Directory Profiles

Dr. Deborah Simmons


Deborah Simmons has served as Executive Director of the Ɂehdzo Got’ı̨nę Gots’ę́ Nákedı (Sahtú Renewable Resources Board – SRRB) since 2012. She is trained as a social scientist specialising in social and environmental issues relating to indigenous peoples. She was raised in the Northwest Territories and completed her doctorate in the field of Native Studies at York University. Deborah has been involved in interdisciplinary research combining traditional knowledge and science in the Sahtú Region since 1999, including work for the Sahtú Land Use Planning Board, the Délı̨nę Uranium Team (Dene Náowéré Chets’elǝ), and the Ɂehdzo Got’ı̨nę Gots’ę́ Nákedı (Caribou Traditional Knowledge Study). During 2006-2010 she was Principal Investigator with the Délı̨nę Knowledge Project. Through her work with the SRRB, she continues to be active in community-collaborative research in the Sahtú Region, and helped to found the Sahtú Environmental Research and Monitoring Forum. She maintains research affiliations with Native Studies at the University of Manitoba, and Aboriginal Studies at the University of Toronto, and welcomes opportunities to mentor graduate students interested in pursuing Sahtú-based research.

Featured Research Summaries

“Learning Together” Benefits Caribou Conservation in the Northwest Territories

Selected Publications

Łeghágots’enetę (learning together): the importance of indigenous perspectives in the identification of biological variation
Polfus JL, M Manseau, D Simmons, et al.
Ecology and Society 21:18 (2016)

Working with Northern Communities to Build Collaborative Research Partnerships: Perspectives from Early Career Researchers
Tondu JME, AM Balasubramaniam, L Chavarie, et al.
Arctic 67:419–429 (Sep 2014)

Aboriginal talking circle: Aboriginal perspectives on caribou conservation – Overview by the Aboriginal Talking Circle Coordinating Team
Simmons D, W Bayha, D Beaulieu, D Gladu & M Manseau
Rangifer 20:17–19 (2012)

Honour Songs and Indigenous Resistance
Simmons D
Socialist Studies / Études Socialistes 6:173–178. (Fall 2010)

“Our Responsibility to Keep the Land Alive”: Voices of Northern Indigenous Researchers
McGregor D, W Bayha & D Simmons
Pimatisiwin: A Journal of Aboriginal and Indigenous Community Health 8:101–123 (Summer 2010)

Partnerships for Social Change in the Canadian North: Revisiting the Insider–Outsider Dialectic
Caine K, M Salomons & D Simmons
Development and Change 38:447–471 (May 2007)

In Tribute to Howard Adams
Simmons D
Studies in Political Economy 68:5–12 (Summer 2002)

After Chiapas: Aboriginal Land and Resistance in the New North America
Simmons D
Canadian Journal of Native Studies 19:119–148 (1999)