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The power of Indigenous voice and data supports the green transition

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The new policy paper: “Data-Driven Subnational Decision-Making in the Arctic: The Power of Indigenous Voice and Data Supporting a Green Transition” will change the way we view a green transition. Published by a team at the University of Lapland, partners in the Arctic PASSION project.

Credit: C. Sarmik

The new policy paper: “Data-Driven Subnational Decision-Making in the Arctic: The Power of Indigenous Voice and Data Supporting a Green Transition” will change the way we view a green transition. Published by a team at the University of Lapland, partners in the Arctic PASSION project.

The Policy Brief summarizes the initial findings of Arctic PASSION’s work on enhancing evidence-based decision-making at local and regional levels in the Arctic, in relation to two themes: The state of the inclusion of Indigenous knowledge in subnational decision-making; and data availability, needs, and gaps with respect to managing and planning green transitions.

1. With respect to the inclusion of Indigenous Knowledge in local decision-making: Indigenous Peoples’ cooperation, science and governance can benefit from:

• Facilitate awareness among local policy makers about the specific issues and challenges faced by indigenous people in certain areas.

• Increase the number of people with Indigenous identity in administrative bodies.

• Ensure better understanding of Indigenous peoples’ relationship with land and water and facilitate further knowledge exchange between Indigenous peoples, scientists/researchers and policy makers on the practice of incorporating Indigenous perspectives in policies and plans.

• Provide the results of scientific research in a transparent manner showing a broad perspective on the activities to be carried out and how these activities can benefit indigenous and non-indigenous peoples of a particular community.

• Ensure that the inclusion of three parallel perspectives – Indigenous, local and scientific – is the normal approach for developing risk assessments, reports, plans and policies.

2. Regarding data availability, needs, and gaps with respect to managing and planning green transitions at the local government level: There is a need to develop better tools to assess local and global impacts and benefits of green energy investments.

• A comprehensive database that captures green transition planning information and data is needed, reflecting the need for more holistic policy making.

• National and EU policymakers may consider supporting cooperation between cities and the Arctic region with respect to climate mitigation and adaptation. Such collaboration should focus on concrete action and the exchange of specific models, tools and processes, rather than sharing good practices in the abstract. A case study approach may be useful in this context.

• There is a need to invest more in generating data and incorporating information related to social indicators directly related to green transition projects.

The insights above emerged from 30 semi-structured in-depth interviews with a sample of Arctic and sub-Arctic subnational decision makers, rights holders, and stakeholders.

  • Municipality:
    • Rovaniemi, Kemi, Kuusamo (Finland)
    • Lulea, municipality of Stockholm (Sweden)
    • Municipalities of Harstad, Tana, Vardø and Kvænangen (Norway)
    • Municipality of Reykjavik (Iceland)
    • Municipality of Avannaata (Greenland)
    • City & Borough of Juneau, City of Anchorage (Alaska, USA)
  • Arctic Council Permanent Members:
    • Inuit Circumpolar Council of Canada
  • Environmental agency:
    • Norwegian Climate Service Center (Norway)
    • Environment and Climate Change (Canada)
  • Government:
    • Yukon Government, NWT, Nunavut (Canada)
    • Ministry of Local Government and Regional Development of Norway

Study again

That 31 page policy paper

A a handout summarizing the main paper findings

About Arctic PASSION

Contact

Pavel Tkach (email protected)+358402580946, lead author of the policy brief

Adam Stephen (email protected)+358404844298, policy brief contributor


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