The Thematic Network on Local-Scale Planning, Climate Change, and Resilience was established at the Council of UArctic in September 2019. The University of Alberta, represented by UAlberta North, participates in six other UArctic thematic networks. This is the first Thematic Network led by the University. UAlberta North is providing initial funding support for the inaugural activities of this new thematic network.

“The formation of this thematic network is timely as local government decision-makers face a pressing need to develop adaptation strategies that minimize the risks arising from climate change,” said Anita Dey Nuttall, associate director of UAlberta North. “It will build partnerships with community, local, and regional leaders, contribute to policy development and implementation, and identify opportunities for enhancing community resilience.”

This network connects researchers with an eye on policy and governance, who are working with northern communities from across the Arctic, and are concerned with processes of adaptation and environmental resilience. The communities range in size from large urban centres to small, isolated populations, with a special focus on Indigenous forms of community planning for climate resilience.

“In the battle against climate change, it is very important to engage at both local and global levels and, in particular, to involve local stakeholders in research, finding the solutions and innovations that would help them locally, and, in the end, globally. Therefore, I am very pleased to welcome a new UArctic Thematic Network on Local-Scale Planning, Climate Change, and Resilience, led by Jeff Birchall, said Kirsi Latola, director of thematic networks at UArctic. “Capacity building as a part of the activities of this thematic network will be key to supporting local and Indigenous peoples resilience and adaptation—the importance of which cannot be highlighted enough.”

You can read more about the new network here.