Faculty Publications


Indigenous peoples of the Russian arctic (Problems and development prospects)

Document Type



Arctic zone of the Russian Federation, Indigenous small-numbered peoples of the North, Infrastructure, Legal regulation, Preservation of traditional livelihoods, Territories of traditional nature management

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Ekologiya Cheloveka (Human Ecology)





First Page


Last Page



The aim of the study - identification of factors that ensure the vital activity of indigenous small-numbered peoples of the North in the Arctic, as well as the analysis of their impact on the preservation and development of the ethnic group. Identifying problems and assessing the prospects for the development of indigenous people consists of 3 stages: analysis of foreign and domestic sources, the results of scientific research teams; systematization of statistical data, including information on the dynamics of the development of indigenous people (number, employment in traditional activities); the impact assessing of legal, economic and social factors on the preservation and development of indigenous people. A comprehensive analysis of a wide range of legal, economic and social problems of ensuring the traditional life of indigenous people within the Arctic zone of the Russian Federation (AZRF) has shown the need to improve legislative, financial and managerial actions to preserve them as a specific community, adapted to the extremely severe conditions of permanent residence beyond the Arctic Circle and as a unique phenogenotype, whose activity is closely conjugated with the environmental state of the macroregion and in fact is entirely dependent on it. The exclusive role of indigenous peoples in preserving the natural complexes of the Arctic in the 21st century for future generations was emphasized. Under the conditions of proliferation of technogenic and anthropogenic burden on the natural complexes of the macroregion, associated with the intensive development of fuel and power resources, deposits of rare and precious metals, development of coastal transport infrastructure and a multiple increase in the population in the Russian Arctic with a creation of “stronghold areas” the threat of the indigenous peoples’ disappearance appeared (Enets - about 200 people remain and less than 100 people – the Votes). Under the conditions of a large-scale, integral impact of man-made, anthropogenic and climatic factors on indigenous communities in the Arctic, their life environment and traditional management the need for urgent adoption of a complex of specific and targeted legal, economic and social measures aimed at ensuring and preserving their livelihoods is obvious.


Department of Geography

Original Publication Date



UNI ScholarWorks, Rod Library, University of Northern Iowa



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