News

Mourning Etok

Snowchange joins in mourning of the loss of Charles Edwardsen, Jr., also known across Alaska and the Arctic as ”Etok”. Etok was a prominent, radical leader of the North Slope Inupiaq and a central figure in the various stages of land rights struggles of the Alaska Indigenous peoples.

Etok worked with Snowchange since 2002. In the period from 2004 to 2005 he worked with us to organise the international conference ”Snowchange 2005” in Anchorage, Alaska, USA.

We are forever indebted to him for a strategic view of how the northern peoples can address the challenges of our complex times.

Charles Edwardsen, Jr. passed away last Thursday 7th May, 2015 in his whaling camp. We are thankful to Victoria Hykes-Steere for passing the news.

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Short European Speaking Tour Announced

Inuiksuit stone statue from Igloolik, Nunavut, Canada. John Macdonald, 2014.

Inuiksuit stone statue from Igloolik, Nunavut, Canada. John Macdonald, 2014.

Snowchange staff will appear in several events in Western Europe at the end of May and early June.

28th – 29th May, 2015 Snowchange will take part in the panel discussions on Arctic issues in Copenhagen, Denmark, organised by the HERA: Arctic Encounters project.

29th-30th May we ll participate in the high level panel “Imagining Northern Futures – What should the future look like for the people of the North?”. Other speakers include Lesley Anne Rose, Steve McGillivray and Tim Ingold.

31st May to 3rd June community visits and coordination events will be made in Scotland with the UK Snowchange Coordinator Chris Madine on the next steps of the Siberian and other Eurasian work.

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Eastern Sámi Atlas Wins a Major International Prize

Eastern Sámi family camp in Seitsul Island, Kola Peninsula, in late 1800s. Photo: Courtesy of the Snowchange Co-op, 2014

Eastern Sámi family camp in Seitsul Island, Kola Peninsula, in late 1800s. Photo: Courtesy of the Snowchange Co-op, 2014

The Eastern Sámi Atlas, originally released in 2011, with a second printing in 2013, has received a major international scholarly prize, the “Gold ABS Past Presidents Book Award” of the Association of the Borderland Studies, based in the USA.

The Association for Borderlands Studies is the premiere scholarly association focusing exclusively on border issues. The ABS was formed with an emphasis on the United States-Mexico borderlands, but today the association is truly global in its scope and its membership. As an association devoted to the greater understanding of borders, we embrace perspectives from all border researchers worldwide, and we celebrate multidisciplinary approaches engaging geographers, political scientists, sociologists, economists, anthropologists and other social scientists.

About the Gold Award

The ABS Past Presidents’ Book Award is presented to any published monographic (single or multiple authored, including edited) book in the social and natural sciences, and humanities involving original research on borders, borderlands and border regions, and reviewed in the Journal of Borderlands Studies. Each year there is a Gold Award, a Silver Award and a Bronze Award. The Gold Award consists of a plaque, a certificate and a year’s free membership in ABS. Also, the winner of the Gold Award chairs the ABS book award committee for the next year and is the ABS guest and keynote speaker at the next annual meeting. Snowchange representatives will be flown to the USA to receive the award.

Past Recognitions

The Eastern Sámi Atlas together with its companion piece, the Näätämö and Ponoi river Collaborative Management Plan released in 2013 represent new ways of capturing, documenting and sharing Indigenous knowledge in the European North. Sámi knowledge holders are seen as key partners who are positioned as co-researchers when the Arctic nature, societies and ecosystems are described. Ultimately, they are the best interpreters of the local Indigenous knowledge according to this methodology.

The Eastern Sámi Atlas has won previously major prizes, including “Skolt Sámi of the Year 2011“, “Kekrinpäiväpalkinto” for a best book on traditions in Finland. It is to be translated into Finnish, Sámi and Russian this decade.

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Näätämö Sámi Project in National News in Finland

Skolt Sámi fishermen Jouko Moshnikoff and Teijo Feodoroff at winter nets in Spring 2014. Photo: Gleb Raygorodetsky, 2015.

Skolt Sámi fishermen Jouko Moshnikoff and Teijo Feodoroff at winter nets in Spring 2014. Photo: Gleb Raygorodetsky, 2015.

YLE, the national news agency in Finland featured the Skolt Sámi and Snowchange Näätämö River Co-Managment Project yesterday in main news. The link to the news is here.

Main components of the news include:

- New partnership with the Sámi, Snowchange and ELOKA Project on digital mapping of the watershed

- Next steps in restoration and implementation of co-management steps

- Further documentation of Indigenous land use and occupancy of the basin

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Mourning the Loss of a Prominent Indigenous Knowledge Holder from Siberia

Oktjabrina Naumova, an Evenk knowledge holder from Iengra, Republic of Sakha-Yakutia, Russia

Oktjabrina Naumova, an Evenk knowledge holder from Iengra, Republic of Sakha-Yakutia, Russia

Snowchange Cooperative joins the village of Iengra and the Evenk families in mourning the loss of a prominent traditional knowledge holder, mrs. Oktjabrina Naumova. She passed away last friday, 10th April, 2015 in Republic of Sakha-Yakutia, Siberia, Russia.

Mrs. Naumova worked in various positions in the village of Iengra, including teaching at the school. She was masterful in Evenk traditional handicrafts. Snowchange worked with mrs. Naumova to organise the international conference Snowchange 2007: Traditions of the North in Iengra and Neriungri.

Additionally mrs. Naumova was a co-researcher in the Snowchange oral history work in Iengra between 2005 and 2010 carried out according to the wishes of the Evenk leadership and the Institute of the Indigenous Peoples, in Yakutsk.

Mrs. Naumova was also internationally known for her work to assist on the of the most powerful traditional knowledge holders, Elder Vasiliev from Iengra. Mr. Vasiliev passed away in Autumn 2013. Together they travelled in many parts of Russia and foreign countries, including the UK, sharing the Evenk traditions and culture in many events and occasions.

Snowchange sends condolences to the family and relatives of mrs. Naumova, on behalf of the whole international network of communities and peoples in the movement. We will make sure the lifework of mrs. Naumova is carried on, for example in the future plans to create the Evenk Atlas of Iengra.

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