Chie Sakakibara

Dr. Chie Sakakibara, Assistant Professor
355 Rankin Science West
(828) 262-7442

Ph.D., Geography, University of Oklahoma, Norman, 2007
Post-Doctoral Research Fellow, The Earth Institute, Columbia University, New York, NY 2008-2010
M.A., Art History, University of Oklahoma, Norman, 2002
B.A., British & American Studies, Aichi Prefectural University, Japan, 2001
B.A., Native American Studies (Anthropology Minor), University of Oklahoma, Norman, 2000
  Curriculum Vitae   Research Interests:

Dr. Sakakibara is a cultural geographer interested in global indigenous studies and human-environment relations. Her current research focuses on global warming and its influence on traditional relationships with the bowhead whale (Balaena mysticetus) in the Alaskan Arctic, particularly among the indigenous Iñupiaq people who call themselves the “People of the Whales.” In addition to her own research, she collaborates with the Center for Ethnomusicology at Columbia University in the City of New York for their community-partnered Iñupiaq music heritage repatriation project ( She also explores climate change and cultural survival among the islanders of the Azores, Autonomous Region of Portugal in the northern Atlantic.


GHY 1020      World Regional Geography

GHY 1040      Human Geography

GHY 3531      Native Peoples of North America   Publications:

Sakakibara, Chie.
2012. Kiavallakkikput Aġviq (Into the Whaling Cycle): Cetaceousness and Climate Change among the Iñupiat of Arctic Alaska (under contract with University of Arizona Press).

Sakakibara, Chie.
2010. “Kiavallakkikput Aġviq (Into the Whaling Cycle): Cetaceousness and Climate Change among the Iñupiat of Arctic Alaska.” Annals of the Association of American Geographers 100 (4): 1003-1012.

Sakakibara, Chie.
2009. “ ‘No Whale, No Music’: Contemporary Iñupiaq Drumming and Global Warming.” Polar Record 45 (4): 289-303.

Sakakibara, Chie.
2008. “ ‘Our Home is Drowning’: Iñupiat Storytelling and Climate Change in Point Hope, Alaska.” The Geographical Review 98 (4): 456-478.

Fox, Aaron A. & Chie Sakakibara.
2008. “Bringing the Songs Home: Columbia University Begins Musical Heritage Repatriation Project in the North Slope.” Center for Ethnomusicology at Columbia University and the Barrow Arctic Science Consortium (BASC) .

Sakakibara, Chie.
2005. “The Whale Harvest Brings Many People Together.” The Arctic Sounder 19 (44): 12-13.

Book Review
Sakakibara, Chie.
2010. Nuussuarmiut—Hunting Families on the Big Headland: Demography, Subsistence and Material Culture in Nuussuaq, Upernavik, Northwest Greenland, by Keld Hansen. Commission for Scientific Research in Greenland, 2008. Polar Record 46 (4): 382.