IWGIA Annual Report 2021
Indigenous Peoples continued to be severely impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic in 2021. In many countries where IWGIA works, partners struggled with the health situation and government restrictions that impacted their freedom of movement and further exacerbated the encroachment on Indigenous Peoples’ rights and shrinking civic space (see also last year’s annual report). In 2021, we provided information on how Indigenous Peoples have been impacted by COVID-19, but also about their resilience and innovative ways of coping with the situation by devoting our 35th annual edition of The Indigenous World to this thematic area, presenting extensive information on the pandemic in an Indigenous Peoples’ context.
2021 was the first year in the implementation of our Institutional Strategy 2021-2025, which has the overall ambition of ensuring that Indigenous Peoples’ rights to land, territories and resources and to self-determined development are promoted, respected and protected. Together with partners, who are at the very heart of our work, we implement our Triangle of Change through 4 programmes and 3 cross-cutting areas. We have an ambition to expand our strength as a knowledge centre and provide strong, professional and trustworthy analysis of Indigenous issues. We will focus on harnessing the ingenuity and energy of Indigenous youth. We will deepen and increase our engagement with Nordic countries and continue to build cooperation with Indigenous Peoples in the Arctic region. At the organisational level, we will shape and adapt our procedures to ensure that we are an agile and flexible organisational that can adjust and respond to changing circumstances and realities.
We also used the year to further develop our Key Implementation Plan (KIP) and ensure we use our cross-cutting methodologies in all our work. For example, the Indigenous Navigator is our main tool in Data Generation and Analysis and we have ensured the application of this methodology as part of all our thematic programmes.
Furthermore, we embarked on an elaborate process to develop our gender strategy through consultations internally and with our partners in 4 continents. The Gender Strategy 2021-2025 was approved by IWGIA’s Board in October 2021. We will seek funding for the implementation of the strategy to be able to support Indigenous women through this cross-cutting methodology.
In 2021, IWGIA, together with 49 partners, achieved important results under our 4 programmes and crosscutting areas in 19 countries, which you can read about in the programmatic sections further in this report.
At the global level, meetings continued to take place virtually where IWGIA extensively engaged in online meetings and events organized by the United Nations and other international mechanisms and agencies, as well as by
our partner organisations. IWGIA engaged with a total of 24 UN and other international mechanisms.
We documented the situation of Indigenous Peoples’ rights through 58 publications, podcasts and videos/streams and in our monthly magazine Indigenous Debates, many of which are described in this report.
It is clear there are shortcomings of only being able to meet virtually and that governments in particular could be far more engaged in these forums. However, IWGIA will take the positive elements of these experiences forward in post-COVID times and use more virtual/hybrid means to ensure participation and be more flexible and connected, as well as to mitigate the climate impact of our travel.