Indigenous Land Claims and Environmental Live .DRAFT GAP ANALYSIS REPORT #10 Indigenous Land Claims

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    Indigenous Land Claims and Environmental Livelihoods

    David Natcher, University of Saskatchewan

    Contributions from Larry Felt, Andrea Procter, & Bethany Haalboom In Consultation with the Council of Athabaskan Tribal Governments,

    Nunatsiavut Government, and the Little Red River Cree Nation

  • D. Natcher Indigenous Land Claims & Environmental Livelihoods

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    Indigenous livelihoods across the North are diverse, complex, and socially differentiated, and are influenced by the economic, political, and institutional environments in which they are situated. Our knowledge of subsistence economies has been informed by a number of published and unpublished sources. However, these studies are difficult to compare due to a high degree of theoretical and methodological pluralism, and substantial variability in reporting. Missing from much of the existing literature are more in-depth, contextual, and comparative studies that use a common methodology that allow community\regional synthesis, comparison, and data quality controls.


    Academic interest in indigenous subsistence economies in the Arctic can be traced to a number of factors: 1) subsistence economies provide insight into other social processes, cultural configurations, and changes in individual behavior; 2) harvest studies can reveal some of the acute economic conditions facing many indigenous populations throughout the Arctic; and 3) subsistence data are uniquely qualified to address the emergence of wildlife conservation concerns. This existing literature can be divided into two general groupings - theoretical and applied studies. The latter refers primarily to close-range studies of food procurement in regions, communities, or for specific resources. The former, or more theoretical grouping, reflect studies that utilize subsistence data to advance social theory, for instance theories of acculturation and modernization as gleaned through the observance of food habits or local forms of economy. Collectively, subsistence studies provide effective starting points for investigating cultural, economic and political dynamics in the North. Within the two general grouping noted above (theoretical and applied), subsistence studies can be further organized into a number of themes (see below). It is important to note that many, if not most of the studies identified may overlap into other categories. However, for the purpose of this Gap Analysis, this type of organization offers a useful frame of reference to situate research trends, and serves as a conceptual starting point for the Gap Analysis and identification of problem areas in the sections that follow (the references listed below are only representative of a much larger body of literature that can be found in this area).

  • D. Natcher Indigenous Land Claims & Environmental Livelihoods

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    A. Studies of Subsistence with Primarily Descriptive, Empirical and/or Practical Emphasis

    Types of Studies

    1. Anthropological (Predominantly Descriptive)

    This heading is used arbitrarily to organize studies that have a more or less cultural orientation. The studies that are included here span disciplinary boundaries.

    Wolfe, Robert J. and Robert J. Walker. 1987. Subsistence Economies in Alaska:

    Productivity, Geography, and Development Impacts. Arctic Anthropology, Vol. 24(2): 56-81.

    Wenzel, George, 2005. Canadian Inuk Subsistence and Economy. In Socio-Economic Research on Management Systems of Living Resources: Strategies, Recommendations and Examples. Proceedings of the Workshop on Social and Ecological Research Related to the Management of Marine Resources in West Greenland, L. Muller-Wille, M.C.S. Kingsley and S.S. Nielson (eds.). Nuuk: Greenland Institute of Natural Resources: 146-151.

    Ellanna, L. J. and G. K. Sherrod, 1984. The Role of Kinship Linkages in Subsistence Production: Some Implications for Community Organization. Technical Paper No.100. Alaska Department of Fish and Game, Division of Subsistence, Juneau.

    Magdanz, J.S., Utermohle, C.J. and Wolfe, R.J. 2002. The Production and Distribution of Wild Food in Wales and Deering, Alaska. Division of Subsistence, Alaska Department of Fish and Game, Technical Paper 259. Juneau, Alaska.

    2. Sociological and Rural Economic Studies (Descriptive and Practical)

    Bisseit, D. 1974. Resource Harvests - Hunter-Trappers in the Mackenzie Valley. Task Force on Northern Oil Development, ReportNo.74-42. Ottawa: Information Canada. 208 p.

    Donaldson, J. 1984. 1982 Wildlife Harvest Statistics for the Baffin Region, N.W.T. Baffin Region Inuit Association, Technical Report No2, 64 p.

    Finley, K.J., and Miller, G.W. 1980. Wildlife Harvest Statistics from Clyde River, Grise Fiord and Pond Inlet, 1979. Prepared for Petro-Canada Explorations by LGL Ltd., Toronto3. 7 p. Available from LGL Ltd., Box 457, King City, Ontario LOG 1KO.

    Gamble, R.L. 1984. A Preliminary Study of the Native Harvest of Wildlife in the Keewatin Region, Northwest Territories Canadian Technical Report of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences No 1: 48 p.

    McEachern, J. 1978. A survey of resource harvesting, Eskimo Point NWT, 1975-77. Prepared for Polar Gas Project, Quest Socio-Economic Consultants Inc., Delta, B.C. 2681A3v. Available at Polar Gas Project, Box 90, Commerce

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    Court West, Toronto, Ontario M5L 1H3. Riewe, R.R. 1977. The Utilization of wildlife in the Jones Sound region by the

    Grise Fiord Inuit. In: Bliss, L.E., ed. Truelove Lowland, Devon Island, Canada: A high Arctic ecosystem. Edmonton: University of Alberta Press: 623-64.

    Usher, P.J. 1982. Renewable Resources in the Future of Northern Labrador. Nain, Labrador: Labrador Inuit Association.

    3. General Nutrition

    This category includes a large number of studies on the food habits and nutrition of indigenous peoples in the North based on primary and secondary data sources.

    Wein, Eleanor E. and Milton M.R. Freeman, 1995. Frequency of Traditional Food Use by Three Yukon First Nations Living in Four Communities. Arctic, Vol. 48(2) 161-171.

    Mackey, M.G.A., and Orr, R.D. 1987. The Evaluation of Household Country Food Use in Makkovik, Labrador, July 1980-June 1981. Arctic 40: 60-65.

    Schuster, R.C., Wein, E.E., Dickson, C., Chan, H.M., 2011. Importance of traditional foods for the food security of two First Nations communities in the Yukon, Canada. Int. J., Circumpolar Health, Jun; 70(3): 286-300.

    Peace R, N Hidiroglou, P Jee, D Leggee and H Kuhnlein (2008) Levels of folate, pyridoxine, niacin and riboflavin in traditional foods of Canadian Arctic Indigenous Peoples. J. Food Compos. Anal. 21: 474-480.

    Egeland GM, G Charbonneau-Roberts, J Kuluguqtuq, J Kilabuk, L Okalik, R Soueida and HV Kuhnlein (2009) Back to the Future: Using Traditional Food and Knowledge to Promote a Healthy Future among Inuit. In: Kuhnlein HV, B Erasmus and D Spigelski. Indigenous Peoples Food Systems: the Many Dimensions of Culture, Diversity and Environment for Nutrition and Health. United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, Rome.

    5. Wildlife Management (with emphasis on conservation)

    Sumida, V.A., and D.B. Anderson. 1990. Patterns of Fish and Wildlife Use for Subsistence in Fort Yukon, Alaska. Technical Paper No. 179, Alaska Dept. of Fish and Game, Subsistence Division, Juneau.

    Caulfield, R.A. 1983. Subsistence Land Use in Upper Yukon-Porcupine Communities, Alaska. Technical Paper No. 16, Alaska Department of Fish and Game, Subsistence Division, Juneau.

    Jingfors, K. 1986. Inuit harvesting levels of caribou in the Kitikmeot Region, Northwest Territories, Canada, 1982-1984. Rangifer , special issue no. 1:167-172.

    Byers, T. and D.L. Dickson, 2001 Spring Migration and Subsistence Hunting of King and Common Eiders at Holman, NWT, 1996-1998. Arctic, 54(2): 122-134.

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    Nagy, John and Paul Fraser, 1993. Fort McPherson Caribou Harvest Study. Department of Renewable Resources, Government of the Northwest Territories, Inuvik, NWT.

    6. TEK and Wildlife Harvesting

    Gilchrist, G., M. Mallory and F. Merkel 2005. Can local ecological knowledge contribute to wildlife management? Case studies of migratory birds. Ecology and Society 10(1): 20. [online] URL:

    Ferguson, Michael and Francois Messier, 1997. Collection and Analysis of Traditional Ecological Knowledge about a Population of Arctic Tundra Caribou. Arctic, Vol. 50(1): 17-28.

    7. Multidisciplinary

    Wolfe, Brent B. Murray M. Humphries, Michael F.J. Pisaric, Ann M. Balasubramaniam, Chris R. Burn, Laurie Chan, Dorothy Cooley, Duane G. Froese, Shel Graupe, Roland I. Hall, Trevor Lantz, Trevor J. Porter, Pascale Roy-Leveillee, Kevin W. Turner, Sonia D. Wesche and Megan Williams, 2011. Environmental Change and Traditional Use of the Old Crow Flats in Northern Canada: An IPY Opportunity to Meet the Challenges of the New Northern Research Paradigm. Arctic, Vol. 64(1): 127-135.

    B. Studies with Small-Scale Theoretical Framework or Implied Theory

    8. Anthropological (including Modernization/Acculturation Studies)

    Again, this heading is used arbitrarily to organize studies tha