First Nations, Metis and Inuit – Indigenous Ontologies (FNMIIO)

Happy Indigenous Peoples Day!

To mark National Indigenous Peoples Day we are pleased to announce that the CFLA-FCAB’s Indigenous Matters Committee’s – Red Team-Joint Working Group on Classification and Subject Headings and the National Indigenous Knowledge and Language Alliance (NIKLA) is releasing the First Nations, Métis, and Inuit – Indigenous Ontology (FNMIIO). This initial release of community names is a soft launch is a first step in a longer project and represents the equal and collaborative contributions of its members.

NIKLA and the Joint Working Group acknowledge that the ontology builds on the work of many Indigenous peoples who have long advocated for the importance of respectfully representing Indigenous knowledge, culture, and communities in libraries. This living ontology respects, acknowledges, and supports Indigenous sovereignty over knowledge. The First Nations, Métis, and Inuit – Indigenous Ontology (FNMIIO) soft launch will facilitate community feedback, corrections and expressions as needed and the Joint Working Group/NIKLA will respond to these contributions by updating this living document at regular intervals.

The FNMI Ontology is released through the National Indigenous Knowledge and Language Alliance (NIKLA) and represents an initial effort to improve the representation of Indigenous peoples and communities in libraries, archives and other cultural memory institutions a group of volunteers, working with the (spell out) CFLA-FCAB Indigenous Matters Committee – Red Team Joint Working Group on Classification and Subject Headings and others that have joined this group via the National Indigenous Knowledge and Language Alliance NIKLA ANCLA, have compiled a working list of Indigenous Names to better reflect how Indigenous people currently prefer to refer to themselves. This is a living document that will be updated and change as more information is gathered or realized in the course of research and/or consultations.

The Joint Working Group on Classification and Subject Headings, led by Camille Callison, Stacy Allison-Cassin, Alissa Cherry and F. Tim Knight, is dedicated to identifying and promoting best practices, supporting reconciliation and meeting the needs of Indigenous communities and have come together to fulfill and implement recommendation #5 of the CFLA/FCAB Truth & Reconciliation Committee report:

“Decolonize Access and Classification by addressing the structural biases in existing schemes of knowledge organization and information retrieval arising from colonialism by committing to integrating Indigenous epistemologies into cataloguing praxis and knowledge management.” CFLA-FCAB Truth & Reconciliation Committee report

This first draft of the  “First Nations, Metis and Inuit – Indigenous Ontologies” (FNMIIO) located at:  is a living document and we welcome and encourage feedback on any aspect of the data found in this spreadsheet. Please contact us with any corrections or inaccuracies you find or if you have suggestions for improvement.

Future plans for this vocabulary include distribution as MARC authority records and in linked data formats (RDF/XML, JSON-LD, Turtle, etc.).

Joint Working Group on Classification and Subject Heading/NIKLA members

Stacy Allison-Cassin York University
Camille Callison University of Manitoba
Alissa Cherry Museum of Anthropology
F. Tim Knight Osgoode Hall, York University
Michael Dudley University of Winnipeg
Sharon Farnel University of Alberta
Darren Furey Memorial University
Katherine Kasirer National Film Board of Canada
Patricia Geddes Vancouver Island University
Patricia Knockwood New Brunswick Public Library
Anita Kora Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami (ITK)
Stacey Penney Memorial University
Monika Fuijkschot Library and Archives Canada -LAC
Christine Bone University of Manitoba
Anne Carr-Wiggin
University of Alberta
Lisc Daley Northwest Territories Legislative Library
Trina Grover Ryerson University
William (Bill) Leonard Library and Archives Canada LAC
Melanie Ribau Toronto Public Library
Elizabeth Stregger Mount Allison University Libraries and Archives
Dianne Beattie Library and Archives Canada LAC
Natalie Mainville Library and Archives Canada LAC
Robin Desmeules McGill University
Jennifer Budden A.C. Hunter Public Library, St. John, Newfoundland
Morning Star Padilla Dalhousie University
Carol Rigby Nunavut/Liaison with Metadata Committee
Melissa Adams Union of BC Indian Chiefs
Kim Lawson Xwi7xwa Library, UBC
Desmond Wong University of Toronto
Don Johnson Saskatchewan Archives
Garry Njootli Geographical Place Names Program, Yukon Government
Tyson Thomas Previously at University of Alberta


Wikipedia: Meetup/ NIKLA-ANCLA

Please join us on January 28th and 29th for the Wikipedia Meetup NIKLA ANCLA.

Wikipedia: Meetup/ NIKLA-ANCLA

The Wikimedia project platforms such as Wikipedia, Wikidata and Wikimedia Commons are increasingly being used to enable grassroots initiatives to support language and cultural reclamation around the world. Examples include: the Catalan community, the Welsh community, as well as projects in Finland and India. Because the projects are supported by a not-for-profit foundation and are community-driven there are opportunities for language support and development as well as technical infrastructure.

The platforms are also being used to increase the visibility of marginalized communities and languages. The platforms are also being used to document traditional practices.

Wikipedia is the fifth most visited website in the world. The platforms taken together impact the internet, playing a major role in Google search results. Projects such as Whose Knowledge are demonstrating both the need and active solutions to problems of visibility and the Internet. Increasing the visibility and accessibility of information about Indigenous peoples and culture show the world know we are here.

Event details

On Monday, January 28th a workshop will be convened to engage the professional community in discussions and practice-based initiatives to work on the ways that Wikimedia platforms will be used to support the work related to Indigenous knowledges and languages in Canada.

  • What to bring: Please bring a laptop or tablet. If you don’t have a laptop please contact one of the organizers.

Location and transportation

  • Host: Ryerson University Library, 350 Victoria Street

Ryerson Library is located at the corner of Gould and Victoria Streets and can be accessed by the TTC Dundas subway stop. Map (external link)

Workshop schedule

Monday, January 28th

      • 09:00-09:15 Welcome and introduction to the Wikimedia Projects, Stacy Allison-Cassin, Trina Grover
      • 9:15-10:30 Atikamekw knowledge, culture and language in Wikimedia projects, Benoit Rochon, Wikimedia Canada & Atikamekw knowledge project
      • 10:30-11:00 Wikimedia projects related to Indigenous peoples and culture/Open editing time, Stacy Allison-Cassin
      • 11:00-11:15 Break
      • 11:15-13:00 Workshop: Indigenous Knowledge and UNDRIP Implementation with Dr. Greg Younging and Camille Callison (RSVP form for those not attending the Wikimedia workshops)
      • 13:00-14:00 Lunch on your own
      • 14:00-14:45 Intro to Wikidata/Tutorial, Stacy Allison-Cassin
      • 14:45-16:30 Open editing time

Tuesday, January 29th

Let us know if you’re coming!

If possible, please sign up for a Wikipedia account ahead of time. See this page for information on how to create an account.

Please register for this event:


  • Stacy Allison-Cassin, York U.,, —Smallison (talk) 18:18, 19 December 2018 (UTC)
  • Trina Grover, Ryerson U.
  • Camille Callison, University of Manitoba

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