Inuit land based economy

Measuring the land based economy of Inuit communities in Nunavik

Shea2014Project Leader:
Shea Shirley, Master’s Candidate at the University of Saskatchewan

Update July 2016

Shea completed her Masters thesis in June 2016.
A copy of her thesis “Barriers to Wildlife Harvesting Among Aboriginal Communities in Canada and Alaska” is available online at


This research is measuring the contribution of the land based economy to the livelihoods of the Nunavik communities of Qaqtaq, Inukjuaq and Kangiqsualujjuaq. In this context the land-based economy involves the harvest, distribution and receipt of country foods between households, multi-households, communities, and HSP networks. This project is being carried out in cooperation with Dr. Thierry Rodon, and is being funded by Makivik Corporation.


  1. To measure the total contribution that wildlife harvesting provides to the household and community economies of Qaqtaq, Inukjuaq and Kangiqsualujjuaq over a 1-year period.
  2. Compare 2012-2013 harvest results to the studies conducted between 1976-1980.
  3. Identify the barriers that may impede households from participating in wildlife harvesting activities.
  4. Identify the estimated cash expenditures households devote to wildlife harvesting over a one-year period.
  5. Determine the extent to which community members use gas subsidies provided by Makivik Corporation and KRGs to support wildlife harvesting.
  6. Determine the extent to which HSP are used to support harvesting and how HSP programs are used to alleviate food insecurity within Inuit households.

The results of this research will lend to a more informed understanding of Aboriginal food security in the Arctic and Sub-Arctic Regions of North America.

Research Funding:
Year 1   2013-2014: ReSDA
Year 2   2014-2015: ReSDA

For more information contact:
Shea Shirley
MES Candidate
University of Saskatchewan

David Natcher
Supervisor/Principle Investigator
Associate Professor
College of Agriculture and Bioresources
University of Saskatchewan
Tel. (306) 966-4045