The Knowledge Centre is an interprofessional collaboration and the board consists of psychologists: Dorthe Chemnitz, Sanne Broberg and prof. in Arctic psychology Peter Berliner, associate professor of Arctic studies Naja Trondhjem and social anthropologist Aviaja Egede Lynge. In addition, the knowledge centre has an Advisory Board attached, consisting of professionals and researchers within psychology, culture and mental health.
The Center for Arctic Psychology works to strengthen the field of psychological research and knowledge relevant to Inuit both in Greenland and across national borders in the Arctic with a focus on:
- To gather and form psychological knowledge and research that has a Greenlandic/Inuit perspective and focus.
- Research in the Inuit arctic and culturally specific compared with Western psychotherapeutic theories and methods.
- Perspectives on psychological research and possible directions for action.
- Bring together psychologists across the Arctic and create a global network with other Indigenous mental health researchers.
- In the long term, to establish a Department of Arctic Psychology at the University of Greenland.
Many Greenlanders have to further their education at universities in Denmark, and in the psychology studies the students are taught Western approaches and approaches within prevention and treatment. Everything is based on Western frameworks of understanding and methodologies. This means that the psychologists who treat Greenlanders are trained in methods that are based on a Western and Danish framework of understanding of what mental health is, and including a monocultural practice within psychology.
Since the Inuit cultural understanding is not included in the current educational process, it creates a discrepancy between the theory, method and the psychotherapeutic practice of the Greenlanders it treats.
There is therefore a need to open up new knowledge about how best to help Inuit based on their own cultural heritage, knowledge and understanding framework. And expand the perspective of the psychological therapeutic practice, to oversee the psychosocial challenges we have in Greenland and the Greenlandic communities in Denmark, based on a culture-adapted approach and research methods.
The Center for Arctic Psychology has submitted an application for a PhD project with this purpose to the Greenlandic Research Council 1. March 2022, and is also looking for other collaborators who have an interest in developing this field with us. We can be contacted on firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone + 45 60660093