Traditional Knowledge Action Plan to be developed for Guyana

DPI, Guyana, Thursday, January 11, 2018

The Ministry of Indigenous Peoples’ Affairs will be working on developing a Traditional Knowledge Action Plan, which will serve as a guide for integrating Traditional Knowledge into policy and practice in Guyana.

Minister of Indigenous Peoples Affairs, Valerie Garrido-Lowe.

The Tradition Knowledge project will seek to achieve the Convention Aichi Biodiversity Target 18; incorporating traditional knowledge into biodiversity policy for poverty reduction.

Minister within the Ministry of Indigenous Peoples’ Affairs, Valerie Garrido-Lowe explained that, although there is increasing recognition for the importance of Traditional Knowledge within biodiversity conservation and poverty alleviation, there is an insufficient focus on the development and testing of participatory, transparent and evidence-based processes for Traditional Knowledge integration.

Therefore, the project will provide policy-level guidance, capacity development and research-led experience for incorporating Traditional Knowledge into conservation and sustainable development decision-making, monitoring and policy.

This will be done through evaluating the opportunities and barriers to Traditional Knowledge, integration using case studies focused on protected areas management and streamlining a participatory cross-scalar process to incorporate local Traditional Knowledge at the national scale.

The project will be implemented over a three-year period. The process began in 2017 with the launch of the Traditional Knowledge project with the assistance of the British High Commissioner.  The Ministry has also started the Free, Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC) process in the communities of the North Rupununi, seeking consent for research to be carried out in their communities.

Inception meetings with project partners were also started in September 2017, to discuss project activities including Project Theory of Change, project research methodology, Policy Review on the Treatment of Traditional Knowledge in the various sectors in Guyana and literature review on Traditional Knowledge Integration across the world.  A local programme ‘What is the Know?’ was also launched on Radio Paiwomak.

The knowledge gained from this project will be used to make decisions to protect the history, land forest, biodiversity culture and sustainable livelihood of the 215 indigenous communities.

The project is a collaborative effort between the ministry and North Rupununi District Development Board (NRDDB), South Central Peoples Development Association (SCPDA), Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), The Protect Areas Commission (PAC), Royal Holloway-University of London, World Conservation and Monitoring Centre (WCMC) and Cobra Collective (CC).

According to Minister Garrido-Lowe, the Action Plan can be used as a model of best practices for other countries of the Guiana Shield and worldwide.


By: Synieka Thorne


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