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Accepted Paper:

Yamal Nenets in Social Media: Russia’s geopolitical pursuit in the Arctic  


Elena Nogaeva (University Of Eastern Finland)

Paper short abstract:

Social media platforms allow for wide dissemination of discourse on a variety of topics. I will discuss how indigenous rights in Russia’s Arctic are represented in the social media and what challenges I have encountered while collecting and analysing such outputs.

Paper long abstract:

This study will demonstrate how Russia’s geopolitical pursuit in the Arctic relates to the indigenous visualization of the North. It will explore whether the two potentially different views on these geopolitical pursuits can lead to conflict with the state or if it will trigger an internal conflict within the group that has a potential to affect the social and cultural stability of that group. I intend to demonstrate how social media tools can assist indigenous groups in cross-border cooperation and raise awareness abroad and domestically towards their issues in the Russian North. I will discuss preliminary findings primarily from Twitter and potential ethical challenges of collecting data from VKontakte. The two social media domains are dissimilar and are intended for different types of interactions, yet have the ability to disseminate either political or group-related discourse. I will present an analytical tool for qualitative analysis that I have used in my study. The following will be raised for discussion: what are the ethical challenges that can be present when analysing social media platforms that allow for discussion to occur? Also, what are the tools that are available to appropriately analyse and retain social media discourse output? Social media is a powerful tool when it comes to raising awareness as well as disseminating politically motivated discourse on addressing domestic conflicts.

Panel P058
Digital research infrastructures in social and cultural anthropology: approaches and challenges for conducting, archiving and sharing research