Empowerment and continuity in Sámi reindeer herding in Finnish Upper Lapland

Activity: PresentationConference presentation


In the Finnish North, transhumance has never lost its relevance, although it has undergone significant changes. Transhumance has been and continues to be at the heart of Sámi reindeer herding. Today, the reindeer roam freely between the four seasonal pastures, spring calving ground, summer ear marking, autumn mating grounds and separation/slaughtering in winter. Compared to the times when the herder would stay with the herd, this is now reduced to contact twice a year, and increasingly supported by technology, i.e. snowmobile, helicopter and GPS collar. Apart from being a viable livelihood that produces meat and fur products, and is an important tourism business, reindeer herding has become crucial for Sámi identity formation and political claim-making. In this sense, the Finnish (and Swedish resp. Norwegian) case gives a positive example of how transhumant livelihood can be revived and promoted
Period17 Apr 2019
Event titleSIEF 14th Congress: Track Changes: Reflecting on a Transforming World
Event typeConference
LocationSantiago di Compostela, SpainShow on map


  • Transhumance
  • Sámi
  • Reindeer herding
  • Tourism