University of Oulu

Soikkeli, A. (2021). Human–environmental relationships in the Arctic: Mapping and analyzing Shishmaref. The Journal of Rural and Community Development, 16(2), 43–63.

Human–environmental relationships in the Arctic : mapping and analyzing Shishmaref

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Author: Soikkeli, Anu1
Organizations: 1University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 1.5 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Brandon University, 2021
Publish Date: 2021-10-26


This article examines the process of analyzing the Arctic indigenous village Shishmaref and evaluates the applicability of Western planning analysis methods for the interpretation of the living environment. The analysis approach is partly phenomenological, i.e., the analysis of the village is based on the researcher’s own observations. At the same time, the aspect of the community and its views on the environment are examined. The framework studies the role of the architect from the perspective of participatory design. Based on this research, Western design models do not seem suitable for indigenous village planning, but a genuine participatory approach is needed from the beginning of the planning process, i.e., also in the analysis phase. This requires enough time and working on-site; therefore, a slow planning process is needed. Accepting the importance of traditional knowledge as part of the planning gives a new direction to the design of Arctic indigenous villages, especially to their relocation.

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Series: Journal of rural and community development
ISSN: 1712-8277
ISSN-E: 1712-8277
ISSN-L: 1712-8277
Volume: 16
Issue: 2
Pages: 43 - 63
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 211 Architecture
Copyright information: © Journal of Rural and Community Development. Copyright for articles published in this journal is retained by the authors, with first publication rights granted to the journal. By virtue of their appearance in this open access journal, articles are free to use, with proper attribution, in educational and other non-commercial settings.