Gathering and Commoning with Wild Species in Norway

Researcher(s)

Elizabeth Barron

Project Location

Norway

*I will be hiring a PhD student for this project soon. Stay tuned!*

The overall project has three components: empirical, theoretical, and applied. Empirically it will focus on documenting, mapping, and understanding different gathering communities throughout Norway, focusing on the gathering of wild species. Theoretically it will examine the role gathering plays in community well-being and social cohesion, its role as a place-making practice, and the corollary effects identifying and making visible these activities can have on long-term, place-based sustainability. Gathering, as a practice, is defined here as the removal of plants, fungi or algae from the wild. Anticipated stakeholder communities include amateurs, subsistence, immigrant and indigenous groups. Stakeholder communities engage in gathering for a range of reasons, including tradition, livelihoods, subsistence, and recreation. How to qualify and quantify these practices in relation to their sustainability is an important applied question. A correlated, even more challenging question is how to build them into current discourses of sustainability as envisaged by Norwegian environmental governance and policy.

Mountain heath species and Birch tree