Ihumamnik (I acted on my own will, independently) : Social housing as a tool for Inuit empowerment is a Master Thesis Project by Arianne Côté supervised by Érick Rivard (Université Laval).
This design-research project addresses social housing in Nunavik and Inuit autonomy. The lack of local decision-making is creating a gap between the houses and the culture, values and aspirations of the communities. By giving the Inuit the choice of location, form and management of their 'homes', it is assumed that they will have a better chance of developing an architecture adapted to the particularities of the context.
The main objectives were: use ancestral knowledge and values, enhance Inuit solidarity network and reflect Arctic's changing seasonality.
Inspired by Inuit vernacular architecture, spatial organization principles and layout from self-built igloos, camps and villages (such as King Island, Alaska) were transposed into the design. Focusing on Inuit participation as a main orientation, a flexible design system was imagine to accommodate various family structures.
In order to offer as much choice as possible to the occupants, the dwelling's organization follows a structural framework which allows you to build the surface that you need. The following scenario accommodates a family of 22 people divided into 7 dwellings.