Community and Economic Development in Arctic Canada (CEDAC) - A Qualitative Study of Resource Development Impacts on Economic and Social Systems in Pond Inlet, Nunavut

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Title: Community and Economic Development in Arctic Canada (CEDAC) - A Qualitative Study of Resource Development Impacts on Economic and Social Systems in Pond Inlet, Nunavut
Authors: Ritsema, Roger
Date: 2014
Abstract: Climate change and global commodity demands have increased access to and feasibility of extracting natural resources in Arctic regions. As a result, Nunavut is now poised to compete on the global market for oil, gas, minerals, and precious metals. The impacts of increasing resource exploration and development activities on nearby communities therefore require study. In particular, new methodologies are needed to explore how adjacent communities can harness the economic potential of resource extraction toward goals of self-sufficiency, sustainability, and cultural continuity while minimizing the associated risks. Using the predominantly Inuit community of Pond Inlet, Nunavut, as a case study, this thesis uses an article format to introduce the Harvard Project on American Indian Economic Development’s ‘nation building’ conceptual framework, as well as a post-colonial theory to explore resource development in the Canadian Arctic context. The nation building framework is a well-established and validated approach to understanding economic development in Indigenous society that has been refined and used in hundreds of case studies over the past three decades. Based on interviews with residents and regional decision-makers, it was found that the community of Pond Inlet currently lacks the self-determination and effective institutions needed to implement local strategies for prosperity due to a number of complex factors, including educational and capacity deficiencies; infrastructure needs; as well as a centralized decision-making structure that poorly matches local culture and serves to alienate residents. As a result, the anticipated resource boom in Arctic Canada is in danger of indirectly repeating the colonial legacy of assimilation, this time justified by contemporary economic reasons, instead of providing the region with an inclusive, balanced economic development approach in line with local ideas for development and cultural continuity.This thesis follows the article format and is organized into four chapters: Chapter 1 is an introductory chapter. Chapter 2 is the first of two articles in the thesis titled: Community and Economic Development in Arctic Canada (CEDAC) – Understanding factors that contribute toward self-determined sustainable community development. Chapter 3 is the second of two articles in the thesis titled: Community and Economic Development in Arctic Canada (CEDAC) – Mining in Nunavut: A new path to prosperity or re‐paving old paths of colonial rule? Chapter 4 concludes the thesis.
URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10393/31751
http://dx.doi.org/10.20381/ruor-6510
CollectionThèses, 2011 - // Theses, 2011 -
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