Inuit QaujimAjatuqangit and Maps

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Much important Inuit Qaujimjatuqangit was documented through interviews with elders and hunters who used 1:250,000 scale maps, mylar overlays and felt pens to mark out caribou migrations, calving grounds, hunting areas and other important features of the land.  This information was digitized and entered into a database.  With help from the Kitikmeot Inuit Association, Kitikmeot Geosciences Ltd. and BHP Minerals Inc. and in conjunction with Environmental Systems Research Institute Inc. (ESRI), the maps and stories from the interviews were integrated through a Geographic Information System (GIS) linked to a textual database.  In this way, users can search through the interview transcripts and then connect these with maps that mark special sites such as hunting grounds, migration routes, or traditional hunting camps. With this system, new information can be easily added just like layers on a cake .

Other Aboriginal communities in the Northwest Territories and Nunavut are also using this unique and user-friendly technology.  In this way, different groups can communicate by using the 'same language'.  For Inuit in the Kitikmeot region, this means that results from the Tuktu and Nogak Project can be linked with another Inuit Qaujimajatuqangit effort called the Naonayaotit Traditional Knowledge Study like a jigsaw puzzle.

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If you are interested in learning more about this technology, please contact Rose Spicker at Kitikmeot GeoSciences.

 Picture 1: Buster Kailik discusses the hunting grounds of his youth
Picture 2: Lena Kamoayok (L) and Mary Kaniak show Meyok Omilgoetok places on the land where the hunt, travel and camp.
Picture 3:Nellie Hikok shares stories of places where she was raised on the land, many of which were located along caribou migration routes.
Picture 4:Gerry Atatahak and Sandra Eyegeok interview May Algona to learn more about caribou calving grounds and to hear more about traditional uses of caribou by Inuit.
Picture 5: Margo Kadlun-Jones takes time for laughter while interviewing elders in Iqaluktuuttiaq.