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Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2017

Sami-state collaboration in the governance of cumulative effects assessment: A critical action research approach

Larsen, Rasmus Klocker; Raitio, Kaisa; Stinnerbom, Marita; Wik-Karlsson, Jenny


Indigenous-state collaboration in the governance of cumulative effects assessment (CEA) is often hampered not only by legacies of colonialism and inequality but also disagreement on what the 'CEA governance problem' is in the first place. In this paper, we draw on critical theories on dialogue and collaboration to present a novel approach to joint problem analysis between Sami reindeer herders and civil servants in Swedish permitting authorities on mining, wind energy and forestry. We discuss process design choices, insights on CEA governance and ways to tackle these barriers in practice. We argue that indigenous-state collaboration may play a constructive role in improving CEA governance, including the recognition of indigenous peoples' rights. However, this requires a process that carves out new spaces for exploring divergent problem definitions and supports the participants in challenging institutionalized inequalities within their positioned realities. (C) 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


Cumulative effects; Impact assessment; Reindeer herding; Sami; Action research; Collaboration

Published in

Environmental Impact Assessment Review
2017, Volume: 64, pages: 67-76

      Sustainable Development Goals

      SDG10 Reduced inequalities

      UKÄ Subject classification

      Social Sciences Interdisciplinary

      Publication Identifiers


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