A PhD student at the University of Saskatchewan is close to finishing research on the woodland caribou in northern Saskatchewan.

Max Pospisil has been conducting the research for the past two years, spending last summer in La Ronge and area interviewing local community members on their knowledge of caribou.

Her research centers on caribou and human relations and she is approaching the study from a social science perspective.

“Within that, I’m especially interested in understanding ethics, values and community teachings that Cree, Métis and non-Indigenous people around La Ronge would like to see go forward in woodland caribou stewardship and management,” Pospisil said.

As part of studying these relationships, Pospisil has examined how the two beings interact in different ways.

“So, all kinds of human engagements like right now, there’s policy being created by the ministry of environment of Saskatchewan around caribou management so I’m hoping to influence that,” she said.

In addition to influencing policy, Pospisil said she’s hoping her research puts Indigenous voices into the conversations that affect caribou management in this part of the province.

“I really hope that my research acts as a platform that to highlight community perspectives on woodland caribou and increase pride in Indigenous traditional ways of knowing about the natural world.”

Pospisil said she was able to interview community members with knowledge of caribou in La Ronge, Air Ronge, Stanley Mission, Grandmother’s Bay and Hall Lake.

As part of the project, she has partnered with the Lac La Ronge Indian Band, Prince Albert Grand Council and a number of other Indigenous organizations.

(PHOTO: Max Pospisil. Submitted photo.)