Arctic Borderlands Ecological Knowledge Society - Community Based Monitoring

Regions: Inuvialuit Settlement Region, Gwich'in Settlement Area

Tags: social sciences, traditional knowledge, monitoring

Principal Investigator: Ashthorn, Heather (3)
Licence Number: 16370
Organization: Arctic Borderlands Ecological Knowledge Society
Licensed Year(s): 2018 2017 2017 2015 2013 2012 2011 2009 2008 2006
Issued: Jul 19, 2018
Project Team: Yet to be determined (x7) (community senior monitor, ABEKS), Yet to be determined (X7) (community youth monitor, ABEKS)

Objective(s): To document local experiences of ecological change in the range of the Porcupine Caribou Herd and share that knowledge for co-management.

Project Description: The goal of this project is to document local experiences of ecological change in the range of the porcupine caribou herd and share that knowledge for co-management.

Community monitors will assist in each community and will be trained in Inuvik at the start of the monitoring season. Renewable Resource Council’s (RRCs) and Hunters and Trappers Committees (HTCs) are responsible for choosing a monitor and work with the monitor to identify 20 local experts for the interview. Interviews are conducted using a standard survey and with permission sought through a signed consent form. Interviewees are asked many questions relating to their experience on the land. Monitors then enter all survey responses into an online database which is hosted by DataPath Systems. Responses are tabulated and turned into graphs for presentation back to the communities.

The assistants will take on full administration of the monitoring program in their community. There are also community meetings held after the data is uploaded. Data is presented at a meeting for beneficiaries in each community which is an opportunity for community members to give valuable feedback, a step towards validating the data and to seek involvement on the board of directors. The data is accessible by application to the communities that the applicant is seeking data from. Ultimately, the data is available for governments and co-management authorities for consideration and inclusion in decision-making. This research will contribute toimproved economic circumstances for all communities via better decision making including local knowledge, which can improve food security and other community dynamics.

Results will be reported at community meetings hosted in each community at the end of the season. Typically, meetings are open to all beneficiaries. ABEKS also produces a community monitor report with a summary of each monitor's experience written by the monitor. Each monitor receives a copy and extras are given to the RRC or HTC involved and made available on the ABEKS website.

The fieldwork for this study will be conducted from September 1, 2018 to December 31, 2018.