Northern Spaces: Resource Governance in the Southern Northwest Territories

Regions: Dehcho Region, North Slave Region, South Slave Region

Tags: social sciences, socio-economics, resource management, governance

Principal Investigator: Cohen, Alice (3)
Licence Number: 15677
Organization: Acadia University
Licenced Year(s): 2016 2015 2014
Issued: Jun 02, 2015
Project Team: Undergraduate Research Student (Research Assistant, Acadia University)

Objective(s): To highlight the northern dimensions of resource governance in environmental geography and to understand and theorize the relationship(s) between ecosystem governance and political and scientific uncertainty.

Project Description: The goals of this work are to a) highlight the specifically northern dimensions of resource governance in environmental geography and b) contribute to ongoing resource governance development in southern NWT, c) further geographic (and specifically, scalar) scholarship on the political dimensions of ecosystem governance, d) understand and theorize the relationship(s) between ecosystem governance and political and scientific uncertainty.

The Principal Investigator (PI) will carry out a total of approximately 15 interviews. Interviewees will be identified through snowball sampling methods, facilitated by contacts made during a December 2013 research trip. Interviewees will consist of government employees: In Yellowknife and Hay River the PI will be interviewing NWT government employees, and in Fort Resolution the PI will be interviewing Akaitcho Territory Government (ATG) employees.

Potential interviewees will be contacted by email. If they are amenable to participating, an interview will be set up at a time and location convenient for them. Interviews are expected to take place during normal work hours in participants’ offices. Interviews will be semi-structured, and will last approximately one hour. The interviews will be recorded, and will be transcribed by a research assistant. The assistant will be made aware of confidentiality issues. The purpose of the interviews is not to collect quantitative data; it is to give me a sense of the current legislative, political, and economic landscape as per the research questions identified above. As such, data analysis will consist of seeking trends across interviews.

In Fall 2015, the PI will conduct follow up interviews by telephone, and anticipate another trip in December 2015.

Local involvement at this early stage is limited to meetings and interviews that will allow for a better understanding of the environmental governance 'landscape' in the Territory and to identify local research priorities. As the project progresses through the fall of 2015 and into 2016, the PI anticipates that opportunities for local involvement will include hosting workshops, participatory mapping, and data collection.

Any publications (academic or otherwise) arising from the research will be shared with those participating in the interviews, and ongoing contact is anticipated with individuals interested in ongoing collaboration.

As the project advances in future years, the PI will co-hosting workshops, giving community presentations, and establishing a project website.

The fieldwork for this study will be conducted from June 3, 2015 to December 31, 2015.