2024 GLISA Small Grant: Equitable Access to Technologies for Underrepresented and Small-Scale Farmers to Build Resilience to Climate Change

Project Team

Project Summary

Many indigenous communities grapple with changing climate patterns that impact their way of life. In the Great Lakes region, changing temperatures affect blueberry production and create hurdles for small-scale growers. This project aims to address the unequal effects of climate change on Odawa Indian farmers and blueberry growers in the Great Lakes region. To do this, the project team will host workshops with Native blueberry growers and community leaders to understand their unique adaptation challenges. They will also survey growers to learn more about climate impacts and technology needs. The team will then identify technology gaps and work with partners to explore culturally-relevant adaptation solutions.

Anticipated Outcomes
  • A workshop to set the scope of the work and identify adaptation challenges and needs 
  • Digital and in-person surveys to further understand climate impacts and experiences with digital technologies that are currently being used by farmers
  • A workshop to explore potential culturally-relevant adaptation solutions and technologies/tools
  • A summary report of project findings that will inform a future platform that integrates multiple digital information sources for farmers
Anticipated Impacts
  • Odawa Indians will explore adaptation solutions that match their cultural and environmental values. 
  • New case studies of climate solutions and applications will help Indigenous communities across the Great Lakes region adapt to climate change. 
  • Regional resilience planning will avoid unintentional harm to the culture and environment of the Great Lake region.
  • This work will explore opportunities to create risk-informed climate planning templates for small-scale farmers in the Great Lakes region. 
  • Outputs from this work will inform future solutions to better share digital information with Native farmers.
GLISA Contribution

GLISA funded this 2024 small grant project and will provide historical and future climate data for Emmet County, Michigan. GLISA will also be a resource during workshops and engagements throughout the project.

GLISA Contact

Omar Gates, Climatologist, gateso@umich.edu