The Artic Eider Society led by Joel Heath, a Carleton research associate, was named one of five finalists for the Google Impact Challenge, receiving a $750,000 grant for his SIKU platform.
Heath, who founded the Arctic Eider Society after conducting his PhD research in Sanikiluaq, Nunavut, has been working with Inuit and Cree communities in the eastern Hudson Bay region of Nunavut and Quebec’s Nunavik region via SIKU: the Inuit Knowledge Wiki and Social Mapping Platform.
SIKU provides a set of open-source tools that help Inuit communities map changing sea ice and build a living archive of Inuit knowledge to help inform decision making for stewardship and sustainable development.
This grant will allow Heath and society to spend less time filling out grant applications and more time developing tools to connect Sanikiluaq with its neighbouring communities of Inukjuak, Umiujaq, Kuujjuaraapik and Chisasibi in Quebec.
The Google Impact Challenge supports Canadian non-profit innovators using technology to solve the world’s biggest social challenges. SIKU had made the list of 10 Canadian finalists and was competing for a place in the top five.