International Small Islands Studies Association

Welcome to ISISA

ISISA is a voluntary, non-profit and independent organisation. Our objectives are to study islands on their own terms, and to encourage free scholarly discussion on small island related matters such as islandness, smallness, insularity, dependency, resource management and environment, and the nature of island life.


ISISA Conferences

Islands of the World XVII: Sharing Lessons, Sharing Stories

(Virtual) Host: Memorial University, St John's, Newfoundland, Canada

June 14-18, 2021: 105 Abstracts received and accepted. Details here

Recording of Opening Session (with Dr Rob Greenwood, Dr Godfrey Baldacchino, novelist Michael Crummey and moderator Dr Bojan Furst):


First ISISA Global Island Studies Webinar: June 2020

The first ISISA Global Island Studies Webinar (GISW) ran non-stop on Wednesday June 24, 2020 for 31 hours.

ISISA thanks the Harris Centre at Memorial University of Newfoundland (MUN), Canada, for providing the IT infrastructure and support to make this webinar possible. Programme of Event (With Multiple Time Zones as reference) is available hereBook of Abstracts for all 62 presentations is available here (as pdf). There were 220 unique viewers during GISW-1.


Islands of the World XVI: For an Island Sense of Place

Leeuwarden and Terschelling, Frisian Islands, The Netherlands
June 10-14, 2018

Full Conference Programme and Abstracts

Islands of the World XV
Small Island Communities: Models for Global Survival
Kangaroo Island, South Australia, Australia
2 – 7 July 2017

Islands of the World XIV (with RETI: Excellence Network of Island Universities)
Niss(i)ology and Utopia: Back to the Roots of Island Studies
University of the Aegean
Mytilini, Lesvos Island, Greece
23 – 27 May 2016

Opening Evening Programme - Conference Poster - Full Conference Programme


ISISA Publications

Island Studies Journal   Latest ISISA Newsletter


Islands and the CoronaVirus pandemic: Latest Update by Iain Orr:  5 May 2021 here

Statistical Table from the above document is available as a stand-alone Excel Spreadsheet (Thanks to Bruce G. Potter)

- updated as at 5 May 2021 here

(Comments are welcomed by the author at:


SMILO Report on Island Networks and Organisations available here.


COVID-19 Island Insights Series led by the Strathclyde Centre for Environmental Law and Governance

and the University of Prince Edward Island's Institute of Island Studies in collaboration with Island Innovation: here



Island Events

ISISA - 18th 'Islands of the World' Conference - Zadar and area, Croatia - 13-17 June 2022.

ISISA proudly announces that the University of Zadar will host the 18th Islands of the World Conference: 13-17 June 2022, on the theme: Islands: Nature and Culture. Sub-themes will cover the many aspects of natural and cultural life on islands. We invite scientists, scholars and students of islands and island studies from all different fields of knowledge, research, inquiry and policy to participate. 

ALL DETAILS on Conference Web Site: -


Accepting bids to host 19th 'Islands of the World' Conference in 2024 - Location in the Indian or Pacific Ocean is preferred.

Accepting bids to host 20th 'Islands of the World' Conference in 2026.

Island News

(11 January 2020) - Kangaroo Island, Australia, devastated by bushfires: Island solidarity expressed

The recent bushfires in Australia have devastated Kangaroo Island and laid waste to the formerly lush greenery. The small island is home to about 4,700 islanders and is considered a ‘Noah’s Ark’ for animals like the estimated 25,000 koalas that perished in the fires. Since the outbreak of the disaster about one-third of the island has been destroyed, houses and farms, forest and livestock and wildlife gone, and two lives lost...

With an area of 4,405km2, Kangaroo Island is small, with an economy based on agriculture and tourism. In July 2017, the island’s community hosted ISISA 15th Islands of the World Conference and gave the international island studies community a warm welcome.

With this critical time in mind, the Executive of the International Small Islands Studies Association (ISISA) expresses its solidarity with all fellow Kangaroo islanders. Our hearts go out to all the suffering inhabitants - human and fauna - of Kangaroo Island. Meanwhile, we are confident that the strong sense of community and deep reservoirs of resilience will rise to the occasion and help you cope as best you can, while looking forward to better days.

Please know your island family from around the globe supports you in your loss, but also in your resilience.

ISISA has donated $1,000 to the Children Bushfire Fund on KI, in support of children and their families displaced by the fires.

Letter of Thanks for Donors from Kangaroo Island, dated 18 May 2020, available here.

The Executive of ISISA

 ISISA e-mail group