Analysis of the economic adaptation of Sami reindeer management - A co-operation project between Nordic Sami Institute (NSI) and Umeå University (UU), Centre for Sami Research (CESAM) (In Norwegian with Summary in English)

Jan Åge Riseth, Niklas Labba, Johan Klemet H. Kalstad

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economy; reindeer husbandry; economical adaptation


In spite of low economic return in Sami reindeer management in most regions, there has been an increasing human population in the reindeer industry during the latest decades. This deviates from the expectations given by modern purpose rationality. There are indications that the reindeer managing Sami practices in Weberian sense a substantial rationality. Analysis at hand indicate close connections between landscape, management type, and type of rationality in reindeer management. The project is based on two major hypotheses: 1) The life form hypothesis: reindeer management has an particular value for the performers being the condition for an active choice of remaining within the industry, 2) The capital hypothesis: lacking re¬cognition of the resources of the reindeer managing Sami is/ has been limiting their establishment in capital requiring undertakings. The project will analyse the economy of reindeer management based on investigations in several types of reindeer management as well in Norway as in Sweden, in North Sami and South Sami areas. In chosen regions both quantitative and qualitative studies will be undertaken, focusing household level, to map the economy of the reindeer managing Sami. For the quantitative analyses creation and extent of value streams in the households of reindeer management and near surroundings are focused. In the qualitative analyses the point of departure is decision situations and strategic choices with reindeer managing Sami. Based on the regional analyses comparative analyses are conducted to find representativity of the regional studies. The project was started 1st July 2004 and is financed for 2!/!> years from The Research Council of Norway (Program for Sami Research), Interreg (Interreg IIIA Såpmi & Åarjelsaemie dajve), The Sami Parliament of Sweden and self-financing from NSI and UU. The project has near after start 2 full time researchers and project leader in a 20% position. Another researcher will join the project in summer 2005. It will be considered to apply for additional financing to extend the project up to a total of four years.


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