Indigenous People with Disabilities in the Arctic: Workshop for Initiating Research Collaboration

Join the workshop on Friday 31 May 2024.

Over the past years there has been an increasing focus on diversity and inclusion; in the Arctic, the focus has often been on gender, while people with disabilities are often overlooked. The studies that exist tend to be limited in geographical scope and often adopt a monodisciplinary, often medical, perspective. With a few notable exceptions, little attention has been paid to the lived experiences of people with disabilities within their social, cultural, political, geographical and historical context. To understand the experiences and challenges faced by indigenous people with disabilities in the Arctic, a comparative, interdisciplinary approach is needed.


The one-day workshop will bring together an international and interdisciplinary group of researchers and experts interested in the lived experiences and inclusion of indigenous people with disabilities in the Arctic regions of Alaska, Canada, Greenland, and Sápmi. The aim of the workshop is to (1) map existing knowledge and identify knowledge gaps and (2) develop a shared research agenda.


The workshop is organized by the Nordland Research Institute in collaboration with the Centre for Saami and Indigenous Studies at Nord University in Bodø, Norway.


The workshop is hosted by the Valnesfjord Health Sports Centre (Valnesfjord Helsesportssenter; near Bodø, Norway. The Centre’s meeting facilities and beautiful surroundings offer an ideal location for productive workshop sessions as well as for informal exchanges. In addition, participants will be offered a tour of the Centre and an introduction to its innovative approaches to outdoor rehabilitation. For video presentations of the Centre (in Norwegian), see or




Practical information about the workshop

Date: Friday 31 May

Format: One-day workshop

Location: Valnesfjord Health Sports Centre, near Bodø, Norway (website: Transportation to/from Bodø is arranged by the organizers for those who wish.

Virtual participation is possible as well.

Costs: There is no registration fee. Coffee/tea and lunch are provided.


Who can participate?

We invite researchers and practitioners with a strong interest and expertise regarding indigenous people with disabilities in the Arctic regions of Alaska, Canada, Greenland, and Sápmi. Researchers and experts from different countries and from different disciplines are welcome.



Registration is required. To register for the workshop, please complete the registration form (link:

The deadline for registration is 15 May.


Preliminary programme


Departure from Bodø


Arrival at Valnesfjord Health Sports Centre

Coffee / tea


*Welcome and introductions


*Workshop Part I “Challenges”


Lunch break


Guided introduction & tour of Valnesfjord Health Sports Centre (including outside areas, depending on the weather)


*Workshop Part II “Research needs”


Coffee break


*Workshop Part III “Next steps”


End of programme


Departure from Valnesfjord Health Sports Centre


Arrival in Bodø

Please note that this is a preliminary programme and may be subject to change.

* Virtual participation is possible.


Practical note. Depending on the weather, lunch or coffee/tea during breaks may be served outside, perhaps in one of the Centre’s huts/tents near the river. Please dress comfortably.


After the workshop

For those who are interested, the workshop will form the starting point for collaboration on a joint funding proposal for a future research project. Those who wish to participate in developing the research proposal will work together over the summer, supported by online meetings. The funding proposal will be finalized during a 2-day workshop in the autumn and submitted to a national or international funding agency.



The workshop is supported by the Research Council of Norway (grant no. 352065).