Press Release

UQAT Environmental Sciences Graduate Published in World-renowned Journal

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The research results of Annie Claude Bélisle, a graduate in Environmental Sciences at the Université du Québec en Abitibi-Témiscamingue (UQAT) were recently published in the People and Nature journal.  This renowned journal publishes papers from all fields of research exploring the relationship between humans and nature. The paper, available in English, presents the results of a partnership between UQAT, the Abitibiwinni First Nation Council and the Oujé-Bougoumou Cree Nation.

Strengthening dialogue between different environmental actors
The research that Bélisle conducted as part of her doctorate at UQAT’s Institut de recherche sur les forêts (IRF) (Forest Research Institute – French only) address the major environmental changes taking place in boreal landscapes and affecting Indigenous peoples for whom the land is a foundation of identity, culture and way of life. Ecosystem health is also an issue of concern to the scientific community, including IRF researchers. Thus, this issue was analysed from the perspective of Indigenous communities and the scientific community in order to better assess the consequences of these changes and then mitigate their impacts.

Interviews with Indigenous experts on the territory from the communities of Pikogan (Abitibiwinni) and Oujé-Bougoumou were used in combination with an analysis of topics of interest to scientific experts on the territory. The Director of the Territory and Environment Department for the Abitibiwinni First Nation Council, Benoit Croteau, has been a partner in this research project, having been involved in his community for many years. Natural Resources Canada researcher Sylvie Gauthier, whose career has been dedicated to the study of boreal landscapes, brought her extensive knowledge of the research community to contribute to this study. This collaborative work made it possible to highlight the convergences and divergences between the different perspectives, while helping to enhance dialogue between indigenous and scientific perspectives on the territory and its transformation. Annie Claude Bélisle's work was carried out under the direction of Hugo Asselin, professor and director of UQAT’s École d'études autochtones (School of Indigenous Studies).

The paper titled Integrating Indigenous and scientific perspectives on environmental changes: Insights from boreal landscapes is available on the website of the British Ecological Society, a collective dedicated to promoting the science of ecology since 1913. With a community of 6,000 members worldwide, the British Ecological Society has eight world-renowned journals, including People and Nature.

Last update : 31 mai 2018