Community Consultations on the PAWS Project

Written by Anna Bunce Consultations for the People, Animals, Water, and Sustenance (PAWS) project continued last week in Iqaluit as Dr. Jan Sargeant and myself were in town meeting with community stakeholders to determine the priorities for the quantitative portion of the work. As a goal of this work is to provide useful, relevant information to stakeholders we have been consulting with a variety of stakeholders in Iqaluit since the idea for this project first came to be. Last week was just another part of our consultation, but an exciting one. Dr. Sargeant and I presented a series of potential scenarios to stakeholders and asked them to help prioritize which pathogens we should test for and what sources we should test. With so many options it immediately became clear that we would need something to break down all the options, and so a “menu” of sorts was created, laying out the options of what pathogens we could look at and which sources we could test for these various pathogens. The outcome was a very productive and informative meeting, where we were able to brainstorm ideas and talk about the pros and cons of each possible scenario. After having a “dotmocracy” session, where stakeholders ranked their preferences using a series of dots, we have a clearer idea of priority areas and are looking forward to following up with more meetings in March. A big thank you again to all the stakeholders who took time out of their busy day to meet with us!

Anna Bunce is the project manager for the PAWS Project. Having recently completed her Masters at McGill University looking at how Inuit women are experiencing and adapting to climate change in Iqaluit, she is excited to continue working in Iqaluit, Nunavut with the PAWS project.