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Adapting Village Shores to Prevent Erosion

This essay addresses, from an Inuit cultural perspective, the adaptation of built environments along the Northern coasts of Nunavik to the risks posed by climate changes.

In order to avoid the application of culturally inappropriate coastal adaptation approaches, it appears important to bring nuances to the thought processes concerning coastal development in the North. This study therefore aims to critically examine generic protection solutions in an attempt to initiate discussions on socially acceptable strategies for Inuit communities. This work explores Inuit ecocentrism in order to establish principles of shoreline adaptation from an Inuit perspective. A blending of concepts of environmental ethic, sense of place and Inuit planning, with an understanding of northern coastal hazards, distinguishes culturally appropriate coastal adaptation opportunities.

The exploration notes that ecological engineering theories, with the ability to blend hard engineering with soft engineering, merit further consideration in designing strategies that are physically appropriate to the northern context as well as to Inuit culture.

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