Lead Institution: University of Hamburg

Work Package Leader: Prof. Otto Habeck


One of CHARTER’s central aims is to “understand, predict and simulate the effects of … changes on indigenous and local communities and traditional livelihoods, especially herding and hunting”. WP 3 objectives are to:

  • Clarify how environmental changes interact with past and current socio-economic developmental trends in different parts of the Arctic and identify future scenarios in close interaction with indigenous and local communities.
  • To apply this knowledge to contrasting reindeer-based SESs from northern Fennoscandia and across northwest Russia.
  • Address the above objectives across a time period extending from approximately 300 years back in time up to the year 2050 (in line with the modelling of Work Package 5)

Reindeer migrating between the Komi Republic and Nenets Autonomous Okrug in Northwest Russia. Photos: Otto Habeck.

Description of work

The initial hypothesis of WP3 is that it is the cumulative effect of natural and socio-economic changes that drives biodiversity change. We shall identify and analyse specific drivers of biodiversity change for their bidirectional effects: the effect of human agency on Arctic biodiversity and the global climate, on the one hand; and the effect of rapidly changing biodiversity and climate on human livelihoods in the Arctic, on the other.

Data from other Work Packages will be included to analyse temperature changes, icing, snow amount and density, shifts in seasonality (and calving periods), ‘Rain On Snow’ events, permafrost changes, fires, landslides, sandification, draining, lake-size changes as well as socio-economic changes such as human hunting and herding decisions, fencing of territories, local economies (including tourism), industrial development; and more generally, state policies, resource management, changing values and attitudes, and technological innovation. Based on the backdrop of these variables and inputs from other WPs, during fieldwork; our collaborators and communities may suggest other relevant drivers of biodiversity change, which we shall include into our analysis. We shall assess in different Arctic regions how Arctic ecosystems act upon and react to the effects of such natural and human-induced changes, assess their vulnerability, analyse the principles of the resilience of their SES, and thus contribute to identify their adaptive capacity as part of our ongoing input to WP6.

Tasks in this Work Package include but are not limited to the collection and analysis of statistics on animal husbandry (mostly reindeer), organisational structures and herd dynamics; a synopsis of the history of animal husbandry for the target region over the last 300 years; mapping pastoral land use ca. 1960-2020; in depth interviews and multiple workshops with reindeer herders in seven selected reindeer herding communities to hear concerns on environmental changes, resource use, herding strategies, pasture usage; analyse general socio-economic processes in selected communities over the last 30 to 50 years in selected communities.

Work package leader Prof. Otto Habeck
Post Doc. Roza Laptander
Research Professor, Florian Stammler

CHARTER Researchers and Associates, WP 3

Professor Otto HabeckUniversity of Hamburg | Researchgate
Research Professor Florian StammlerUniversity of Lapland | Researchgate
Roza Laptander, PhDUniversity of Lapland | Researchgate| Twitter
Teresa KomuArctic Centre, Uni of Lapland, Finland
Bruce ForbesArctic Centre, Uni of Lapland, Finland
Stephan DudeckArctic Centre, Uni of Lapland, Finland
Sirpa RasmusArctic Centre, Uni of Lapland, Finland
Johan OlofssonUni of Umea, Sweden
Andrei MarinNorwegian University of Life Sciences
Nora FagerholmUni of Turku, Finland
Yulian Konstantinov