On Monday, April 13th 2015, numerous international researchers as well as local stakeholders met in Auditorium in Arctic Centre for the project's kick-off meeting. The meeting was held in the form of a workshop, where researchers from Canada, Australia, and several European countries came together with representatives from the local tourism network and mining sector, to discuss on the substance of the project as well as on its implementation.
The morning session of the workshop started with welcoming words by research professor and director of the Northern Institute for Environmental and Minority Law, Timo Koivurova. After the principal investigator Kamrul Hossain introduced the project, the workshop participants elaborated in group work on the substance of the project. The afternoon session was dedicated to address practicalities of the project and how to implement it. The main points that have been discussed where the dissemination of the project results such as through online presence, newsletters, scientific articles and an edited book volume; Project activities, such as field investigations, possible excursions, future seminars and workshops; Involvement of stakeholders; And ethical issues as well as handling and storing data.
The next steps that have been agreed to are building a preliminary theoretical framework within 6 months, on which project partners and contributors can base their further research on; To define key focus areas and establish smaller working groups, also in regard to the project's work packages; To create a stakeholder engagement plan as well as a dissemination plan.
At the kick-off meeting it has also been agreed that the mid-term workshop and seminar will be hold in approximately twelve to sixteen months.