The Arctic Resilience Youth Leadership Workshop brought together Indigenous youth from the Circumpolar North in Arendal, Norway between 15 and 19 August 2022.

A total of 49 indigenous students from Alaska, Canada, Greenland, Finland, Sweden and Norway applied to participate in the workshop on Arctic management and resilience. The workshop is part of the ongoing collaboration between the International Center for Reindeer Husbandry, UArctic EALAT Institute, World Reindeer Herders, Harvard University, Tufts University and Boaššu Innovation FoodLab.

Deep connections exist between Indigenous peoples and their environment, making them unique knowledge holders. Indigenous herders, hunters and gatherers have a lot of knowledge about their own food systems, land, water and environment. Drastic climate change in the Arctic requires monitoring and understanding of climate change and ways to increase the socio-ecological resilience of the circumpolar communities. Resilience thinking is a way of discussing adaptation to climate change in the North that includes the capacity of a social-ecological system to absorb or resist disturbances and other stressors while maintaining its structure and functions. The workshop is therefore a space for Arctic Indigenous youth to build capacity and create a network of peers to support local communities in being resilient in the face of climate change's rapid and dramatic consequences. The Arctic Indigenous people's ability to adapt helps them deal with uncertainty and shock. The workshop addresses all these pressing issues and provides the Indigenous students with a platform for capacity building, training, sharing knowledge and promoting skills to sustain local communities.

This time Arendal was hosting 20 selected participants with support from the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. When additional funding is available, more applicants from across the circumpolar region are welcome to participate in the future stages of the training course. The next session will take place at Harvard University in January 2023. 

Svein D Mathiesen 90524116
Anders Oskal 99450010
Rockford Weitz
Jennifer Spence

Read the original press release here.