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Transforming Arctic Conservation Through Social Innovation

Societal Implications of Genomics Research
Genome Centre(s):
Genome Prairie
Project Leader(s):
Douglas Clark (University of Saskatchewan)
Fiscal Year Project Launched: 
Project Description: 

Recent assessments show that vulnerability of Arctic social-ecological systems is at an all-time high and change is accelerating. The 2016 Arctic Resilience Assessment (Arctic Council 2016) identified governance as the key determinant of whether Arctic societies could maintain resilience of the social-ecological systems (SES) they depend upon. However, significant institutional barriers to achieving good governance remain and may even be re-intensifying in some Arctic states. Unfortunately, an ingenuity gap exists (Homer-Dixon 1995, Westley et al. 2011) since biophysical change is now outpacing improvements in Arctic governance regimes (Kofinas et al. 2013). This mismatch—where biophysical processes are “fast” variables, and institutional responses are “slow,” instead of the other way around—is novel terrain that the development of theory hasn’t kept pace with (Young et al. 2006). Our overarching goal is to address that ingenuity gap by deliberately trying to accelerate the pace of governance improvement in the Canadian Arctic. The Transforming Arctic conservation through social innovation (TACSI) project’s goal is to create opportunities for Arctic communities to decolonize and challenge control of wildlife research and monitoring methods, along with their application.