Issues and Objectives
The Chair's scientific programme is articulated around two major issues of human development in aboriginal communities in the Arctic: 1) regional disparities; 2) social inequality and poverty. It seeks to understand the social origins, the workings and the consequences of these phenomena by centering its theoretical approach on a humanistic vision of development.
The Chair's scientific programme therefore has as its objectives: 1) to describe, analyze and interpret the living conditions of the modern Arctic communities and of the aboriginal people and their transformations through comparative research at the circumpolar and regional level; 2) to delve deeper into the relationships between the economic condition of the residents of the Arctic and their capacity to increase their control over their own fate primarily on an individual and social level; 3) to participate in the collective debate and the formulation of public policies by making its knowledge public through publications, conferences, research reports produced in layman's language and widely distributed, and sustained participation in the public debate on the international, national and regional level.
The work that the Chair's team proposes to undertake aims to solve certain current enigmas relative to the development of the circumpolar Arctic: Why is it that, in several regions, economic growth does not result in the communities increasing their control over their own fate? What is the cause of these disparities in the economic and human development of the circumpolar regions? What is the cause of the uneven distribution of wealth, the economic and social stratification, and poverty? What are the social forces in play that crystallizes them? How are they reproduced, or modified? Why is it that, in several regions, human development does not occur at the same pace as economic development? Why is it that economic development produces poverty and exclusion? What are the factors and processes involved? What are the consequences of these disparities and inequality on the circumpolar, regional and familial level, namely on the collective and individual capacity to control their own fate?