What is success? A case study in planning for climate change in Shaktoolik, Alaska

This case study was done in partnership with the Tribal Council of the Native Village of Shaktoolik to understand how various actors involved in planning for climate change perceive success.

The research project answered three questions:

  • What is the context for planning for climate change in Shaktoolik?
  • How do the actors involved in planning for climate change in Shaktoolik perceive success?
  • How can understanding various perceptions of success across different actors help improve climate adaptation planning in rural, indigenous communities in Northwest Alaska?

Through a detailed analysis of the climate adaptation planning literature seven dimensions of success were selected to guide the interview protocol and to analyze the data gathered. These dimensions were: flexibility, sustainability, equity, legitimacy, efficiency, effectiveness, and replicability.

The methods used to collect data were planning document analysis, semi-structured interviews, and participant observation. The participants involved in this research were local, state, and federal government entities as well as consultants and non-profit groups.

Deliverables of this research were a Perceptions of Success Opus with Executive Summary, and a condensed case study report to be submitted to NOAA’s Climate Resilience Toolkit website.