Rivers resistance resilience: Sustainable futures in Sápmi and in other indigenous peoples’ territories

The overall aim of this research project is to analyze the sociotechnical aspects of human security, sustainability for, resistance and resilience of local and indigenous peoples in (post)colonial settings in regard to industrial exploitations of riverscapes/waterscapes.

The project analyses the interactions between different groups of human beings; Sámi communities, individuals, associations, on the one hand and local and state authorities as well as industrial companies and authorities on the other. Interaction between human society and the natural world goes beyond the control of one by the other. The project aims for a broader understanding of agency, one in which humans, animals, nature and technological artefacts act as agents of change.

The geographical focus is on the Swedish part of Sábme – the Lule, Ume, Kalix and Torne rivers. We look at wind power, mining, hydropower and other large scale industrial ventures. Comparisons are made with similar colonial settings in Japan, Norway, Finland, Australia, the US, India and Canada. Apart from the cross-disciplinary collaboration between humanities, engineering, natural and social sciences, the supradisciplinarity of this project is a decolonizing methodology. An important part is collaboration between indigenous/Sámi scholars and allies and Sámi reindeer herders, associations, activists, individuals, artists and filmmakers as well as authorities and industrial companies.

In 2013 the Technoscience Research Group was established in line with the aims and methodologies of the research project.

Funded by Formas 2012-2015.

Researcher: May-Britt Öhman

Senast uppdaterad: 2022-10-14