Alternatives North: A history

Regions: North Slave Region

Tags: social sciences, socio-economics, public policy, history

Principal Investigator: Sabin, Jerald (2)
Licence Number: 14972
Organization: Department of Political Science, University of Toronto
Licensed Year(s): 2011
Issued: Oct 07, 2011

Objective(s): To produce a chapter in an edited book about social economy organizations in Yukon, the Northwest Territories, and Nunavut.

Project Description: The goal of this work is to produce a chapter in an edited book about social economy organizations in Yukon, the Northwest Territories, and Nunavut. The book is supported by the Social Economy Research Network of Northern Canada, located at Yukon College in Whitehorse, Yukon.

The chapter will provide a history of Alternatives North, an overview of its activities and activism, and an analysis of its role in shaping public policy debates in Yellowknife and the Northwest Territories. Besides this chapter, research materials and interviews gathered in this study will be used to produce journal articles and in Jerald Sabin's dissertation work on civil society in the Northwest Territories and Yukon.

This project consists of two parts. First, archival and primary document research will be conducted at Library and Archives Canada (Ottawa, ON), the Prince of Wales Heritage Centre (Yellowknife, NWT), and the Alternatives North office (Yellowknife, NWT). Records kept by Alternatives North including reports, pamphlets, correspondence, meeting minutes, and audio/visual materials will be reviewed, as well as files at Library and Archives Canada and the Prince of Wales Heritage Centre are publicly available.

Second, key participant interviews with past and present members of Alternatives North will be conducted. These participants include members of the executive committee and regular members. Participants will be contacted through the organization and will be selected based on their knowledge and history with Alternatives North.

Alternatives North has been active in Yellowknife since 1992. The group undertakes advocacy activities in the areas of social justice, economic policy, and the environment. It has participated in many of the territory's most significant policy debates, including the Mackenzie Gas Project. This study will enable members of Alternatives North to document their history, organize their archival holdings, and reflect upon their activities over the last twenty years.

Results will be communicated through journal articles, a book chapter, media interviews, and the distribution of a report/update to interview participants and the Yellowknife community.

The fieldwork for this study will be conducted from October 7, 2011 to December 19, 2011.