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The use of the word "Stakeholder" and Indigenous Peoples
On the University of Calgary website, it is noted that "the use of Indigenous/Aboriginal “stakeholders” or similar variants is discouraged as the relevant Indigenous group are not mere “stakeholders interested in the matter,” they are rights-bearing communities with attendant constitutional rights, at the very least, to consultation."

In light of holding an upcoming multistakeholder meeting, is there another word that could be used and the broader PMI community would consider. I'm also seeking knowledge from those who have had experience and/or are an indigenous peoples member participant.
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Kim -

There was a recent thread with almost the same inquiry which you can review here: https://www.projectmanagement.com/discussi...13/stakeholders

Kiron
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1 reply by Kim Baird
Jun 23, 2022 1:22 PM
Kim Baird
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Thank you for the link. To replace multistakeholder meeting with affected party or interested parties meeting doesn't quite carry the same meaning...and therefore we will possibly move towards multi-perspective, collaborator, contributor meeting.
Jun 23, 2022 12:25 PM
Replying to Kiron Bondale
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Kim -

There was a recent thread with almost the same inquiry which you can review here: https://www.projectmanagement.com/discussi...13/stakeholders

Kiron
Thank you for the link. To replace multistakeholder meeting with affected party or interested parties meeting doesn't quite carry the same meaning...and therefore we will possibly move towards multi-perspective, collaborator, contributor meeting.
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1 reply by Rami Kaibni
Jun 23, 2022 7:59 PM
Rami Kaibni
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You probably are right - It is a tough spot but you can also use team player could work too.
Jun 23, 2022 1:22 PM
Replying to Kim Baird
...
Thank you for the link. To replace multistakeholder meeting with affected party or interested parties meeting doesn't quite carry the same meaning...and therefore we will possibly move towards multi-perspective, collaborator, contributor meeting.
You probably are right - It is a tough spot but you can also use team player could work too.
Hmmm. It is a tricky situation. I will sleep on it and keep you posted if I find anything.
It seems that the issue is a term that is perceived as marginalizing an ethnic group with a history of being marginalized. I would ensure that the term conveys a VIP status. They certainly are VIPs. Governors attend tribal leader birthdays.

Their culture is also very rich in ceremony. Titles are important just as if a major stakeholder was a military leader, government official, or member of royalty. Giving someone the wrong title can be equally offensive though and I can see many of the suggestions potentially being perceived as such.

The term tribal authority/government or something to that affect speaks to that directly. Better yet, contact the local Tribal Council and ask them. Nobody gets offended when you ask the right way to call them. It's generally a sign of respect.

If you have to change your language to "stakeholders and tribal authority" in general to explicitly include their authority, it's a bit more typing but not unlike many other situations.
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1 reply by Stéphane Parent
Jun 27, 2022 8:39 AM
Stéphane Parent
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Hmm... Why not call them VIP, instead of finding a VIP-equivalent?
Just to comment about my personal experience I was the leader when software and infraestructure that supports of casinos in Las Vegas where indigenous/aborigen communities were the owner of those casinos. In my personal experience, the role name that´s not matter. What matter is to engage them in the right way. That´s more difficult and demands to study and to know about they culture and they way of thinking and behave.
Use the Project Charter to define your terminology. Typically "Stakeholder" is used to identify all parties that have influence on, or are influenced by the project. Within that definition there is a hierarchy recognizing the involvement, responsibilities and authority and of each. With an infrastructure project government stakeholders may include municipal, provincial and federal bodies. I would see the Indigenous peoples included in that grouping.

I believe the issue may be the presentation rather than specific terminology.
Jun 24, 2022 4:12 PM
Replying to Keith Novak
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It seems that the issue is a term that is perceived as marginalizing an ethnic group with a history of being marginalized. I would ensure that the term conveys a VIP status. They certainly are VIPs. Governors attend tribal leader birthdays.

Their culture is also very rich in ceremony. Titles are important just as if a major stakeholder was a military leader, government official, or member of royalty. Giving someone the wrong title can be equally offensive though and I can see many of the suggestions potentially being perceived as such.

The term tribal authority/government or something to that affect speaks to that directly. Better yet, contact the local Tribal Council and ask them. Nobody gets offended when you ask the right way to call them. It's generally a sign of respect.

If you have to change your language to "stakeholders and tribal authority" in general to explicitly include their authority, it's a bit more typing but not unlike many other situations.
Hmm... Why not call them VIP, instead of finding a VIP-equivalent?
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1 reply by Keith Novak
Jun 27, 2022 1:04 PM
Keith Novak
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You could use that term, I suppose. I was looking for some term that conveys not only importance, but also uniqueness or a separate entity.

Government projects for example, which include both civilian and military personnel will sometimes distinctly state both organizations, as will collaborations between companies. Although the formality may feel a bit excessive, it is also an important part of many indigenous cultures. At some ceremonies I have personally attended, formal greetings will take hours if not days. The formality at large events with many groups attending is integral to the culture.

My thinking on a term like Tribal Authority is that it speaks to the people directly, as well as conveying importance.
Jun 27, 2022 8:39 AM
Replying to Stéphane Parent
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Hmm... Why not call them VIP, instead of finding a VIP-equivalent?
You could use that term, I suppose. I was looking for some term that conveys not only importance, but also uniqueness or a separate entity.

Government projects for example, which include both civilian and military personnel will sometimes distinctly state both organizations, as will collaborations between companies. Although the formality may feel a bit excessive, it is also an important part of many indigenous cultures. At some ceremonies I have personally attended, formal greetings will take hours if not days. The formality at large events with many groups attending is integral to the culture.

My thinking on a term like Tribal Authority is that it speaks to the people directly, as well as conveying importance.
It seems like the author of that sentence does not understand what "stakeholder" means in PM parlance. This is not their fault, and it may be an opportunity to educate the parties involved.

Saying that a group is a stakeholder is an acknowledgment that they have an influence on, or are influenced by, a project. Showing them an example of a stakeholder register, particularly an interest/influence matrix, might serve to illustrate that "stakeholder" is not an unimportant position.

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