As traditional knowledge holders, Inuit women have always held important knowledge of their environment and the animals and resources of that environment. In their roles within the traditional economy as the clothing makers, women have held extensive knowledge about the seasonal cycles and the animals which sustained their families and communities. This important cultural knowledge held by Inuit women is undermined by colonization.
While the effects of climate change are readily apparent to Inuit women and their families, women’s specific knowledge has been undervalued and underappreciated in mainstream literature on the subject. However, the underrepresentation of women voices in various initiatives and processes—including climate change vulnerability assessments and community action plans—is not reflective of the high level of women’s leadership on climate change issues in the North.
Pauktuutit views women as important leaders and knowledge-holders in the fight to mitigate the negative impacts of climate change in their communities and beyond. Understanding this, Pauktuutit works to ensure that Inuit women’s perspectives are understood and integrated within the broader conversation about the ongoing adaptations within the changing Arctic environment.