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Dr. Hitchins was born in Glasgow, Scotland, and brought up in southern England. She received her BSc in Social Sciences from the University of Southampton, UK; her MA in Political Behaviour, and her PhD in Government from the University of Essex, UK. Her first academic appointment, while completing PhD research, was at University of Ghana, Legon, West Africa. Subsequently, Dr. Hitchins had a 30 year career with Department of Political Science, University of Alaska Anchorage, rising from Assistant Professor to Associate and then Full Professor.
Dr. Hitchins specializes in Comparative Politics and International Relations. She has served several terms as Chair of the Political Science Department, and also Director of International Studies at UAA, and was the founding director of UAA’s Canadian and North Pacific Studies Programs. Dr. Hitchins has conducted research in China, Japan and the Koreas as well as in Canada, the Russian Far East and the Arctic. Since 1985, Dr. Hitchins has served as the British Honorary Consul for Alaska. She was honoured by Queen Elizabeth II with the Member of British Empire (MBE) award in 2005, and was inducted into the Alaska Women’s Hall of Fame 2013.
Dr. Hitchins is currently working on developing a full-scale international Model Arctic Council to be held at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, sponsored by UAF and the University of the Arctic, and included in the US Public Diplomacy priority for the US Presidency of the Arctic Council.
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