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What is Local Knowledge?

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What is Local Knowledge?
'Local and indigenous knowledge' refers to the cumulative and complex bodies of knowledge, know-how, practices and representations that are maintained and developed by peoples with extended histories of interactions with the natural environment. These cognitive systems are part of a complex that also includes language, attachment to place, spirituality and worldview. Many different terms are used to refer to this knowledge, these include:
  • traditional ecological knowledge (TEK)
  • indigenous knowledge (IK)
  • local knowledge
  • rural peoples'/ farmers' knowledge
  • ethnobiology / ethnobotany / ethnozoology
  • ethnoscience
  • folk science
  • indigenous science
These many terms coexist because the wide range of social, political and scientific contexts have made it all but impossible to for a single term to be suitable in all circumstances.The LINKS project promotes an all-encompassing approach to local & indigenous knowledge. For in many cultures, the 'rational' or 'objective' cannot be separated from the 'sacred' or 'intuitive'. Nature and Culture are not opposed and circumscribed by sharp boundaries. Knowledge, practice and representations are intertwined and mutually dependent.

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