WINGS WorldQuest Flag Carriers are women leading original field research or documentation that focuses on investigating questions about the nature of our world and advancing conservation efforts on land, air and water through science and advocacy. 

As part of their expeditions, all accepted Flag Carriers plan to write reports, make films, or otherwise formally share information about the findings and discoveries with the scientific community and the public. WINGS WorldQuest Flag Carriers are not associated with tourist trips or paying participants on tours. 

WINGS Flag Carriers must submit a formal report, complete with high resolution images, to WINGS so that the expedition findings can be shared with the greater public. These reports are posted on the WINGS website and published elsewhere as appropriate. 

WINGS is not accepting unsolicited applications. If you meet the above criteria and are interested in finding out more about the program, please email us at info@wingsworldquest.org.  

Check out our interactive map to see everywhere the Flag Carriers have explored.


Sunniva Sorby: Hearts in the Ice

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Our newest Flag Carrier is Sunniva Sorby, who, along with Hilde Fålun Strøm, will embark on a 9-month expedition to spend the winter in the High Arctic of Svalbard, Norway.

They will live in a trapper's hut with no running water or electricity, and in complete darkness for 90 days. They plan to record and broadcast extreme climate change events as they happen, in real time. The expedition will take place from September 2019 through May 2020. Sorby and Strøm will host a live stream call with WINGS during their expedition.




Folklore and Conservation in Siberut, Mentawai Islands, Indonesia

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Filmmaker Allison Hanes will carry the WINGS Flag to the Mentawai Islands of Indonesia. She is scouting locations for a 90 minute feature film about the shamans of Siberut and the Mentawai gibbons, local primates that are known for their singing. With the One Health Productions team, she plans to also create a virtual reality short and a traveling multimedia exhibit using gibbon song and indigenous knowledge to showcase the connections between humans, other species and their environment.


April Burt: The Aldabra Clean Up Project

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Plastic pollution is having devastating effects on the Aldabra Atoll World Heritage Site and the local wildlife. Conservation biologist April Burtwas was awarded a WINGS WorldQuest Flag Carrier grant for an expedition to clean up the plastic. She will lead a team consisting of six Oxford graduates and six young Seychellois conservationists.

Among their goals are to remove more than 200 tons of plastic from the Aldabra coast and to develop mitigation strategies to help prevent more plastic pollution. The team will leave in February 2019 and return in March. 

READ MORE ON THE BLOG >>


Janey McGill, Oman: Her Faces of Change

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Along with a team of Anglo-Omani women, Janey McGill will carry the WINGS flag across 1,000 km of Oman’s Rub’ Al Khali, a desert in the Arabian Peninsula that spans four countries.

As much as it is a physical journey, the trek also offers an opportunity for the women to address their cultural differences with the goal of challenging stereotypes. Her goal is to encourage understanding, acceptance and respect for cultural and gender differences and identities.

“WINGS offers a platform for us to be heard; women who have dreams and aspirations for a great understanding of the world and the education of the people that occupy it,” Janey said. “To carry the WINGS flag would go a long way in helping me to communicate my message to a wider and engaged audience.”

READ THE FLAG REPORT HERE >>

 

Sefra Alexandra: The Taro Tales

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Sefra Alexandra, also known as the "Seed Huntress," spent two months in Fiji with the 2018 Genebank Impacts Fellowship program.

She worked in the field gathering stories about how seeds that had been housed in a seed bank were redistributed after the Taro Leaf Blight epidemic in Samoa in 1993, helping to maintain taro as a staple food crop.

She created an impact assessment that highlights the importance of safeguarding the global diversity of seeds.

READ THE FLAG REPORT HERE >>


Gaelin Rosenwaks: Coral Resilience in the Face of Climate Change 

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Marine scientist, explorer and filmmaker Gaelin Rosenwaks went on an expedition in the Republic of Palau, an island nation in Oceania, to study how local coral reefs and their symbiotic algae have adapted to conditions that are similar to the predicted global ocean conditions the entire region is expected to face in the future.

She and a team studied the relationships between corals and their algae in two distrinct reef systems with the hope of revealing how some corals have adapted to increasing and unstable water temperatures.

Rosenwaks' goal is to understand the broad impacts of climate change on our ocean ecosystems and how nature is responding to these rapid changes to our planet.

READ THE FLAG REPORT HERE >>


 Women's Euro-Arabian North Pole Expedition 2018

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The Women’s Euro-Arabian North Pole Expedition 2018 is an international team of women from Europe and the Middle East who successfully skied to the North Pole. The expedition was conceived and led by Felicity Aston, a 2009 WINGS WorldQuest Fellow and the first woman to ski across Antarctica alone. 

The goal of the expedition was to complete a great physical journey while fostering culture understanding among women from the two regions, according to Aston. The team reached the North Pole on April 21. 

READ THE FLAG REPORT HERE >>


Laly Lichtenfeld: The Women's Beekeeping Initiative

Laly Lichtenfeld is the co-founder of African People & Wildlife, an environmental conservation organization in Tanzania. Through the Women’s Beekeeping Initiative, the organization works with 950 women, many of whom are part of the Maasai Tribe, to help them develop entrepreneurial skills.

After completing entrepreneurship training, participants are eligible for microgrants to launch their own individual beekeeping businesses. By selling local wild honey, the women develop revenue streams which they can use to support their families, send their children to school, invest in health care and reduce their families' environmental impact. 

The women also support each other through mentorship and knowledge-sharing. 

READ THE FLAG REPORT HERE >> 

 

WINGS WORLDQUEST FLAG CARRIER MAP

Use our interactive map below to roam the world, and see where our Explorers have visited.


Flag Expedition Archive

Below is a partial listing of expeditions with links to WINGS WorldQuest flag reports. The names of flag carriers who are WINGS Fellows contain profile links.

Reports by Region:

 

Asia

India
Studying the Habitat of the Greater One-Horned Rhino in West Bengal, Gitanjali Banerjee, 2006

Eastern Tibet
Documenting Flora on the Tibetan Plateau, Diane Agaki, 2007

Western China
Cycling the Silk Road: On the Trail of Marco PoloKate Harris, 2007

Altai Mountains
Expedition to Paradise, Altai Mountain Range, Arita Baaijens, 2013

India
Access Water : Ganges River Valley,  Ann Bancroft & Liv Arnesen, 2015

Pamir Mountain Range
Kate Harris : BORDERSKI, Pamir Mountain Range, 2015
A film about this expedition is being made! Check out the teaser

Reducing the Overexploitation of the Bengal Tiger Habitat, Silvia Schrötter, 2018

 
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Atlantic

Bahamas
Collecting Geochemical Samples from a Cave on San Salvador Island, Stephanie Schwabe, 2005

Atlantic Ocean
Crossing the Ocean on a Reed Sailing Boat, Sabrina Lorenz, 2007

Atlantic Ocean
Following the Route of Columbus: Crossing the Atlantic by Sailboat, Beryl Bell, 2007

Northern Bahamas
Tracking Three Generations of Wild Dolphins in the Bahamas: 26 Years in the Field, Denise Herzing, 2010

South Atlantic Ocean
5 Gyres Expedition: The World’s First South Atlantic Ocean Plastic-Pollution StudyAnna Cummins, 2010

 

Europe

Spain
Tracing the Transition from Neanderthal to Cro-Magnon in Western Europe, Anna Pinto, 2005

Europe-Africa
Following Endangered White Storks Across Two Continents, Lorie Karnath, 2007

Greece
Photographing Ancient Sites on the Island of CreteMarilyn Bridges, 2010

 

North/Central America

Belize
The Ruta Maya Belize River Challenge, Jeanette Salfeety, 2005

Dry Tortugas
Bird Banding in the Dry Tortugas, Dalia Amor-Conde, 2005

Guatemala
Roads, Deforestation, and Jaguars, Dalia Amor-Conde, 2006

Wyoming, U.S.
Searching for Cretaceous Dinosaurs, Sue Hendrickson, 2006

Columbia River Basin
Exploring the Health of North America's Majestic Columbia River, Alison Jones, 2007

Florida/California, U.S,
Deep-Sea Exploration with New Eyes and Ears, Edie Widder, 2007

British Columbia, Canada
Tracking Wolves in the Great Bear Rainforest, Heather Bryan, 2008

Upper Columbia River Basin
Exploring Freshwater Values and Management Solutions, Allison Jones, 2008

Great Dismal Swamp, Virginia, U.S.
Swampscapes: Archaeological Exploration in the Great Dismal Swamp, Becca Peixotto, 2016

 
 
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Pacific

Papua New Guinea and Solomon Island
Headhunt Revisited: Charting Cultural Change in Melanesia, Michele Westmorland and Karen Huntt, 2005

Papua New Guinea
Underwater TV: Convict Fish Behavior at Sunrise and Sunset, Eugenie Clark, 2006

Papua New Guinea
Diving to Observe Poisonous Catfish, Eugenie Clark and Anne Doubilet, 2007

Republic of Vanuatu
Female Chiefs of Maewo Island, Sophie Hollingsworth, 2016

Papua New Guinea
The Mountain Speaks, Arita Baaijens, 2016

Republic of Palau
Coral Resilience in the Face of Climate Change, Gaelin Rosenwaks, 2018

Fiji
The Taro Tales: Ethnobotany of Fiji’s Prestige Crop, Sefra Alexandra, 2019

 

Polar Regions

Greenland
Exploring the Greenland Ice Sheet, Natalie Kerhwald, 2007

Svalbard
Chasing the Light at 79 Degrees North, Rena Bass Forman, 2008

Lake Baikal
Life On Thin Ice, Felicity Aston, 2008

Alaska
Labyrinth Sublime: The Inside Passage, North to Alaska, Rosemarie Keough, 2008

Kangiqtugaapik/Clyde River, Baffin Island
The Siku-Inuit-Hila Conference on Sea Ice and Climate ChangeLene Keilsen-Holm, 2008

Arctic
Amundsen Expedition -Exploring and Documenting Marine Benthic Ecosystems in the Arctic, Maeva Gaulthier, 2010

Baffin Island, Nunavut, Canada
Katujjiqatigii: Working Together, The Sedna Epic Expedition, Susan R. Eaton and the Team Sedna, 2016

Antarctica
Homeward Bound, Joanna Young, 2016

Antarctica
Antarctica and Mount Erebus as Analogues for Planetary Landscapes, Rosaly Lopes, 2016

The Arctic
The Women's Euro-Arabian North Pole Expedition, Felicity Aston, 2018