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Indigenous knowledge for more sustainable land management
26 Jan 2012
Although Indigenous people presently manage around 20 per cent of the Australian continent, one Charles Sturt University (CSU) academic believes there is an opportunity to do more.
Professor Max Finlayson, Director of CSU’s Institute for Land, Water and Society is co-author of a paper, Synthesis: Australian approaches for managing ‘country’ using Indigenous and non-Indigenous knowledge, which is published in the new special issue of the journal Ecological Management & Restoration - Indigenous Land and Water Management . The journal examines Australian approaches to managing ‘country’ using Indigenous and non-Indigenous knowledge while placing them in an international context.
“While we are edging around whether or not we have the courage to recognise Indigenous people in our Constitution, we have an opportunity to ensure equity with the commercial use of our biodiversity and associated traditional knowledge,” Professor Finlayson said.
“The principles outlined in the paper encourage greater cooperation and exchange of knowledge between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people to ensure more sustainable land management and access to benefits from biodiversity.
“This is based around building trust between communities, providing incentives to ensure inclusiveness, being flexible, and allocating sufficient resources.”
Professor Finlayson says the paper also provides guidance in support of Australia’s recent signing of the Nagoya Protocol on Access to Genetic Resources and the Fair and Equitable Sharing of Benefits Arising from their Utilization to the Convention on Biological Diversity.
For interviews with Director of CSU’s Institute for Land, Water and Society, Professor Max Finlayson, please phone 0458 271 580 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Ecological Management & Restoration is a publication of the Ecological Society of Australia. The special issue (guest editor Dr Emilie-Jane Ens from ANU) is freely available online and showcases how Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians work together in remote parts of central and northern Australia to develop innovative land and sea management projects. These projects combine Indigenous and non-Indigenous scientific knowledge and methods, highlighting the seldom documented voices and the input of indigenous peoples into conservation work. For a copy of the paper, click Synthesis: Australian approaches for managing 'country' using Indigenous and non-Indigenous knowledge.
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