographic boundaries of toolstone containing similar element values using Alaska Peninsula samples, which were subsequently compared with Kodiak samples. Data presented in this thesis shows the geographic range of likely toolstone procurement locations increased over time in Kodiak sites, while Alaska Peninsula sites contain evidence that toolstone remained locally procured over time.
    • Toothed whale interactions with longline fisheries in Alaska

      Peterson, Megan J.; Carothers, Courtney; Mueter, Franz; Matkin, Craig; Criddle, Keith (2014-05)
      Killer whale (Orcinus orca) and sperm whale (Physeter macrocephalus) depredation occurs when whales damage or remove fish caught on longline gear. This project used a mixed methods approach incorporating Generalized Linear and Additive Modeling techniques and social research methods, such as semi-directed interviews and written questionnaires, to evaluate: 1) spatio-temporal depredation trends, 2) depredation effects on groundfish catch rates, and 3) socio-economic implications of depredation avoidance and changing fishing practices due to whale interactions. The occurrence of killer whale depredation varied by target species and area based on National Marine Fisheries Service longline survey data and observer commercial fishery data collected from 1998 to 2012 in the Bering Sea, Aleutian Islands, and Western Gulf of Alaska. The percentage of commercial fishery sets affected by killer whales was highest in Bering Sea fisheries for: sablefish (Anoplopomafimbria; 21.4%), Greenland turbot (Reinhardtius hippoglossoides; 9.9%), and Pacific halibut (Hippogolossus stenolepis; 6.9%). Killer whale depredation was more common on the standardized longline survey (9.2-34.6% skates impacted) than the commercial sablefish fishery (1.0-21.4% sets impacted) in all three management areas. Catch reductions were consistent across data sets. Average commercial fleet catch reductions ranged from 35-69% for sablefish, Pacific halibut and Greenland turbot (p<0.001); survey catch reductions ranged from 51-73% (p<0.001). Sablefish catch per unit effort, gear haul time and location significantly impacted the proportion of sets depredated. Fishermen reported changing their fishing practices in response to depredating whales by soaking gear longer to "wait the whales out" or moving to different fishing sites. These avoidance measures resulted in increased operation costs and opportunity costs in lost time. In a follow-up analysis based on data collected by fishermen in 2011 and 2012, it was found that killer whale depredation avoidance measures resulted in an average additional cost of $494 per vessel-day for fuel and crew food. Opportunity costs of time lost by fishermen averaged $486 per additional vessel-day on the grounds. These results provide insight into the potential impacts of whale depredation on fish stock abundance indices and commercially important fisheries in Alaska and will inform future research on apex predator-fisheries interactions.
    • A total environment of change: exploring social-ecological shifts in subsistence fisheries in Noatak and Selawik, Alaska

      Moerlein, Katie J. (2012-05)
      Arctic ecosystems are undergoing rapid changes as a result of global climate change, with significant implications for the livelihoods of arctic peoples. In this thesis, I use ethnographic research methods to detail prominent environmental changes observed and experienced over the past few decades and to document the impact of these changes on subsistence fishing practices in the Inupiaq communities of Noatak and Selawik in northwestern Alaska. Using in-depth key informant interviews, participant observation, and cultural consensus analysis, I explore local knowledge and perceptions of climate change and other pronounced changes facing the communities of Noatak and Selawik. I find consistent agreement about a range of perceived environmental changes affecting subsistence fisheries in this region, including lower river water levels, decreasing abundances of particular fish species, increasingly unpredictable weather conditions, and increasing presence of beaver, which affect local waterways and fisheries. These observations of environmental changes are not perceived as isolated phenomena, but are experienced in the context of accompanying social changes that are continually reshaping rural Alaska communities and subsistence economies. Consequently, in order to properly assess and understand the impacts of climate change on the subsistence practices in arctic communities, we must also consider the total environment of change that is dramatically shaping the relationship between people, communities, and their surrounding environments.
    • Tourism development and public policy: perceptions of the Chuukese community

      Perez, Gerald San Agustin; Baek, Jungho; Schumann, Fred; Caroll, Jennifer; Walter, Ansito (2019-05)
      Tourism is a widely used tool for economic development in small insular communities. This mixed methods study examines factors that influence residents' perceptions toward tourism development in Chuuk and the relevance of "complexity theory" in describing the island's stage of development. Empirical evidence and data triangulation corroborate general support for tourism development and sensitivity to cultural impacts, economic impacts, social impacts, environmental impacts, local control and sustainability. Economic and cultural impacts were the strongest factors influencing perceptions and are most significant to sustainable development and destination development. This reflects residents' beliefs that the island will benefit from tourism because of perceived improvements in the economy, infrastructure, tourist facilities and expanded social amenities. It also reflects residents' expectations for long term planning, managed growth, and laws to protect the environment. Some differences and similarities are noted between sampled residents living in Chuuk and Guam. This study is the first of its kind in an isolated region lacking scholarship literature on tourism. As such, basic information gathered is a wellspring, for further research into issues of social justice using a more sequential transformative framework.
    • Touristic encounters of an intercultural kind: communication between volunteers and international visitors at a visitors information center

      Peterson, Sherrill Lea (2004-05)
      This qualitative research examined the lived experience of volunteers in providing information to international travelers at a Visitors Information Center. The research focused on intercultural communication during these touristic encounters. Interpersonal communication and meaning engagement practices between volunteer information providers and international visitors were examined from a narrative theoretical perspective. Narratives of six volunteer information providers were gathered using conversational interviews and analyzed using the method of thematic analysis. Six themes emerged from volunteers' narratives of their experience: independent/package tour travelers, visitors' expectations, information as product/process, foreign language skills, adaptability and accommodation, and public inebriation of homeless local residents. Contrary to expectations, volunteers reported that the experience of providing information for international visitors was very little different from providing information to visitors with cultural patterns of communication similar to their own. Several explanations are offered for the apparent absence of difficulties in providing information to international visitors. The surprising finding warrants further research.