Journal 2009
Volume 3 - 2009

Here is the whole issue The Arctic & Antarctic International Journal of Circumpolar Socio-Cultural Issues Volume 3 – 2009

Negotiating the indigenous status in the Russian Federation
Anna Stammler-Gossmann (University of Lapland, Rovaniemi, Finland)
Vibrant claims of an indigenous status in Russia have dynamically entered the political and societal agenda since the end of the Soviet Union. A culminating point of this dynamic can be seen in the changing of the list of officially recognised indigenous groups, which has increased from 26 at the end of the USSR to 46 in the Russian Federation as of 2008. A reassessment of indigenousness* in the post-Soviet setting is carried out in the context of deeply rooted, old patterns of the nationality policy, and in the context of the new dimensions of the relations between the state and indigenous people. The national discourse is also challenged by the international understanding of indigeneity, regional manifestations and the interconnectedness of both perspectives. This paper analyses the construction of indigeneity as an interactive process of negotiation between the international, national and regional understandings. The contested meaning of the indigenous status is examined through a changing legal articulation of its constituents and variations in their localisation. The interplay between indigenous identities recognised on the federal Russian level and those of more regional relevance, is especially considered in the case of the north-eastern Republic of Sakha Yakutia. I argue that despite the importance of global connections, the national classification continues to be the main power of political negotiation within, across and beyond the conceptual frame of the indigenous status. At the same time the powerful but contested frames for the indigenous status in their provisional and context related perspectives create game for potential breaks and alliances.

The Grey Area: Ethical Dilemmas in the Icelandic Business Community
Snorri Örn Árnason and Helgi Gunnlaugsson (University of Iceland, Iceland)
Illegal and unethical behavior by large corporations in Iceland has caused increasing concern and debate during the past few years. This study seeks explanations for this kind of conduct. The main object of the study was to examine which external and internal factors contribute to increased risk of corporate misconduct. The research is based on interviews with ten managers and middle managers of large corporations who were selected by snowball sampling and whose identities are hidden. The data was collected and analysed by using qualitative research methods. Because of the small sample size the results must be interpreted cautiously and the conclusions cannot be generalized. The findings indicate that following the ratification of the European Economic Union in 1994 the laws relating to business changed and thereupon the moral values with regard to commerce were rapidly revolutionized. Icelandic society subsequently passed through a period of conflicts of standards which resulted in uncertainty about implementing them. This “anomic” condition increased the risk of illegal methods being used to reach corporate goals. New opportunities and greater emphasis on financial gain put increasing pressure on managers to meet these goals. At the same time the boards of directors neglected their regulatory duties and thus possibly a counterbalance was lacking. Top management set the ethical tone and if they select illegal means to obtain their goals it may produce an unethical organizational culture which favours and rationalizes this kind of behaviour. Clear government regulation in cooperation with the business community is the key to compliance and for ethical business standards to become widely accepted.

Interculturality in Patagonian Medicine: An Interpretation from the History of the Americas
Valentina Farías, Graciela Montero, Raúl Calfín (Universidad FASTA, Bariloche, Argentina) & Javier Mignone (University of Manitoba, Canada).
Interculturality in health has become an internationally recognized issue. For example World Health Organization (WHO), Pan-American Health Organization (PAHO), and Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) have addressed interest toward it quite recently. This article considers the issue and its history in Patagonia, where the Indigenous medical knowledge is in many way intertwined with the medical knowledge of the colonialists and immigrants. However, the significance of the indigenous knowledge and skills in health and medicine is rarely recognized. This article brings into the light the long needed recognition of the centrality of addressing health and health care from an intercultural perspective and claims that indigenous health and medical knowledges and practices should be recognized in the name of the equal treatment of cultures.

From Politics to Business? Social firms as the locomotives of the third sector transition in Finland
Miikka Pyykkönen (University of Jyväskylä, Finland)
This article deals with the recent changes in understanding the role, characteristics and the practices of the third sector in Finland. It approaches the changes, first of all, from the perspective of the social policy planning in general: how are the administrative expectations toward the third sector changing in Finland and why? On the other hand the changes will be analyzed from the perspective of a particular and relatively new type of the third sector organization, the social firm. This part of the article, which bases on the empirical case-study on the specific social firm in progress, reveals in detail how the discourses, logics of action, and styles of management familiar from the private sector are increasingly penetrating the service providing third sector organizations – or the so called new third sector – in Finland. Whereas the role of the third sector associations has traditionally been to process and serve the interests of the groups they claim to represent and the management of the organizations has been taken care of according to the principles of direct and representative democracy, the role of the new third sector organizations – especially social firms – is defined externally by the expectations of the social and health care administration to a great extent and the organizations are ran according to the practices and principles of new public management and managerialism.

Gender changes in Iceland From rigid roles to negotiations
Ingólfur V. Gíslason (University of Iceland)
Radical changes have been taking place in the gender roles of men and women in Iceland for some decades. While they were first mainly restricted to women, the labour market and education, during the last two decades we have witnessed a change among men, mainly fathers. Taken together the changes are affecting families and the power balance within them. The changes are not unique for Iceland, similar changes have been taking place in other Nordic countries and in Europe in general, yet in some ways they have gone furthest in Iceland. In this article the changes in gender roles that have taken place in the last decades and particularly how they have affected men and the families will be evaluated and discussed.

Contributors’ information

Institutional information

Notes for Contributors

Call for papers