Cooperative research: an example from the Wet Tropics of Queensland

Cullen-Unsworth, Leanne Claire, Butler, James R.A., Hill, Rosemary, and Wallace, Marilyn (2010) Cooperative research: an example from the Wet Tropics of Queensland. International Journal of Interdisciplinary Social Sciences, 5 (6). pp. 139-155.

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In recent years there has been wider recognition of the important role that Indigenous knowledge can play in developing and implementing natural resource management (NRM) strategies. The biophysical surroundings of many Indigenous peoples are of symbolic significance to them, hence their perception and values of natural resources may be vastly different to those of scientists or managers. We discuss a research approach that explicitly embraces the co-production of knowledge to facilitate NRM in Australia. We demonstrate that if particular methodologies are used and specific criteria met, cooperative research can represent one pathway for the integration of Indigenous and scientific knowledge. We suggest an important step for genuine knowledge and systems integration is in research direction-setting. Our approach practices multi-directional learning and mutual benefit, promoting cross transfer of skills by the cooperative generation and documentation of information. Indigenous knowledge and associated systems are strengthened and the value of Indigenous knowledge and systems is recognised alongside accepted scientific knowledge and methods. Essential to the methodology used is the creation of partnerships based on trust between co-researchers and the generation of genuine action research outcomes.

Item ID: 15312
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1833-1882
Keywords: cooperative research, Indigenous knowledge, scientific knowledge, research partnerships, research methods, action research, adaptive co-management, knowledge integration
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© Common Ground, Leanne Claire Cullen-Unsworth, James R A Butler, Rosemary Hill, Marilyn Wallace. All Rights Reserved, Permissions:

Date Deposited: 15 May 2011 02:53
FoR Codes: 05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0502 Environmental Science and Management > 050201 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Environmental Knowledge @ 100%
SEO Codes: 95 CULTURAL UNDERSTANDING > 9599 Other Cultural Understanding > 959999 Cultural Understanding not elsewhere classified @ 50%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9606 Environmental and Natural Resource Evaluation > 960699 Environmental and Natural Resource Evaluation not elsewhere classified @ 50%
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