ReSDA Atlas

ReSDA Atlas of Arctic Resource Development

Project Updates:


You can find the latest version of the ReSDA Atlas at

If you have any recommendations / suggestions or information that you would like to include on this Atlas please let us know. You can send your information to Valoree Walker at  We appreciate any suggestions you might have for improving this data source.


Many thanks to the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency (CanNor) for their support and financial contribution to assist with the development of a working version of the ReSDA Atlas.  Without this support this project would not have been possible.

A working draft of the ReSDA Atlas was developed by Make IT Solutions and posted on their site at  We also want to thank MakeIT for all the work they have done in creating and building the site.

This is still a work in progress and will require changes and modifications to create something that can support the needs and interests of many groups. We always welcome feedback and suggestions!

 A guidebook has been created to help with understanding and navigating the site. ReSDA Atlas Guide 2016ReSDA Atlas 2016Capture

A summary of all the data that is currently available on the Atlas site can be viewed in the print version of this information. Print version of Atlas Information (PDF)

Mine Summaries (pdf)

ReSDA Atlas Yukon Mine summary coverYukon Mine summaries

This is a summary of the mine sites reviewed for the Yukon.
It contains general description details on the mine,
employment information, location, impacts of the the mine
and links to other information relevant to the mine site.


ReSDA Atlas Nunavut Mine summary coverNunavut Mine Summaries (pdf)

This is a summary of the mine sites reviewed for Nunavut.
It contains general description details on the mine,
employment information, location, impacts of the the mine
and links to other information relevant to the mine site


ReSDA Atlas NWT Mine summary coverNorthwest Territories Mine Summaries (pdf)

This is a summary of the mine sites reviewed for the Northwest Territories.
It contains general description details on the mine,
employment information, location, impacts of the the mine
and links to other information relevant to the mine site


We received funding from CanNor in January 2016 to continue the development of the Atlas.  This involved hiring students to work on the collection of data and information to provide the details of all resource development projects that have operated, are now operating or have been proposed.

Job Posting – More details of the student position  hereEmployment opportunity students ReSDA Atlas 2016-2


Screenshot 2014-05-27 16.16.18A prototype of the Atlas has been developed by SDC Software Company with funding support provided by the Technology Innovation office of the Yukon Research Centre.  The prototype has been developed so that it is an affordable, scalable, Google Map UI with a digital library capacity, and uses open source software to allow for a diverse range of users. The next phase of this work will involve compiling data and sources of information related to ReSDA and similar research areas.  Funding is being sought to support this next phase and build a comprehensive data set for this online searchable data library.  This prototype can be viewed at or by clicking on the map shown above.

We appreciate any comments or suggestions on how this tool can be designed to support communities and researchers to provide a central place with relevant sources of information and data.

The Project

The Resources and Sustainable Development in the Arctic (ReSDA) Network will make its research findings and related information available in a quick and easily accessible manner through the creation of an online resource tool, a ReSDA web-based atlas. Using a map of the Circumpolar North as its home page, the locations of major resource development projects will be listed on the map. Viewers would then be able to click on the site they are interested in and a range of relevant information about the project and the local communities and environment, along with new ReSDA research findings, will appear as a clickable list. A printed atlas will also be created for distribution.


There are many ways to communicate research in northern communities. Although workshops with face-to-face communication are a strong focus in ReSDA, we also need to find ways to share information more quickly and cost effectively. One effective way is to use the internet and develop an information sharing page, often referred to as an “atlas.” The objective of the “Atlas of Arctic Resource Development” would be to gather and analyze information on conditions, impacts, and benefits of resource developments and make that information publically available through our website. The ReSDA Atlas of Arctic Resource Development would be a virtual “one-stop” place for access to information on how resource development conditions vary across the North. Using an interactive map as a base we are hoping to include stories from communities, videos and audio clips from partners and participants, raw data for use by other researchers and guidebooks for communities, organizations and governments seeking more “how to” information.mcr_0001_1997_browse

The Atlas would provide partners in northern communities, various levels of government, and industry, with quick access to important information relating to resource development in the north. It will equally be accessible to the world and will represent the international repository for all ReSDA projects being undertaking in the Pan-Arctic region.

Existing Partners

ReSDA and its Northern partners and co-investigators will form the core capacity for the Atlas creation but the idea for this project has been developed in conjunction with several other partners. The Earth Institute at Columbia University have expressed a desire to assist with both the technical challenges posed by the Atlas as well as providing base data relating to the environmental conditions. The GRID Arendal office of the United Nations Environmental Programme has volunteered their substantial knowledge in web-based cartography for the project and the University of the Arctic will assist in both data collection and promotion of this information source. Funding was recently announced by the National Science Foundation of the United States for a ReSDA-related research network, Arctic-FROST, and they will use the Atlas for the dissemination of their research findings. Similarly, the ReSDA network is working with European-based researchers to develop another ReSDA-related project, funded by the Horizon 2020 program, which would also use the web based Atlas for the dissemination of its research findings.


The work on the Atlas would start as soon as supplementary funding is identified. It is hoped this would be sometime before the end of 2013. Initial cartographic work would take place in early 2014. From May 2014 to September 2014 a series of analytical surveys will be undertaken to provide any core data/information that is not already provided by existing ReSDA research.  This research would be quickly uploaded into the Atlas so that the Atlas could be “launched” at an appropriate Arctic Council meeting during the Canadian Chairmanship.

Core data for the Atlas

  1. Conditions :  Many of ReSDA’s recently completed gap analysis reports noted that it would be useful to have information about how the conditions surrounding resource development varies across the Circumpolar North. The core data for the Atlas would therefore include core data relating to conditions. These would include data on:
        • Regulatory regimes
    • Ownership patterns
    • Regional economic development policies
    • Subsistence economies
    • IBAs in Canada and Alaska
  2. Impacts :  Almost all of the ReSDA gap analysis noted the need to collect and make available existing information on resource development impacts on Arctic communities. A comparative analysis of this information would enable us to identify impacts that need to be avoided and to identify “best case” examples. These analytical surveys could start out by developing a list of all potential community impacts of resource development identified in previous research. This initial list would not be limited to the Arctic. It would use research carried out in other similar regions. This list could then be applied against Arctic development projects to see if data on these impacts exists or not. The data that exist would be made available through the Atlas. These impacts surveys would deal with many of the issues mentioned in the gap analyses such as:
    • General social impacts
    • Economic impacts
    • Cultural and subsistence economy impacts
    • Environmental impacts
  3. Benefits : The benefits of resource development are often mentioned by industry and governments but as the ReSDA gap analysis reports have indicated, very little systematic analysis has been done on what benefits exist and how these benefits vary by project. A comparative analysis of the benefits flowing to communities from resource developments would be useful to make available to communities so that they could make judgements about likely benefits and about different models that are used to provide benefits. (Note – It may be wise to have the same teams conduct both the impacts survey and the benefits survey when they are dealing with similar subjects – ie economic impacts)
    • Revenue distributions
    • Employment benefits
    • Education and training
    • Support for cultural vitality, the subsistence economy, and the integration of Traditional Knowledge
    • Infrastructure support
  4. Baseline data used to measure impacts and change: Previous to the gap analysis work, many of our Northern partners indicated a need for basic reliable baseline data relating to social and economic change. This is necessary in order to evaluate the impact/benefits resulting from resource development. Partners also noted the need for baseline data that could be collected and analyzed by communities themselves. There are several projects currently underway dealing with baseline data. The ReSDA Atlas could be used to assemble the results of these projects so that they are readily available for individuals looking at resource development impacts and benefits. Work to add this data to the Atlas would include:
    • A survey of social indicators used in Environmental/Social and Economic Impact Assessments
    • A survey of community-based social and economic monitoring projects