The Arctic Rivers Project: Using an Equitable Co-Production Framework for Integrating Meaningful Community Engagement and Science to Understand Climate Impacts
The Arctic and rivers located in the Arctic and subarctic are warming due to climate change. To understand the impacts this warming will have on people, partnering with impacted Indigenous communities in the region is important. It is also important that these partnerships are ethical and equitable and produce science that is actionable.
This paper discusses efforts undertaken by a specific project, the Arctic Rivers Project, to conduct ethical and equitable research with Indigenous communities and generate science that is useful to those communities. Through this research our goal is to better understand potential future impacts of climate change on rivers, fish, and Indigenous communities in central northern Alaska and the Yukon Territory in Canada.
To achieve this goal, the project formed an Indigenous Advisory Council (IAC) and together developed guidelines for how we can work collaboratively with Indigenous communities. Our specific process of forming an IAC and guidelines is, to our knowledge, a new way to approach collaborative research when working across a large geographic area. We present our process here so that it may provide an example for other research efforts.