August 2009

Latin American and Caribbean Indigenous and Local Community Capacity Building Workshop on the Convention on Biological Diversity including issues relevant to Article 8(j) Traditional Knowledge, and Access and Benefit-sharing
29 October – 31 October 2009 (Montreal, Canada)

The Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) is organizing a regional capacity-building workshop for indigenous and local community representatives on effective participation in the CBD processes, with a specific focus on the Working Groups on Article 8(j) and on access and benefit-sharing. The workshop aims specifically at building and strengthening capacity for indigenous and local community women. Indigenous and local community organizations from the Latin American and Caribbean region are invited to nominate representatives to the CBD Secretariat, at secretariat (at), by 11 September 2009, for consideration in the selection process. The CBD Secretariat will notify participants selected for funding to participate in the workshop by mid-September. Read the CBD notification [pdf] …


Bolivians look to ancient farming
BBC News, 19 August 2009

TRINIDAD, BOLIVIA: Farmers in Bolivia’s Amazon are experimenting with using a centuries-old irrigation system for their crops, which could provide them with better protection against climate change, reduce deforestation and improve food security. The system, which is part of a two-year project supported by the Kenneth Lee Foundation and Oxfam, is based on building “camellones”, raised earth platforms surrounded by canals. “One of the many extraordinary aspects of our camellones project is that poor communities living in the Beni today are using a similar technology to that developed by indigenous pre-Columbian cultures in the same region to solve a similar range of problems,” says Oscar Saavedra, the director of the Kenneth Lee foundation. Read the article …

Indigenous Agricultural Knowledge in Managing Climate Change
TK Community, 19 August 2009

LONDON, UK: Indigenous and traditional knowledge is being recognized for its critical role in managing climate change. Farmers in Bolivia’s Amazon are turning to traditional irrigation systems for more sustainable agriculture, and are building “camellones” resulting in a sustainable use of flood waters without loss of seeds and crops. In India, traditional indigenous engineering is being implemented in order to establish sustainable systems of water management in modern agriculture. Read the article …

India to ink agreement with USPTMO to prevent wrong patents
Economic Times, 19 August 2009

CHENNAI, INDIA: As announced by Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh, India will soon sign an agreement with the US Patent and Trademark Office, to provide US patent examiners with access to the country’s Traditional Knowledge Digital Library, a database on traditionally-used herbs and plants. This aims to prevent granting of erroneous patents on India’s traditional products and knowledge. Read the article …

Indigenous knowledge for economic sustainability
Indian Country Today, 21 August 2009

NEW YORK, USA: This article argues that a mixed strategy of traditional economy, individual market enterprise and tribal government-managed corporations can coexist and provide multiple strategies and tools for moving toward sustained economic self-sufficiency in ways that are informed by indigenous values, culture and interests. Indigenous knowledge should be part of the philosophy of economic development in American Indian communities. Read the article …

Fresh from the Ground – Traditional Plant Knowledge in the Cyber Age
IPACC, July 2009

These two videos produced by the indigenous peoples of Africa co-ordinating committee review developoments regarding traditional plant knowledge in Africa, including community involvement in sustainable use initiatives and integration of traditional knowledge with modern technology. Fresh from the Ground part I … Fresh from the Ground part II …

Indigenous systems of water management and their modern applications
Organiser, 16 August 2009

NEW DELHI, INDIA: Indigenous knowledge in India has always developed practical ways for society to live in a sustainable manner with nature, in full respect with the diversity of agro-ecological climatic zones. There are various types of methods of water harvesting in India, characterized by: use of local resources and technology; community-based operation; community-driven decentralized water management; and sustainable conservation and use of natural resources. The author notes the need for revival of systems using indigenous knowledge, including interventions to understand traditional systems and use of indigenous knowledge; mobilization of community around land, water and forest; participation in rejuvenating old structures and construction of new structures; and creation of new village level and river basin institutions. Read the article …

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