Intensive research in Inuit Nunangat has brought benefits and challenges to Inuit communities and organizations. Improving communication and understanding between researchers and communities has been identified as a strategy to support relevant research that includes and benefits Inuit. Most scientific research projects in Nunavut are subject to licensing under Nunavut’s Scientists Act, a territorial legislation administered by the Nunavut Innovation and Research Institute (NIRI) since 1994. NIRI has developed a research licensing database containing details on more than 1300 research projects undertaken in Nunavut over 25 years in the natural, physical, health, and social sciences (including studies of Inuit knowledge, culture, and language). This presentation reviews preliminary results from analyzing the digital licensing database, including research trends across Nunavut since 2004, community research intensity, geographic and topical trends, and an assessment of how researchers are reporting on their work.
This analysis provides insight into the current state of research in Nunavut and how it has changed over the last fourteen years, providing baseline data on recent research trends to support decision-makers, communities, and researchers in moving forward with research policies, projects, and administration. One of NIRI’s goals is ensuring that research is a resource for the well-being of Nunavummiut. Through this project NIRI is developing better metrics to track research impacts and benefits in Nunavut and improving the research licensing process. Thus, NIRI aims to make research results more accessible to Nunavummiut, foster better Inuit engagement in research, reduce community research fatigue, and encourage research on priority issues for Inuit.