Research database

Project information
Project title
Land Use Change among indigenous pastoralists. Mapping historic land use in Northern landscapes. (LUMANOR)
Project leader
Stine Barlindhaug, Norwegian Institute for Cultural Heritage Research
Geographical localization of the research project in decimal degrees (max 5 per project, ex. 70,662°N and 23,707°E)
Location Latitude Longitude Norway, Finnmark 70.473295 25.065308 70.441138 24.790649 70.081235 24.867554 70.211824 24.411621 Russia, Yamal 70.001340 67.104492 70.299767 69.389648 68.410805 71.499023 67.887434 68.686523 Mongolia 45.471207 104.765625 44.664258 104.831543 44.711122 107.358398 45.563583 107.248535


Andrei Marin, Norwegian University of Life Sciences 


Zoia Ravna (PhD student), Norwegian Institute for Cultural Heritage Research

Administrative responsible:


Carsten Paludan-Müller, NIKU

Funding Source

The project is associated with the JPI Climate-funded project HUMan-ANimal Relations Under Climate Change in NORthern Eurasia (HUMANOR) in collaboration with;

Arctic Centre, University of Lapland, Rovaniemi, Finland

University of Aberdeen, Scotland

Arctic Studies Centre, Salekhard, Russia

University of Uppsala, Sweden


Ájtte, Swedish Mountain and Sámi Museum, Jokkmokk

Summary of Results

In accordance with the project plan presented in the application, the main activity  in 2016 has been on in depth fieldwork in Finnmark and Mongolia and processing and analyses on the Russian video- and interview material.  

In the Finnmark case we realized that the need for additional mapping with older herders was needed before the actual ground-truthing based on surveying in the landscapes could take place. We have done more in depth documenting of historic land use on maps in collaboration with elder herders in Skáiddeduottar siida. In addition we have documented knowledge related to cause and effect relationship to past land use changes as well as their thoughts related to possible drivers for future land use changes. Reindeer herders have unpredictable working hours making it difficult to plan many interviews during a short visit from a researcher. The mapping has thus been undertaken by one of the board members in the Siida who could use natural opportunities throughout the year (eg. during calf marking in the summer and slaughtering in the autumn) when families comes together for a period. This work will continue until December 15th and results have not yet been analysed.


During 2016, the research for the Mongolia-case study included field research in August-September and data analysis in September –November. The field research focused on continuing the recording of life-histories with older herders regarding adaptations to environmental constrains (e.g. extreme weather events) throughout their careers. The herders selected had insights on at least two socio-economic contexts (the socialist system of 1921-1990) and the subsequent capitalist system. Some of them had interesting inputs about the herding system pre-collectivisation (before 1950) and as such provided interesting information about the influence of the larger socio-economic system on the ability of the pastoralist system to adapt to climate change. The other major element of the fieldwork was to operationalize the photovoice method. After training one family in the method last autumn, data was now collected in the form of pictures they have taken on the topic ‘Important opportunities and constrains in the life of herders in our district’. Digital photos were collected and discussed with the authors in a closed group (discussing pictures on a computer screen) and in a larger herding-group (khot ail) with pictures presented on a larger scree via a projector. The second method elicited more in-depth comments and inputs as to what was illustrated in the individual pictures. Two more cameras were given to herder families (one young family- in their 30s- and one old family- in their 60s). In addition interviews with a policy maker and district vice-governor, migration maps, and new statistical data were collected.

 In the Yamal case the processing and analysing of video and photo recording of interviews and the observing fieldwork in general from 2015 have been done. Ravna also did an additional fieldtrip to the boarding school in Yar-Sale, Yamal Peninsula, where she observed, interviewed and filmed the children and youth she had worked with during the summer at the tundra. In addition she interviewed teachers and other employees at the school.



Master and PhD-students involved in the project

Zoia Vylka Ravna, PhD student

For the Management

The rapid Arctic warming requires increased understanding of response capacities within communities. Our work will add to this knowledge gap by focusing on both past response strategies and present and future challenges in our communication with knowledge holders in the case areas. 

Published Results/Planned Publications

There are no publications from the project so far.

Communicated Results

During the last 12 months we have given presentations at:

-          Dep. of Archaeology and Social Anthropology, UiT-Arctic University of Norway

-          Dark Ecology and Arctic Encounters forum,

-          Romssa Sámi Searvi / Tromsø sameforening, Tromsø Museum

-          The Fram Centre, Women's network

-          Municipal Funded Educational Institution "Yamal boarding school", Russia.

-          Royal Anthropological Institute Conference -"Anthropology, Weather and Climate   Change".

-          University of Oslo – Workshop on “Climate Change and Capitalism: Inequality and Justice in an Overheated World”.

Interdisciplinary Cooperation

The disciplines involved are: Visual Anthropology (Zoia Vylka Ravna), Social Anthropology (Andrei Marin) and Archeology (Stine Barlindhaug). This consortium is beneficial in terms of working with similar research questions within mobile and semi mobile communities in the Arctic based on comparable but still different methodological traditions. 

Budget in accordance to results

LUMANOR is associated to HUMANOR which is funded through JPI Climate (NRC). The additional funding from the Fram Centre has made a more in depth fieldwork and base data gathering possible and has thus acted as an advantageous boost.  

Could results from the project be subject for any commercial utilization

It is too early in the project to list these things, but the research is expected to provide key insights into how humans have been active agents of change and/or passive receptors of change.