Indigenous Knowledge and Environmental Impact Assessment in the Northwest Territories
Principal Investigator: Christensen, Julia B (3)
Licence Number: 13653
Organization: University of Calgary
Licensed Year(s): 2004
Issued: Jun 02, 2004

Objective(s): This graduate research focuses on the application of Traditional Knowledge (TK) in environmental impact assessment (EIA) in the NWT, with a specific focus on the Mackenzie Valley, and will identify the ways in which it is linked to political, social, and economic change. The specific objectives are to; 1) examine the relationships between Aboriginal, territorial, and federal governments, and related shifts in power relations; 2) develop a better understanding of how these relations can work to override Aboriginal concerns in favour of industry; 3) provide local people with a contribution towards their ability to assert control over decision-making concerning lands and environment; 4) assess the ways in which the NWT is tied to national and global economics vis a vis resource development, and how this dependency promotes the agendas of resource industry; 5) explore the changing political climate with regard to land claim negotiations, settlements, and self-government agreements; 6) examine the recognition of TK with regard to government policy and implementation; 7) evaluate TK and its legitimacy within a broader politics of knowledge between TK and western science; 8) assess the way in which knowledge systems reflect power relations; 9) explore the NWT model as one that could be applied in similar cases where indigenous peoples are seeking to assert control over resource management on territorial lands; and 10) formulate policy recommendations that work to reconcile conflict between knowledge systems in the NWT. This research will not involve the collection, documentation, and/or cataloguing of TK.