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Accepted paper:

Implications of Indigenous Knowledge-based water management


Ranjan Datta (University of Regina)

Paper short abstract:

An increasing number educators, social and environmental activists, researchers and resource managers are eager to find ways to support, effectively, ethically, and appropriately, inclusion of Indigenous knowledge (IK) into resource management initiatives.

Paper long abstract:

Yet IK is not simply local ecological knowledge with a cultural twist. IK comes from both physical and spiritual realms and involves intimate, water relations with the natural world-drawing on a set of perspectives and paradigms which may provide significant benefits to non-Indigenous resource managers trained in western scientific methods. Following Indigenous community-based research methods this study addressed: What were traditional water customs and practices in Saskatchewan River Delta, particularly in relation to environmental resource management practices and policies? How divergent perspectives can be taught in mutually respectful ways, across cultural divides? What are participants' perspectives on the importance of traditional water customs and practices teaching of water-management policy implications for creative new approaches to: (a) land-based education; (b) water security and environmental sustainability; (c) community-based research methodologies; (d) community resilience; (f) grounded in the principles of reconciliation? This study took a critical step to reorganize and include Indigenous knowledge and practice in informing policy options to address water uncertainty and impediments to effective water governance for developing sustainable environmental management strategies, while potentially offering a significant bridge between western and Indigenous ways of environmental resource management and sustainability.

panel AN03
Ecology and the Anthropocene