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PILIRIQATIGIINNIQ ‘Working in a collaborative way for the common good’: A perspective on the space where health research methodology and Inuit epistemology come together

Gwen Healey, Andrew Tagak

2014 Canada

Increasing attention on the Arctic has led to an increase in research in this area. Health research in Arctic Indigenous communities is also increasing as part of this movement. A growing segment of the research community is focused on explaining and understanding Indigenous knowledge and ways of knowing. Researchers have become increasingly aware that Indigenous knowledge must be perceived, collected and shared in ways that are unique to, and shaped by, the communities and individuals from which this knowledge is gathered. This paper adds to this body of literature to provide Inuit perspectives on health-related research epistemologies and methodologies, with the intent that it may inform health researchers with an interest in Arctic health. The Inuit concepts of inuuqatigiittiarniq (“being respectful of all people”), unikkaaqatigiinniq (story-telling), pittiarniq (“being kind and good”), and iqqaumaqatigiinniq (“all things coming into one”) and piliriqatigiinniq (“working together for the common good”) are woven into a responsive community health research model grounded in Inuit ways of knowing which is shared and discussed.

Inuit, epistemology, health research methods, relational knowledge, Indigenous knowledge.