Integrating Local Knowledge of Ecologically Sensitive and Culturally Important Marine Areas in Arctic Canada

Regions: Inuvialuit Settlement Region

Tags: social sciences, socio-cultural

Principal Investigator: Parker, Colleen (2)
Licence Number: 15907
Organization: WWF-Canada
Licenced Year(s): 2017 2016
Issued: Jun 09, 2016
Project Team: Dr. Tristan Pearce (Researcher, University of the Sunshine Coast), Dr. Jackie Dawson (Researcher, University of Ottawa), Dr. Natalie Carter (Researcher, University of Ottawa), Research partner (Research partner, Communities of Sachs Harbour and Ulukhaktok)

Objective(s): To establish a long-term geo-spatial ship track database (1990-present) in Arctic Canada; to establish ‘zones of high commercial and non-commercial shipping activity’; and, to create ‘local marine use zones’.

Project Description: The objectives of this project are to:
1. establish a long-term geo-spatial ship track database (1990-present) in Arctic Canada;
2. identify temporal and spatial shipping trends and establish ‘zones of high commercial and non-commercial shipping activity’; and,
3. create ‘local marine use zones’ including sensitive ecological and socio-cultural sites for overlay and integration into the northern marine transportation corridors.

Public participatory geographic information system (GIS) mapping and discussion workshops will be conducted. Workshops will be audio and video-recorded.

Youth student researchers will co-facilitate the project. The students will participate in workshop development and refinement, be trained to use GIS software and do videography, and apply that capacity while co-facilitating the workshops.

Mapping data will be analyzed using GIS software. One map combining data from all workshops will be created for each area. Discussion data will be thematically analyzed with a focus on maintaining the integrity of respondents’ narratives. Impact of arctic shipping will be analyzed with regard to season, region, impact, types of use etc.

The social and cultural opportunities include the ability to communicate community members' knowledge about important marine areas that will influence federal decision makers responsible for safe shipping routes.

The educational and economic opportunities include the opportunity to increase capacity by training youth in research techniques. It will also give these youth the chance to learn about culturally important marine areas when speaking to elders and active harvesters in their communities.

A copy of the videos will be given to the community immediately following the workshops. A public meeting will be held in each community to validate and present results. The final composite maps will be placed in an online open-access repository that community members/regional and northern organizations can access. One poster-size printed map will be provided to each community. Electronic maps will be provided to partners and collaborators listed above. Peer-reviewed publications will be shared with communities upon publication.

The fieldwork for this study will be conducted from June 9, 2016 to September 30, 2016.