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Morgan Seag, BA, MPhil

Morgan Seag, BA, MPhil

PhD Student, Gates Cambridge Scholar

Morgan studies scientific institutions, gender, and policy in Antarctica


Morgan's research interests center on science, policy, and social change in international spaces. In broad terms, she is interested in the human side of these shared spaces: how are they used? by whom? to what end? More specifically, her PhD research at SPRI examines scientific institutions in Antarctica, asking how they have evolved to become more gender inclusive over time.

Morgan became interested in the polar regions during the austral summers of 2011-12 and 2012-13, when she worked for the US Antarctic Program at McMurdo Station, Antarctica. Her PhD research also builds upon undergraduate training in political science at the University of Pennsylvania, as well as career experiences in science outreach and international education/arts consulting.

Her research is predicated on a belief that in order to increase diversity in both science and policy, we must improve our understanding of how institutions change to become more equitable, as well as the conditions under which institutions have claimed exemption from social progress in the past.


  • PhD in Geography/Polar Studies, University of Cambridge, expected 2019
  • MPhil in Geography/Polar Studies, with distinction, University of Cambridge, 2015
  • BA in Political Science (minor in African Studies), summa cum laude, University of Pennsylvania, 2008


Morgan's PhD research examines women's integration into Antarctic field science in the mid-twentieth century. Focusing on the US Antarctic Program (USAP) and the British Antarctic Survey (BAS) as case studies, this research interrogates the conditions that sustained exclusionary policies toward women and the processes that impelled women's eventual integration into Antarctic fieldwork. Her research pays special attention to the construction of extreme environments; the influence of social movements and legal structures in remote spaces; the role of internationalism in science; and the relationship between formal and informal processes of change.

Broad research interests include: Feminist theory; critical geopolitics; history and sociology of science; institutional change; environmental history; frontier spaces


Selected publications:

  • Bonetti, M. & Seag, M. (eds.) (2010). Through African Eyes: Conversations with the Directors. New York: African Film Festival, Inc.

External activities

  • Co-Convenor, Polar Social Sciences Workshop, 2016-present
  • Associate Editor, The Scholar (Gates Cambridge magazine) , 2016-present
  • Committee member, Learning for Purpose (Gates Cambridge), 2016-present