PLC 2018: Day 2, Afternoon Sessions

Blog post by Shannon Christoffersen

The afternoon session on Day 2 began with the keynote presentation ‘Arctic Media, Arctic Journalism: Lessons learnt from Barents Mediasphere Project’ by
Head of science communications Markku Heikkilä, Arctic Centre. Of note, Heikkilä pointed out the difference between journalism ‘in the Arctic’ and ‘of the Arctic,’ explaining that media in the Arctic tends to be of regional interest and operated in local languages whereas media of the Arctic is more global, predominantly in English, and has limited relevance to people living in Arctic areas. Information about the Barents Mediasphere Project can be found at

Following the keynote, PLC participants were loaded on to a bus, ostensibly to visit the Arktikum. However, conference organizer Susannah Parikka, had a surprise for us all. In fact, we would be making a stop first to have our group photo taken…with Santa Claus! We drove just outside of Rovaniemi to Santa’s office at the Arctic Circle where we were met by some very cheerful elves. Santa was lovely and conversed with participants in English, Swedish, and French! He also wore some pretty amazing striped socks. As soon as our photo is available, I will be sure to post it for everyone!

Next up was the visit to Arktikum ( where we were greeted with hot coffee, tea, and a variety of sweet and savoury pastries. They clearly know the way to our hearts. PLC members love a good tea. We were taken on a short tour that included: diorama displays of Rovaniemi before and after the city was burned during the 1944 Lapland War between Finland and Nazi Germany; an exhibit explaining the different ways of defining the Arctic; and some ‘hot stuff’ – an exhibit on Arctic mating that included a content warning. Thankfully, the Colloquy members were able to handle this risqué material. After the tour, we were given time to explore the Arktikum on our own, finishing the day up in this beautiful building.


Photo courtesy of Shannon Christoffersen.

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