Publications

2013
2013. All-Stars Profile: Archie Hendricks, Sr. Skilled Nursing Home and Tohono O'odham Hospice | Tohono O'odham Nation. See Full Report (PDF)Abstract

For many years, due to the Tohono O’odham Nation’s location in the Sonoran Desert of Arizona and the sparse population, Nation members did not have access to reservation-based long-term or post-hospital care services. This was particularly true for O’odham elders. Elders admitted to the Sells Area Indian Health Service Hospital for acute care who subsequently required follow up long-term skilled nursing care or a place for post-hospital recovery were discharged to nursing home facilities in the Tucson, Arizona area.

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2013. All-Stars Profile: Citizen Potawatomi Nation Constitutional Reform | Citizen Potawatomi Nation. See Full Report (PDF)Abstract

Forced relocations, loss of lands, and the economic necessity of moving away from home and community are common histories in Indian Country. Yet, despite these tragic circumstances, tribes continue to assert their sovereignty in order to improve the lives of their people. One of these remarkable stories comes from the Citizen Potawatomi Nation (CPN). In 2007, tired of bandaging a failing constitution that did not meet the cultural needs of the Nation, CPN citizens ratified a new governing document that resulted in a significant transfer of power and realigned the constitution to Citizen Potawatomi culture. The Nation moved from a five-member business committee with representatives only from Oklahoma to a sixteen-member legislative body with regional representatives for all CPN citizens, wherever they reside. In addition, it established checks and balances and further clarified roles and responsibilities within the governing system. Perhaps most important of all, it strengthened the Nation’s self governance by removing the clause that required the US Secretary of the Interior to approve future changes to CPN’s constitution.

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2013. All-Stars Profile: Red Lake Walleye Recovery Program | Red Lake Band of Chippewa Indians. View Report (PDF)Abstract

The Red Lake Band of Chippewa Indians have long depended on the fish that live in Red Lake, the sixth largest body of freshwater in the United States. Both the waters and walleye of the lake are central to the Red Lake Band people, its history, economy, and culture. But by the mid-1990s, the walleye population had collapsed from over-fishing. Taking drastic but necessary action, the Band negotiated a consensus arrangement with local fishermen and state and federal officials to ban fishing in the lake. Over a ten-year period the fish recovered at an astonishing rate. The tribally led Red Lake Recovery Project now determines when, how, and who can fish the historic waters from which the Band claims its name.

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2010
Stephen Cornell and Joseph P. Kalt. 11/2010. “American Indian Self-Determination: The Political Economy of a Policy that Works.” HKS Faculty Research Working Paper Series. View Report (PDF)Abstract

Since the 1970s, federal American Indian policy in the United States has been aimed at promoting self-determination through self-governance by federally-recognized tribes. This policy has proven to be the only policy that has worked to make significant progress in reversing otherwise distressed social, cultural and economic conditions in Native communities. The policy of self-determination reflects a political equilibrium which has held for four decades and which has withstood various shifts in the party control of Congress and the White House. While Republicans have provided relatively weak support for social spending on Indian issues when compared to Democrats, both parties’ representatives have generally been supportive of self-determination and local self-rule for tribes. Analysis of thousands of sponsorships of federal legislation over 1970-present, however, finds the equilibrium under challenge. In particular, since the late 1990s, Republican congressional support for policies of self-determination has fallen off sharply and has not returned. The recent change in the party control of Congress calls into question the sustainability of self-determination through self-governance as a central principle of federal Indian policy.

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Stephen Cornell and Joseph Kalt. 2010. American Indian self-determination: The political economy of a successful policy. See Full Report (PDF)Abstract

Since the 1970s, federal American Indian policy in the United States has been aimed at promoting self-determination through self-governance by federallyrecognized tribes. This policy has proven to be the only policy that has worked to make significant progress in reversing otherwise distressed social, cultural and economic conditions in Native communities. The policy of selfdetermination reflects a political equilibrium which has held for four decades and which has withstood various shifts in the party control of Congress and the White House. While Republicans have provided relatively weak support for social spending on Indian issues when compared to Democrats, both parties’ representatives have generally been supportive of self-determination and local self-rule for tribes. Analysis of thousands of sponsorships of federal legislation over 1970-present, however, finds the equilibrium under challenge. In particular, since the late 1990s, Republican congressional support for policies of self-determination has fallen off sharply and has not returned. This calls into question the sustainability of self-determination through selfgovernance as a central principle of federal Indian policy.

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2010. Air Quality Program | Gila River Indian Community. View Report (PDF)Abstract

Irrigated rows of young green crops with high levels of water.As the city of Phoenix expands toward the northern border of the Gila River Indian Community’s 374,000-acre reservation, the tribe’s economy is becoming increasingly threatened by the city’s consumption of air resources. Beginning in 1997, the Gila River Department of Environmental Quality began to create air quality standards and a monitoring and enforcement regime that ultimately won the Community exclusion from Maricopa County’s ozone non-attainment area. The Community is the first tribe in the country to have a Tribal Air Quality Management Plan approved for federal enforcement and treatment-as-a-state status from the EPA under the Clean Air Act.

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2010. California Fee-to-Trust Consortium | Elk Valley Rancheria. View Report (PDF)Abstract

Official seal of the Elk Valley Rancheria, California.In 1958 the California Rancheria Act terminated many California tribes and substantially diminished tribally held trust lands. Re-recognition processes in the 1980s restored many tribes’ political status but little of their land: 8.5 million acres of former Indian land remain alienated. California-based tribes decided to launch a proactive effort to overcome a 20-year fee-to-trust deadlock, and the California Fee-to-Trust Consortium was born. Since its inception, the Consortium has helped to move 15,274 acres into trust status. The average processing time has decreased from ten years to one. The return of lands has brought families back together; provided a foundation upon which to build the structures of governance, commerce, and cultural importance; and given citizens a place to put down roots and grow.

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2010. Citizen Potawatomi Nation Constitution Reform | Citizen Potawatomi Nation. View Report (PDF)Abstract

Citizen Potawatomi Nation Legislative Districts map.In 2007, the Citizen Potawatomi Nation adopted a new constitution which adopted a three-branch system of government, eliminated Secretarial Elections, and created the Citizen Potawatomi legislature. This 16-member legislative body is deliberately balanced, with eight Oklahoma members elected at large by Oklahoma residents and one member each from the eight legislative districts that comprise the rest of the United States, each representing a roughly equal number of Citizen Potawatomi citizens. The legislature meets virtually and all meetings are streamed and archived on the internet.

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2010. Coast Salish Gathering | Coast Salish Peoples, Swinomish Indian Tribe. View Report (PDF)Abstract

Sunny day on a Pacific coastal Washington beach where a gathering of tribal canoes and people are celebrating.The Coast Salish Gathering provides an environmental policy platform for the tribal and First Nations governments, state and provincial governments, and the US and Canadian federal governments—all of which have interests in the Salish Sea region—to discuss and determine effective environmental strategies and practices. Most important for the Coast Salish people, however, it amplifies their voice on the environmental issues that matter most to them: access to toxin-free traditional foods, adequate water quality and quantity, and collective climate change policies.

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2010. CTUIR Public Transit | Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation. View Report (PDF)Abstract

Small twenty-something seat bus with front sign that says "Walla Walla Whistler".The Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation have become one of the largest employers in Eastern Oregon, and along with economic success came the return of tribal citizens. Nonetheless, a lack of transportation options prevented tribal citizens from taking advantage of local employment opportunities. In 2001, Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation Public Transit was started to address the need for public transportation. The comprehensive Confederated Tribes Public Transit program includes both a free bus and a taxi voucher service, encompassing a large service area within and beyond the reservation boundaries, which is interconnected with other non-tribal regional systems. Remarkably, the transit system has helped alleviate poverty, promoted stronger inter-governmental relations, and facilitated community engagement.

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2010. Joint Tribal -State Jurisdiction | Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe. View Report (PDF)Abstract

Three judges standing alongside a Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe flag in a courtroom.In 2006, Leech Lake set aside generations of racial tension that existed between the tribe and its non-Native neighbors in order to focus on community healing. As a result, a DWI Wellness Court was formed by the Leech Lake Tribal Court and Minnesota’s Ninth Judicial District’s Cass County District Court to adjudicate and rehabilitate substance abusers. One year later, Leech Lake established a second Wellness Court in collaboration Itasca County District Court. The Wellness Courts operate under a joint powers agreement and serve both Native and non-Native people. They function as multi-agency advocacy and enforcement. Since its inception, the Joint Tribal-State Jurisdiction has grown in capacity, outreach, impact, and success and stands as an outstanding example of expanded self-governance.

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Explore Interactive Exhibit

2010. Leadership Institute at the Santa Fe Indian School | All Indian Pueblo Council. Publisher's VersionAbstract

Two easels that have words written on them relating to core valuesFounded in 1997, the Leadership Institute at the Santa Fe Indian School aims to create a dynamic learning environment in which community members not only learn and teach, but are able to actively contribute to the success of their nations. Four themes guide the Institute’s work: leadership, community service, public policy, and critical thinking. These themes are realized through the Institute’s four programs: Community Institutes, a Summer Policy Academy, High School Symposia, and Enrichment Opportunities. 

 

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2010. Newtok Relocation Effort | Native Village of Newtok. View Report (PDF)Abstract

Remote coastal Alaskan Native Village of Newtok and a teen driving a four-wheeler along wooden path.Newtok is a traditional Yup'ik village located on the Ninglick River in far-western Alaska. Newtok is now in the process of relocating nine miles south to Nelson Island, the site of the community’s traditional summer camp. Newtok itself has taken the lead in working with dozens of state and federal agencies to piece together its relocation efforts. In 2006, the Newtok Planning Group formed as a centralized, community-specific strategy to relocate the village. The Newtok Planning Group is a one-of-a-kind partnership between Newtok, state and federal government agencies, and non-governmental organizations. As a result, these groups now gather together in the same room to strategize Newtok’s relocation.

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2010. Oneida Advocacy through Investment Holdings | Oneida Nation of Wisconsin. View Report (PDF)Abstract

Today, the leaders of the Oneida Nation Trust Advocacy Department are leaders in the Socially Responsible Investing (or SRI) movement. Oneida is now positioned as an activist and is having a positive impact of environmental concerns, human rights, corporate culture, Indigenous issues, and the entire SRI community—all the while earning a market return on its portfolio. To expand their impact, SRI leaders at Oneida have provided education and training to committed Oneida citizens who are, with newly raised awareness, more actively managing their own investments. To expand the impact of SRI across Indian Country, the Oneida developed a guidebook focused on ways other tribes can integrate socially responsible investing in their portfolios.

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2010. Project Pueblo | Ysleta del Sur Pueblo. View Report (PDF)Abstract

Project Pueblo is a top-to-bottom engagement in the nation-building process. From 2006-2010, the Tribe has developed and undertaken a Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy, a new set of economic and business policies, new business and commercial laws and regulations, and a radically new mindset geared toward long-term planning, strategic thinking, and wide-ranging evaluation. In sum, Project Pueblo has reinvigorated the methods by which governance and business is conducted at Ysleta del Sur.

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2009
2009. Constitutions and Fundamental Government Reform: Lessons in Excellence in the Governance of American Indian Nations. See Full Report (PDF)Abstract

A collection of Honoring Nations reports focused on governmental foundations: Osage Nation Governmental Reform Initiative Northwest Intertribal Court System Elders Cultural Advisory Council Choctaw Tribal Court System Akimel O'odham/Pee-Posh Youth Council Old Law & New Law Together.

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2008
2008. We Are the Stewards: Indigenous-Led Fisheries Innovation in North America. See Full Report (PDF)Abstract
2008. Archie Hendricks, Sr. Skilled Nursing Facility and Tohono O’odham Hospice | Tohono O'odham Nation. View Report (PDF)Abstract

For decades Tohono O’odham elders in need of skilled nursing had to move far away from family and friends to receive care, or stay home and forgo long term care services. However, with the opening of the Archie Hendricks, Sr. Skilled Nursing Facility, O’odham elders can now remain in the community. Combining today’s latest technologies and world-class clinical care with traditional values, the nursing home has become one of the finest elder care facilities anywhere in the United States.

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2008. The Chickasaw Press | Chickasaw Nation. View Report (PDF)Abstract

Books about Native nations and their people are usually written by outsiders. By contrast, the Chickasaw Nation created the Chickasaw Press to spread home-grown knowledge about their Nation’s history and culture. The Press publishes books written by Chickasaw citizens, using the highest standards of professional editing and production. In doing so, it gives new life to an ancient storytelling tradition.

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2008. Community Council Task Force | Ak-Chin Indian Community. View Report (PDF)Abstract

Over the past few years, the citizens of the Ak-Chin Indian Community, located south of Phoenix, Arizona, have witnessed the land surrounding their reservation rapidly transform from fields into housing subdivisions. Worried about the impact on the reservation, the Ak-Chin Indian Community established its Community Council Task Force. The Task Force reviews all development plans for the lands surrounding the reservation to determine their resulting influence on the Community’s quality of life, and works with developers and neighboring governments to lessen any potential harm.

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