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Moving or staying for the best part of life: Theory and evidence for the role of subsistence in migration and well-being of Arctic Inupiat residents

TitleMoving or staying for the best part of life: Theory and evidence for the role of subsistence in migration and well-being of Arctic Inupiat residents
Year of Publication2009
AuthorsBerman, M.
JournalPolar Geography
Volume32
Pages3 - 16
Abstract

Although subsistence harvesting plays an important role in cultural identity and struggles for political autonomy among indigenous peoples of the Arctic, its role in local economies remains unclear. One view sees subsistence as the employer of last resort for people unable to find paying jobs, while another sees it as a productive activity contributing to the quality of life in rural Arctic communities. Migration provides a mechanism for determining which of these views has more empirical support, based on the theory that people consider moving to improve expected well-being. Data from the Survey of Living Conditions in the Arctic can be used to assess the extent that subsistence opportunities and wage-earning opportunities comparatively affect willingness to move from the community. The results provide insight into the value Arctic Inupiat residents place on subsistence opportunities, and the potential sensitivity of migration to changes in subsistence resource availability.

URLhttp://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/10889370903000356
Document URLhttp://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/10889370903000356