University of Oulu

Hiedanpää, J., Saijets, J., Jounela, P. et al. Beliefs in Conflict: The Management of Teno Atlantic Salmon in the Sámi Homeland in Finland. Environmental Management 66, 1039–1058 (2020).

Beliefs in conflict : the management of Teno Atlantic salmon in the Sámi homeland in Finland

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Author: Hiedanpää, Juha1; Saijets, Joni2; Jounela, Pekka1;
Organizations: 1Natural Resources Institute Finland (Luke), Turku, Finland
2University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 3.6 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Springer Nature, 2020
Publish Date: 2021-01-25


The subarctic Teno River is one of the most significant spawning rivers for Atlantic salmon in Europe. In 2009, research indicated that the Teno salmon stock was in a weak state, and concern about the future of Atlantic salmon in the Teno River arose on both sides of the river, in Finland and Norway. In 2017, the governments ratified the new Teno fishing agreement (Teno Fishing Act 2017). The agreement aimed to reduce the fishing volume by 30%, and the new regulations concerned all users, including the indigenous Sámi, other locals, tourists, and fishing entrepreneurs. This triggered concern and anger in the Sámi community and among other locals generally. The dispute raised a question concerning the management of Teno salmon. We conducted a Q inquiry with 43 statements, covering aspects of interest, knowledge, management, and policy needs related to Teno salmon. We hypothesised that the key reason for the management tensions lay in how scientific and traditional knowledge fitted administrative knowledge requirements. By using self-organising maps (SOMs), four webs of beliefs emerged from the data: traditional Sámi fishing; salmon protection; equal economic opportunity; and evidence-based decision-making. We also further analysed the statements according to how they reproduced diverging and similar beliefs. We discuss the identity-related struggle, rights, and stakes and the underlying issue of confidence and respect.

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Series: Environmental management
ISSN: 0364-152X
ISSN-E: 1432-1009
ISSN-L: 0364-152X
Volume: 66
Pages: 1039 - 1058
DOI: 10.1007/s00267-020-01374-6
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 520 Other social sciences
616 Other humanities
Funding: We thank the Arctic Academy Programme (ARKTIKO, 2014–2020) of the Academy of Finland for funding the work (project no. 286334). We would also like to thank all the participants in the study. Open access funding provided by Natural Resources Institute Finland (LUKE).
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