Arctic snow school provides scientists with education on snow from elders, knowledge-keepers

An Arctic snow school in Nunavut is providing a group of young scientists and students with a unique education on Arctic snow. The school was set up by Université de Sherbrooke Professor Alexandre Langlois and Université Laval Professor Florent Domine to bring Indigenous knowledge and western science together. The organisers explained that the purpose of the school “is to help train a new generation of scientists capable of solving the complex problems of a changing North.” The scientists are taking part in fieldwork and learning more about the Arctic through the lived experiences of elders, hunters, and knowledge-holders. This strengthens an understanding of snow and the Arctic environment to support research related to climate change. “Inuit have a lot of personal observations that may not be done in scientific ways, but they are useful to scientists,” said Manny Kudlak, an Inuk from Sachs Harbour in the Inuvialuit Settlement Region. “We do live in a bubble in the Arctic, where our lack of communication with the outside world is one of our biggest hurdles[. …] Partnering like this means that the perspectives of the local communities are taken into account in the research, and the benefits can go to them too.”

The Guardian | AlJazeera