Global challenges: Sami and Indigenous Research It is fair to say that the field of Sami and Indigenous Research

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Global challenges: Sami and Indigenous Research
It is fair to say that the field of Sami and Indigenous Research has grown rapidly over the last decades, not only here at the Faculty of Arts, Umeå University but also globally. The reasons for this development are multiple, but boils down to Indigenous Peoples often being the first to be affected by the amplifying societal and environmental changes brought by climate change, large scale resource extractive industries and exploitation. At the same time Indigenous Peoples are raising their voices, demanding participation or self-determination. Research within this field is thereby intimately tied to documenting, mapping, interviewing, registering, observing, discussing and analyzing themes that all take on and connect to societal and global challenges.
It is also fair to say that Umeå University and the faculty of arts are the strongest nodal point for Sami and Indigenous research in Sweden. Researchers from all departments at the Faculty of Arts are involved in these various projects. There are networks such as NORRSAM (funded by Forte), Gruvrealistiska nätverket (Funded by RJ) that bring scholars together and centres such as Vaartoe/CeSam and Arcum that upkeep Sami and Indigenous research.

Still, we believe that more could be done at the Faculty of Arts through a permanent support for ex. PhD positions in the field of Sami and Indigenous research.

In section 1 We list 20 ongoing projects, some of them are large international projects such as “Colonisation and Indigenous Health” led by Per Axelsson funded by VR and Wallenberg, MISTRA MASD led by Peter Sköld and Carina Keskitalo or “Narrating Sápmi” led by Marianne Liliequist funded by FORMAS. There are also smaller projects (or projects within projects) led by one person such as Kristina Belancic on “The Development of Literacy in Sami, a heritage language” and Kristina Sehlin MacNeil’s research on conflict management, mining and indigenous peoples.
Listed in section two “Future” are also a couple of projects that are being reviewed by research councils. Many of us have possibilities to join for the two seminars. We look forward to your reply!

Kind regards on behalf of the researchers

Per Axelsson, Kristina Belancic, Coppélie Cocq and Krister Stoor

Section 1: Ongoing research
1.Lis-Mari Hjortfors, PhD student; Department of language studies/Sami studies and Vaartoe/CeSam (Center for Sami research). Umeå University

1. Titel: Laestadianism: Religious revivalism a space for preserving Sami Identities, language and tradition in the Lule Sami area

This PhD project, located at the Centre for Sami Research at the Umeå University in Sweden, focuses on the Laestadian religious revivalist movement at the Lule Sami area. Laestadianism was a Lutheran revivalist movement which had a huge importance for Sami livelihood. I intend to explore the possibility that the revivalist movement grew out of a situation of crisis for the Sami. The Lule Sami area is located within the current nation states of Norway and Sweden, from the Gulf of Bothnia coast to the Atlantic coast. The Laestadian revivalist religious movement was established in the 1840s by Lars Levi Laestadius, who lived 1800-1861. Being Lule Sami myself, working within a Swedish university setting, I wish to discuss useful methods and ways to work from a critical Indigenous studies perspective within the ethnological tradition. Focus is on the front figures L.L. Laestadius, his follower Johan Raattamaa and the Westlaestadian part of the movement.

2. Relevance : As forced Christianization was paralleled with Swedification and Norwegianisation politics of colonization onto the Sami by the nation states, I argue that there was a space created within the Laestadian movement to preserve Sami culture, identity, religiosity and language.

Other indigenous people around the world have the same manner to preserve culture and language and tradition.

2. Per Axelsson; Vaartoe/CeSam (Centre for Sami research)

1. Titel: Colonisation and Indigenous Health

2. Ingress: Recent international health research published in The Lancet has tied poor Indigenous health to the process of colonization and suggests that to be able to address the existing national-level variation in Indigenous health outcomes and ongoing inequalities it is critical to understand how the process of colonization affected the lives of Indigenous people.

An International, interdisciplinary project that through qualitative and quantitative evidence (18th-21st C) seeks to understand the drivers and mechanisms linking colonisation and health in Australia, New Zealand and Sweden. The overall question being: what are the main mechanisms behind the positive outcome of Sami health in Sweden and the ”shameful gap” in health and wellbeing that remains today between Indigenous and non-Indigenous in New Zeeland and Australia?

3. Relevance: Understanding the extent to which health disadvantages among Indigenous people can be counteracted is of crucial importance to today’s international research agenda. The international comparison will generate results vital for understanding how colonization, in all its complexity, has shaped the health outcomes of Indigenous peoples in Sweden, Australia and New Zealand. The main driver behind the project is to give support to the global Indigenous community in the fight for equal health. The project is not about finding evidence to blame previous generations for what they did or did not do. It is about learning from the past to create a better future.

The project has from the Swedish Research Council and Knut and Alice Wallenberg foundation until 2018 and have begun to build an interdisciplinary research team of scholars from Indigenous research, history, sociology, demography and public health. The project is led from Umeå University, with partners at University of Melbourne Australia, University of Waikato, New Zealand and Royal Technical College (KTH) Stockholm.

3. Mardoeke Boekraad, PhD-student; Department of Historical, Philosophical and Religious Studies

1. Titel: Sami voices Sorry churches

2. Ingress: This PhD research project aims at studying the reconciliation process between the Sami people and the Churches of Norway and of Sweden from a Christian Sami grass-roots perspective, by analyzing four case studies in Sweden and Norway. The aim is to investigate if and how Sami are perceiving the reconciliation process and what role differences in religiosity have for them in the process.

The reconciliation process between the Lutheran Church of Sweden, the Church of Norway, and the Sami populations is now about two decades old and has generated many practical initiatives and transformations in the thinking and enacting of the Christian faith.

4. Johan Runemark Brydsten, PhD-student; Department of Historical, Philosophical and Religious Studies

1. Titel: Vision and education in Sami confirmation: Culture, tradition and history as prerequisites

2. Ingress: During the last decades renegotiations have been initiated where different groups of Sami have started to adapt their Christian faith and practices to a Sami cultural context. Churches in Sweden and Norway have, among other things, opened up for yoik chanting, which was previously regarded as sinful, and clergy of Sami origin have brought typical Sami elements into church services and religious texts. One specific example of this is the Sami confirmation camp which is organized by the Church of Sweden. The focus of my thesis are to survey and analyze the visions and teaching at these camps in light of the colonial relations that characterized, and to some extent still characterizes, the encounter between the Church of Sweden and the Sami people.

5. Olle Sundström, PhD, associate professor in the History of Religions; Department of Historical, Philosophical and Religious Studies

1. Titel: Soviet research and state policies towards indigenous religions

2. Ingress: In two monographs and several articles I have been studying and analyzing Soviet research and (anti-)religious policies on, first and foremost, religions among the indigenous peoples of northern Eurasia. I have focused on Soviet discussions on the origin, evolution and function of phenomena such as “religion”, “shamanism”, and beliefs in “supernatural beings”. The interdependence (and at times disjunction) between research, state policies and Marxist-Leninist doctrine on these matters is of main importance in my analyses of the source material. Together with some 15 scholar from different countries I also participate in a joint project within which the repression of religious and ethnic minorities in the Soviet Union during the Stalin era is closely studied.
6. Olle Sundström, PhD, associate professor in the History of Religions; Department of Historical, Philosophical and Religious Studies

1. Titel: The relation between Christianity and indigenous Sami religion

2. Ingress: In a few shorter projects I am studying the attitudes of the Nordic Lutheran churches towards indigenous Sami religion during different epochs: in one study I analyze the understanding of and attitude towards indigenous Sami “gods” and “divinities”; in another I explore the so-called theology of religions, regarding particularly indigenous Sami religion, within the Church of Sweden; and in a third study I focus on present-day Christian Sami contextual theology and indigenous theology. Parts of these projects relate to “The Church of Sweden and the Sami – a white book project”, which is a collaboration involving some 30 scholars, who from different angles survey the relations between the Church of Sweden and the Sami through the centuries. My research is urgent in order to explain how the understanding of indigenous Sami religion has evolved and changed within research and theology, but also in concrete religious practice.

7. Daniel Lindmark, professor of Church History; Department of Historical, Philosophical and Religious Studies

1. Titel: Historical injustice and present-day reconciliation: The relationship between the Church of Sweden and the Saami population

2. Ingress: In several projects, I have studied the historical relationships between the Swedish and Saami populations from a colonial and postcolonial perspective. Focus has been placed on the Church of Sweden and its missionary efforts and educational activities among the Saami. For the time being, I am directing two research projects in which historical relationships are related to the present situation. The project “Saami Voices and Sorry Churches” studies the use of history in church-Saami reconciliation activities, while the white book project on the Church of Sweden and the Saami provides historical documentation of problematic elements in order to support an ongoing reconciliation process. These projects are of general and international relevance, since the “retrospective practices” represented by the white book project and other reconciliation activities address questions concerning reparation of the damage that colonial power relations have inflicted on indigenous populations.

8. Lars-Erik Edlund, professor in Nordic Languages and Daniel Andersson, Associate Professor; Language Department

1. Titel: Language Policy in a Postcolonial Swedish Sápmi

2. Ingress: According to The Heritage Conservation Act (4 § 1988:950, revised 2000:265), Swedish, Sami and Finnish names shall, as far as possible, be used in parallel on maps and also for signs and other markings in multilingual areas. The Swedish Government has given The National Road Administration the task of intensifying signage with minority language place-names (Prop. 2008/09:158, p. 120) and also exhorted local authorities to do the same.

This research area focuses on issues of language policy in Swedish Sápmi, with a special emphasis on processes where Sami place names are made visible. At the moment studies are conducted on practices at an administrative level, as well as on local place-making tied to questions regarding cultural identity.

The Research Counsel Formas is funding the above mentioned studies until the end of 2016. The research is carried out by Daniel Andersson and Lars-Erik Edlund.

3. Relevance: The results will be useful for example in minority policy work, decision-making and implementation. And, by highlighting the mechanisms and strategies involved in place-making in relation to place-names, concrete ways can be explored, in which Sami traditions and identities can be revitalised, strengthened and empowered.

9. Kristina Sehlin MacNeil, PhD student; Institutionen for Ethnology, Vaartoe/CeSam (Centre for Sami research) and David Unaipon College for Indigenous Education and Research, University of South Australia

1. Titel: Indigenous Peoples Views Regarding Conflict Management in a Dynamic Era. The Dilemma of Sustainable Development and Mining

2. Ingress: Due to the Swedish government's mineral strategy there has been an increase in conflict between Sami people and the authorities in Sweden, where Sami people do not have the right to stop mining projects on their reindeer grazing lands. In Australia, where Aboriginal and Torres Straight Islander communities hold native title, the situation is slightly different, however, previous research shows that there are many similarities in the power structures built into the contacts between these Indigenous groups and mining companies. This study investigates the power structures as well as structural and cultural violence in conflict between Indigenous groups and mining companies and draws on theorists such as peace researcher Johan Galtung to relate the experiences held by the Sami and Aboriginal research participants. Although there is research on the effects of mining on Indigenous communities, as well as studies on power relations between Indigenous peoples and dominant societies, there are few studies dealing with power relations and structures in conflict between Indigenous groups and mining companies with international comparisons.

3. Relevance: By sharing these experiences on an international level and uncovering some of the strategies used by mining companies as well as some of the effects the power structures have on Indigenous communities, it is expected that the research contribute to improving processes of conflict management between mining companies and Indigenous groups.

10. Annette Löf, Research assistant; Vaartoe/CeSam (Centre for Sami research)

1. Titel: Vad händer med urfolksrättigheter i praktiken?

2. Ingress: På den internationella arenan har vi de senaste årtiondena sett en enorm utveckling och erkännande av urfolksrättigheter, inte minst i förhållande till övergripande frågor om kulturell integritet, hållbar utveckling och ökat deltagande i naturresursförvaltning. Trots att urfolk därigenom fått ökad legitimitet, representation och både mjuka och legalt bindande instrument som styrker urfolks mänskliga rättigheter så finns det stora skillnader i hur dessa rättigheter implementeras och införlivas i praktiken. Sverige, trots sitt rykte som föregångare inom mänskliga rättigheter, har fått återkommande kritik mot hur man hanterar samernas situation och deras internationellt erkända urfolksrättigheter på nationell nivå.

3. Relevans: Projektet, som finansieras av Diskrimineringsombudsmannen, syftar till att undersöka hur samers rättigheter som urfolk förstås och införlivas i en svensk kontext och hur diskriminering mot samer som urfolk kan motverkas. Projektet är, sin praktiska inriktning till trots, nära kopplat med frågor om landrättigheter, naturresursutvinning och konflikter, globala diskurser, dekolonisering och hållbar utveckling.
11. Marianne Liliequist, Professor; Department of Culture and Media Studies

Project participants: Marianne Liliequist, Professor in Ethnology, Department of Culture and Media Studies, Umeå University
Krister Stoor, Ph.D. in Sámi Studies, Department of Language Studies, Umeå University
Coppelie Cocq, PhD in Sámi Studies, HUMlab, Umeå University
Marika Nordström, PhD in Ethnology, Department of Culture and Media Studies, Umeå University

1. Titel: Narrating Sápmi. Production and transmission of indigenous knowledge

2. Ingress: This project investigates strategies developed by Sámi communities to ensure the transmission of culturally specific knowledge. Four case studies examine more specifically how Sámi groups have elaborated modes of communication (1) between generations, (2) between herders and landowners, (3) through digital and mobile technologies and (4) through popular music. Focus lies on narrativity as a vehicle for shaping and conveying knowledge and for the articulation of identities.

The project combines a folkloristic approach and narrative analysis of data collected through in-depth interviews and participant observations, focusing on the artistic and communicative aspects of storytelling.
2. Relevance: This project, localized in Sápmi, is conducted from a Sámi perspective based on the knowledge and experience of scholars and the research environment at Umeå University, in dialogue with the community. It connects to global issues on several levels. Research on indigenous knowledge and empowerment is of immediate significance for the understanding of societal and environmental change as it comes to expression in conflicts and tensions in relation to exploitations and land rights, as well as in a media landscape where voices traditionally in the margin can break through and challenge democracy and power structures, influence the circulation of information and organize resistance.
This project also addresses one of the greatest global challenges in our contemporary societies, i.e. an aging population. Here, this challenge is approached out of a sense of tradition: the Sami community still makes use of the older generation’s knowledge and experience to a much greater extent than other parts of Swedish society. This view of the elderly as knowledge intermediaries and role models has in fact grown stronger in recent times due to the Sami identity struggle, based on which the elderly are playing an important role in the struggle for cultural survival.

12. Alf Arvidsson, Katarzyna Wolanik-Boström, Ann-Cristin Winroth and Krister Stoor

1. Titel: Oral Tradition: Building an Intangible Culture Heritage

2. Ingress: Project aims to analyse narratives as cultural heritage and culture history. Focusing how storytellers adapt, recreate and interpret narratives as performances to societal contexts. The study has a global and an indigenous perspective, comparison with Swedish situation.
13. Peter Sköld, Arctic Research Centre and Centre for Sami Research

1. Titel: Sami historical demography

2. Ingress: The demographic transition of the Sami have been under investigation for several years. Together with Gabriella Nordin I continue these investigations, presently focusing on marriage patterns and migration

3.Relevance: The work is important not least for the understanding of the colonization and the epidemiological transition in Swedish Sápmi.

14. Peter Sköld, Arctic Research Centre and Centre for Sami Research

1. Titel: The New Arctic

2. Ingress: The New Arctic is a book project involving some fifteen researchers addressing the most urgent aspects of Arctic societies today. The book will be published by Springer.

3. Relevance: I am responsible for the chapter discussing challenges for reindeer herding and Sami societies, and it is of course very important to have these perspectives included.
15. Peter Sköld, Arctic Research Centre and Centre for Sami Research

1. Project: Mistra Arctic New Governance for a Sustainable Development in the European Arctic

2. Ingress: MASD is a research programme involving 40 researchers in Sweden, Norway, Finland, and Russia. The main theme of this programme is governance. It focuses on land use and industry in the European Arctic mainland in the past and in the present, as well as elucidate the framework for future governance of the region. Seven different economic or municipal sectors will be in focus, namely mining, forestry, oil and gas exploration, fishing, reindeer husbandry, tourism industry and municipal planning. These sectors and the interaction between them will be studied in four main study areas, where focal municipalities will be the target both for case studies and stakeholder meetings.

3. Relevance: The Sami relevance of the MASD project is outspoken, since they are a most important part of understanding the sustainability concept correctly. Especially the long-term investigation of the governance structures relate to the Sami and reindeer husbandry particularly.

The project has a 40 mSEK budget and operates 2014-2018. Project leaders are Peter Sköld and Carina Keskitalo.

16. Peter Sköld, Arctic Research Centre and Centre for Sami Research

1. Titel: Arctic Human Development Report II

2. Ingress: AHDR II is an important scientific project that include 50 researchers from many different countries. It addresses the most important changes and challenges in the Arctic societies during the past ten years. Topics include health, legal issues, education, demography, policies, governance, globalization and economies. The report was published late February 2015.

3. Relevance: The indigenous cultures in the Arctic are prominent, and have substantial space I AHDR II. The report is endorsed by the Saami council, IPC, Gwitchin Council and Aleut International Association. AHDR II is an important toll for the indigenous peoples to highlight there situation(s) from a scientific basis.

Together with Peter Schweitzer (Vienna) and Olga Ulturgasheva (Cambridge) I am responsible for the chapter Cultures and Identities.

17. Kristina Belancic, PhD student at the Language department/Centre for Sami Research

1.Titel: The Development of Literacy in Sami, a heritage language

This PhD study is part of a project called Educational democratization and “ethnification” in Swedish Sápmi – 1942 to the present and is a collaboration between the Sami board of education and the Sami schools.

2. Ingress: There is a lot of research being done in the field of literacy, multilingualism and mother tongue among Swedish pupils in Sweden and how this affects the pupils´ performance in school. At the same time there is a knowledge gap concerning these topics when it comes to Sami pupils in Sweden. This projects aims to take a Sami perspective on reading and oral use of Sami in Sami schools in Sweden. The situation of Sami pupils’ literacy proficiency in Sweden is similar to other indigenous peoples in countries such as Canada and Australia.

3. Relevance: From possible findings we can learn more about effective teaching towards multilingualism, as more and more of our population today is multilingual, and Sami schools have experiences in this field. Additionally, the findings can be transmitted in other Indigenous contexts.

18. Mikael Vinka, Senior lecturer (associate professor); Department of Language Studies

1. Titel: Om Korpus

2. Ingress: Talade korpusar har kommit att inta en framträdande position i studiet av språk (Chambers, 2007). I språkrevitaliseringskontexter är de viktiga för att kunna kompensera för begränsade exponeringsmöjligheter, och de stödjer såväl lärare som elever (Boyce 2006). Vidare utgör en talad korpus ett viktigt verktyg för lingvistisk forskning.

Det är emellertid ett relativt ouppmärksammat faktum att skapandet av en talad korpus är ett utmärkt medium för tvärvetenskaplig forskning. Jag menar att kultur och samhällsvetenskaplig forskning om samer och samiska förhållanden skulle vara vara mycket lämpat för detta. Dels ger det samhälls/kulturvetaren möjlighet att insamla data på samiska, varvid materialet transkriberas och förs in i den lingvistiska databasen. Materialet blir då tillgängligt inte bara för språkliga och språkvetenskapliga syften, utan skulle också utgöra en viktig resurs för kultur och samhällsvetenskapliga syften. Detta skulle vara ett i mitt tycke mycket lämpligt samarbetsprojekt mellan institutionen för språkstudier och CeSam.

19. Krister Stoor, Senior lecturer (associate professor); Department of Language Studies

1. Titel: Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage

2. Ingress: In a global warming and changing environments, what happens to the stories and traditional knowledge when culture changes and infrastructure makes it impossible to obtain traditional lifestyles.

3. Unesco reports and indigenous methodologies.

20. Dieter Müller, Kulturgeografi

1. Titel: From Reindeer Herder to Tourist Entrepreneur: The Transformation of Sapmi as Geographical Process and Lived Experience

2. Ingress: The purpose of this project is to analyze the transformation of a traditional indigenous industry, the reindeer herding, into a service-based and touristified economy. This is achieved by investigating the changing economic geography of the Sami as process and lived experience. Important research questions are:

1. Where and when is reindeer herding restructured into other industries, particularly tourism?

2. What geographical and individual characteristics do signify Sami leaving reindeer herding?

3. In what ways and to what extent do global processes, outside stakeholders (media, politicians) and inside stakeholders (e.g. Sami organizations) influence the restructuring of reindeer herding into tourism?

4. How do Sami cope with and re-negotiate their identities and relations to the reindeer herding community after getting involved into new businesses? What problems and solutions can be identified?

5. What are the consequences for future restructuring of reindeer herding and what are the roles of policy makers and organizations?

Relevans: There is an ongoing concern, as expressed by the Human Rights Committee, about the limited extent to which the Sami Parliament may participate in the decision-making process on issues affecting land and traditional activities of the Sami people. Hence, there are continuous negotiations between different groups regarding land use and the right to place. Accordingly, Northern Sweden may be seen as an arena of negotiation; a ‘meeting place’, internally complex and always negotiated and fought over. Despite the recent reappraisal of mining resources, energy production and nature preservation in the peripheral areas of Northern Sweden no permanent change is at hand for the Sami. Instead it has put increasing pressure on traditional economies like reindeer herding but also on tourism.

Outside interests and policies affect the development of the remote economies and communities in Northern Sweden. Hence, a lack of human and economic capital, but also limited infrastructure and networks delimit communities’ abilities to influence development. The peripheral position of Northern Sweden may also be seen as a part of a wider discursive network that represents Norrland as an ‘internal other’ within Sweden (Eriksson, 2008; 2010). When the representations and identity of the North become intertwined with exoticism and stereotypes of the Sámi people, the economic restructuring turns into a still more complex social process.

Section 2- Future and Research network

Future research
1. Anna-Lill Ledman

1.Project: Knowledge production for societal action: Exploring ‘collaboration’ and integrated knowledge translation through methodologies in Indigenous research (KNOWIR)

Research environments: Vaartoe/Centre for Sami research, Umeå University, Department of Business Administration, Technology and Social sciences, Luleå University of Technology, Centre for Maori and Indigenous governance, University of Waikato, NZ and Faculty of Law, University of Otago, NZ.

2. Ingress: Modern societies face novel problems, posing challenges to traditional (hierarchical) forms of decision-making and problem-solving, particularly in the field of human-environmental regimes but also related to issues of social justice in terms of how human, cultural and Indigenous rights are protected and supported in community settings that are becoming increasingly diverse. Traditional forms of interaction and one-way information exchanges still seem to dominate policy and practice. This suggests that the current role of research as a key player in societal problem-solving activities has yet to be fully realized.

3. Relevance: In Sweden and internationally, including New Zealand, the primary focus for collaboration has been framed around the advantages it brings for innovation and entrepreneurship, reducing societal values and benefits to monetary and technological gains. Knowledge production needs to be conceptualized more broadly and based on collective problem formulation and problem-solving in order to address many of today’s complex societal challenges, which is particularly relevant to Indigenous communities who have historically been marginalized within the research endeavor. A key issue for Indigenous communities is how to collaborate with the research community to produce knowledge that addresses issues of sustainability for Indigenous communities and contribute to the development of a more equitable society. The overarching objective of the proposed program is to identify how collaborative processes between researchers and other stakeholders create more relevant, usable and sustainable knowledge through processes of knowledge production and knowledge transfer. Hence, we explore how collaboration can address challenges in the use and management of natural resources with respect to Indigenous rights and interests. Linking research, a graduate school and a collaborative mobility program, our international, interdisciplinary research team will draw on a novel combination of governance theories and Indigenous methodologies to explore models of collaboration that contribute to the sustainable provision of knowledge to Indigenous communities and to the broader society.

2. Annette Löf

1. Projekttitel: Transformationer mot hållbar utveckling inom urfolkssamhällen

2. Ingress: Globala förändringsprocesser, däribland klimatförändring, har en differentierad påverkan på olika platser, samhällen och levnadssätt. En vanlig föreställning är att urfolk och andra som lever nära sammankopplat med naturen och naturresursutvinning kommer att drabbas särskilt hårt och mest utsatta är urfolk i låglänta önationer och i det arktiska området där förändring sker i en snabbare takt än det globala genomsnittet. Även om urfolkssamhällen ofta anses inneha värdefull kunskap och expertis om hur anpassning till förändring kan ske, ses de sällan som aktiva förändringsagenter utan snarare som passiva offer.

3. Relevans: Att undersöka hur transformationer (det vill säga mer genomgripande omställningar mot hållbara utvecklingsvägar) kan ske inom urfolkssamhällen, hur urfolksperspektiv kan bidra till den teoretiska och praktiska förståelsen av transformationer och hur detta kopplas till social rättvis är därför en nyckelfråga för klimat- och miljöforskningen. Genom deltagandet i etablerandet av ett internationellt nätverk kring dessa frågor (NIECE, baserat i Nya Zeeland och finansierat av Int. Social Science Council) som kopplar samman forskare, praktiker och urfolksrepresentanter från olika urfolkskontexter (däribland Sápmi) skapas förutsättningar för kunskapsutbyte och innovativa forskningsprojekt. Syftet är även att söka vidare finansiering i ISSCs fördjupade ansökningsprocess.
3. Coppélie Cocq

Project participants: Researchers at HUMlab and the Department of Culture and Media Studies. Huvudsökande: Coppélie Cocq, HUMlab. Finansering sökes.

1. Titel: Power and Democracy in Indigenous Use of Online Media: Possibilities and Limitations

2. Ingress: This project explores how indigenous groups in Sápmi, Canada and Australia use online media to engage with power and democracy, and how these modes of use relate to traditional media and offline initiatives. The study develops from the current dramatic expansion in the use of digital media by indigenous groups around the globe. It will investigate the mechanisms through which online media permit the (re)negotiation of democracy, the role of social media for indigenous communities in a globalized and transnational world and the correlations between digital media participation and the exercise of power.

Our approach comprises a critical perspective of the limits of the democratic internet and includes the investigation of structures of power and authority in online media, of normative aspects embedded in discourses about the empowering web and of the excluding effects these may have for community members.

3. Relevance: The implication of the production of knowledge by and within communities that have lacked access to political power is of great significance for the understanding of the way in which online media shape and modify not only communication, but also control over communication and information.

From a methodological perspective, this project bears significance for the Humanities by problematizing the position of the researcher in an increasing global, connected and networked world where new experts take the lead in the production of knowledge.

Research networks

1. Forskarnätverket SweMineTechNet (ett gruvrealistiskt forskarnätverk)

Nätverket består idag av ca 31 forskare med olika ämnesbakgrunder från olika universitet och institutioner. Bland dem är 9 forskare från Umeå Universitet. Nätverket håller på med forskning inom ämnesområdet, anordnar seminarier och möten som handlar om bl.a om gruvor, mineral politik, markanvändning och påverkan på människor.

Nätverket finansieras från Riksbankens Jubileumsfond.

Kontaktperson/koordinator: Martin Hultman, forskare Umeå universitet.

Relevans: Gruvor, mineral politik, markanvändning och påverkan på människor är en global fråga hos urfolk världen över.

2. NorrSam är ett nordligt nätverk för doktorander, "unga" forskare och studenter med intresse för samiska frågor. NorrSam arrangerar seminarier, lunchmöten och träffar där samiskrelaterad forskning står i fokus. 70 forskare är med i nätverket.

Nätverket erbjuder, ersätta kostnader för resa och logi för medlemmar som vill delta i nätverksaktiviteter, men bedriver studier/forskning på annan ort.

Relevans: Ett av NorrSam:s viktigaste prioritetsområden är att förbättra kommunikationen och relationerna mellan internationella forskare och det samiska samhället med intresse för samiskt tematik.

NorrSam stöds av FORTE och Polarforskningssekretariatet.

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