Images from the Conference

Dakhká Khwáan Dancers
at the Gala
Dr. Laurence C. Smith
gives a keynote address on "the New North: the World in 2050"
Jeff Cook
speaks to a packed house on the second keynote address
Ed Peekakoot
fiddling at the Gala
An engaging poster area
posters were also presented at lighting talks
Planning the New North
Planning the New North
Sarah Reid
on indigenous climate change adaptation planning
Cooking Up Ideas
an ice-breaking activity
Dr. Laurence C. Smith
gives a keynote address on "the New North: the World in 2050"
Iain Davidson-Hunt
makes a point
A Full House in the Longhouse
a keynote address draws a full house with about 200 attendees
Wilbur Smarch
talking about the legacy of Indian Residential Schools
Planning the New North
singing at the Gala
Planning the New North
Planning the New North
One of many breakout sessions
at the "Artist Studio"
Planning the New North
Dan Paleczny
giving his perspectives on transboundary land use planning
Michael Barrett
on the Nunavik experience with regional planning and protected areas
Chief Joachim Bonnetrouge
on the lessons learned drafting the Decho Land Use Plan
Council Chair Patrick Rouble
giving the opening message
Council Director Ron Cruikshank
presenting his experience developing the Gwich'in Regional Land Use Plan
The Next Generation of Planners
posing by a dugout canoe

February 15th-17th, 2016 at the Kwanlin Dün Cultural Centre in Whitehorse, Yukon

Regional land use planning in the north has been taking place in various forms for over 50 years.  Territorial, Federal and Aboriginal Governments use regional planning as the preferred method to inform land use decisions, create certainty, and balance the economic, social, cultural and environmental needs and priorities of northern Canada.   The north is changing - climate change, settlement of land claims, northern co-management and governance, access and global demand of the North’s natural resources and the opening of the northwest passage are all contributing to what is being defined as the ‘New North’ (Smith, 2011).  Regional plans are and will be a key resource in helping inform the future decisions of the north.

Some would argue that land use planning has had limited success in the north.  Plans are expensive, take a very long time to complete and have created conflicts and regulatory uncertainty (which is what planning is envisioned to avoid).  It is therefore important that northern land use planners and integrated resource managers from Yukon, Northwest Territories, and Nunavut come together to share their successes and challenges and examine new ways to move forward with planning in the north that addresses the challenges and opportunities.

The Conference will involve planners from across Canada’s north, integrated resource managers, northern economic and social experts and aboriginal, territorial, provincial and federal government representatives.  The vastness of the north, the differing planning processes, isolation and remoteness and the linkages of transportation and knowledge north - south have led to a fragmentation of northern planning knowledge. Regional land use and community planners and northern experts are invited from the circumpolar region including: Yukon, Northwest Territories, Nunavut, Alaska, Labrador, the northern regions of Canada’s provinces, Nunatsiaq, Nunavik and Scandinavia to create a northern planning network.

The intent is to share, learn, build capacity and establish a northern planning network. The conference planning committee with their partners (APPI, PIBC, Governments of Yukon, NWT and Nunavut  and Yukon Land Use Planning Council) will issue a call for papers in beginning of October. A poster session is also included providing another opportunity to highlight northern regional land use planning.

The Key Themes:

  • Governance – the Planning Context
  • Planning for Change and Sustainability – how do we protect valued components amongst the changes?
  • The Future of Northern Planning – new plans for the ‘New North’
  • Planning Methods in the North – planning approaches and techniques for northern plan

The objectives of the conference are to:

  • Develop and share ways forward to ensure northern planning is relevant, timely, cost effective and working;
  • Share northern planning experiences;
  • Share and learn from northern planning successes, failures, challenges and solutions;
  • Develop a northern professional planning network;
  • Identify and develop links to other planning processes and professionals;
  • Create professional planning awareness with the profession, the governments and northerners;
  • Build trust in the land use planning process; and
  • Build northern land use planning capacity.