University of Cambridge > Talks.cam > Department of Geography - main Departmental seminar series > Strategies of Similarity and the Movement of Governance Knowledge: Region-Building, Indigenous Identity and International Development in the Circumpolar North

Strategies of Similarity and the Movement of Governance Knowledge: Region-Building, Indigenous Identity and International Development in the Circumpolar North

Add to your list(s) Download to your calendar using vCal

If you have a question about this talk, please contact steve.trudgill.

A common myth about globalization is that ideas and knowledge, like money, can now circulate freely. This is not always the case. Knowledge and ideas are embedded in particular places and societies and do not lend themselves straightforwardly to export. In this presentation, I examine how governance knowledge was moved across cultural and political boundaries during a development project designed to promote Canadian-style natural resource management and economic development models in the Russian North. This project, one of many cooperative endeavors involving Arctic indigenous peoples and governments, was based in the belief that relevant knowledge should be shared across the state boundaries that transect the Circumpolar North. In order to legitimate the transfer of knowledge from the Canadian North to the Russian one and to overcome historical, cultural, and political differences between Canada and Russia, the Canadian development team relied upon ‘strategies of similarity,’ namely assumptions about 1) a common Arctic space and 2) a shared Arctic indigenous identity. Drawing upon over thirty qualitative interviews and my participation in the project itself, I demonstrate how and why rhetoric about Arctic region building and discourses of indigenous unity, which often resonate well in the realm of international politics, did not serve as unproblematic mechanisms for knowledge transfer on a level closer to home. The limited reach and efficacy of these strategies of sameness indicate that the movement of knowledge cannot rely upon the real or imagined imposition of commensurability between peoples and places.

This talk is part of the Department of Geography - main Departmental seminar series series.

Tell a friend about this talk:

This talk is included in these lists:

Note that ex-directory lists are not shown.

 

© 2006-2019 Talks.cam, University of Cambridge. Contact Us | Help and Documentation | Privacy and Publicity