Sahtu Dene and Metis Community Engagement in the Closure and Reclamation of the Norman Wells Oilfield
Principal Investigator: King, Ann (1)
Licence Number: 17070
Organization: University of Northern British Columbia
Licensed Year(s): 2022
Issued: Jun 27, 2022

Objective(s): To examine the processes of engagement and roles of Sahtu Dene and Metis knowledge and perspectives for their traditional territory in the Norman Wells Oilfield Reclamation and Closure.

Project Description: This licence has been issued for the scientific research application No.5250.

This projects aims and objectives are to examine the processes of engagement and roles of Sahtu Dene and Metis knowledge and perspectives for their traditional territory in the Norman Wells Oilfield Reclamation and Closure. The Principal Investigator (PI) will: 1) review how Indigenous peoples living in northern Canada have been engaged in non-renewable resource extraction in northern Canada to identify best practices; 2) examine the structures and processes for how Sahtu Dene and Metis have been engaged in the Norman Wells Oilfield Reclamation and Closure; and 3) identify opportunities for the meaningful involvement of Sahtu Dene and Metis in the remediation, reclamation, and monitoring of the Norman Wells Oilfield Reclamation and Closure.

The research will be conducted using a community-based participatory research approach. Research design and direction has been conducted in partnership with the Sahtu Land and Water Board (SLWB), and local researchers will be involved throughout the research process.

Data collection will take the form of semi-structured interviews. These interviews will take place at locations that are convenient for participants (e.g. workplace, home, outdoors, and meeting rooms) and are expected to take approximately 30 minutes. Handwritten notes will be the standard data recording method, though conversations may be recorded if consent is given by participants. Data collection will be conducted by King together with a research partner from Fort Good Hope. Short term, data will be stored with the SLWB, and long-term will remain at SLWB. Completed interview data will be analyzed using latent content analysis techniques to identify reoccurring themes. The data will be scanned to identify common themes, and participants will have the opportunity to validate conclusions to ensure accurate representation.

Communication between researchers and Sahtu Dene and Metis organizations (e.g. SLWB) will be ongoing throughout the research process. The research team will work together with the local research partner to develop appropriate and effective methods for communicating results at the community level. These may include plain-language summary reports in Slavey and English with photos and key findings, updates over local/regional radio broadcasts, household visits to discuss results, and presentations for the community and local schools. Participants who have consented to be revisited will be consulted to verify interpretations and representations of data collected. This will also be an opportunity to share overall results with participants. Results will be shared with all study participants.

The fieldwork for this study will be conducted from June 27, 2022 to July 31, 2022