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The Contribution and Centrality of Indigenous Knowledge Systems to Developing Sustainable Adaptation Strategies, K-A. S. Kassam

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K-A. S. Kassam (College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY, United States of America), at the Our Common Future Under Climate Change conference, July 7-10 in Paris, France.

More at http://www.commonfuture-paris2015.org/

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The Contribution and Centrality of Indigenous Knowledge Systems to Developing Sustainable Adaptation Strategies, K-A. S. Kassam

  1. 1. Role of Indigenous Knowledge Systems in Anticipating Change: The Ecology of Time Our Common Future Under Climate Change Session: Building Resilience to Climate and Weather Extremes Karim-Aly Kassam, PhD Cornell University July 8, 2015 Painting by: Hakim Zavkibekov
  2. 2. Role of Indigenous Knowledge Systems in Anticipating Change: The Ecology of Time I. Issue II. Propositions III. Context IV. Ecological Calendar V. Next Steps VI. Questions
  3. 3. I. Issue Indigenous Arctic, Boreal Forest, and Mountain Societies are at the vanguard of climate change. Direct impact on their livelihoods and food systems Lack of predictability => Anxiety Not only an intellectual challenge but an issue of justice (Papal Encyclical)
  4. 4. II. Propositions What if time is biophysical embedded in social context imbued with cultural meaning? What if time is unique and not a fungible commodity? What if time is relational and flexible? This conception of time may help us anticipate climatic variation
  5. 5. III. Context
  6. 6. III. Context
  7. 7. III. Context Agricultural (farmers) and Pastoral (herders)
  8. 8. IV. Ecological Calendars Farmers & herders have integrated their activities with their ecological surroundings Measure time with respect to phenological signs (budding, birds, insects) and biophysical habitat
  9. 9. IV. Ecological Calendars
  10. 10. IV. Ecological Calendars Complex Connectivity Other Humans Other Life: Animals, insects plants Physical Habitat: Glaciers, rivers, streams Mountain Societies Relations RelationsRelations
  11. 11. IV. Ecological Calendars Context Specific Specific to altitude, aspect, valley, ecological zone, & culture (niche) Integrative & refined
  12. 12. IV. Ecological Calendars Diversity
  13. 13. IV. Ecological Calendars Diversity Adaptive Flexible Ecologically and socio-culturally grounded Implications
  14. 14. V. Next Steps Transdisciplianry science in collaboration with indigenous ecological knowledge: – Update – Revitalize – Develop anticipatory capacity
  15. 15. V. Next Steps Particular: Ecologically and Culturally grounded (Kassam et al. 2011) Universal: Evidence of widespread potential (Ahas and Aasa 2013; Alessa et al. 2014; Cochran et al. 2015; Franco 2015; Woodward et al. 2012)
  16. 16. V. Next Steps AGU and MIT Climate Co- Lab Challenge Academic Venture Fund: Proof of concept International conference on Indigenous and Place- based Knowledge and Climate Science – Ecological Calendars
  17. 17. VI. Thank You, Questions?

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