2019 Program Archive: Cross-Cultural Scientific Investigation: Connecting Indigenous Knowledge with Satellites

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Cross-Cultural Scientific Investigation: Connecting Indigenous Knowledge with Satellites

Bonnie J Murray
Time Slot: 
Working Groups and Trainings 2
Session Type: 
Working Group

Indigenous knowledge systems include a deep understanding of natural environments that has evolved over generations of lived and spiritual experiences and observations. This understanding is passed down from generation to generation through storytelling, songs and other ceremonial practices. This knowledge has been used by indigenous communities to manage natural and cultural resources and develop adaptation strategies for changing climate conditions, but these knowledge systems have been undervalued by non-indigenous western scientists. Earth observation data from satellites and other sources provide useful insight into the nature and characteristics of changing climate conditions, but need in-situ data to provide a complete picture. Recognizing and including indigenous knowledge as a valid form of in-situ data would provide an enhanced understanding of the natural environment. There is a distinct need to 1) develop ways to incorporate different knowledge systems into monitoring natural resources and developing adaptation strategies; 2) identify climate change uncertainty across different cultures; and 3) discuss strategies to build cross-cultural collaborations between Sovereign Tribal Nations, government agencies and academia. Building collaborations with Sovereign Nations requires an emphasis on indigenous empowerment and self-determination, as well as recognizing indigenous historical and cultural practices. This working group will bring together scholars, Indigenous Knowledge Holders, and multiple government agencies for a discussion on addressing these needs. Outcomes will include protocols for collaborations, specific ways to use indigenous knowledge with Earth observations for natural resource monitoring and a better understanding of the meaning and importance of uncertainty in climate projections.

Cross-Cutting Themes: