Traditional Knowledge and Wetlands
People have coexisted with wetlands since prehistory, making use of their multiple beneficial services and averting unintended consequences. It is therefore unsurprising that a depth of traditional knowledge has been deduced, shared, and subsequently evolved. Modern pressures on wetlands have culminated in international collaboration and knowledge-sharing to avert resource degradation, most evidently under the Ramsar Convention, seeking the wise and sustainable use of wetlands. However, many such sustainable management practices are encoded in traditional knowledge and evolved outside of the contemporary appropriative, industrialized world view. It is with good reason that Principle 11 of the Ecosystem Approach recognizes that “The ecosystem approach should consider all forms of relevant information, including scientific and indigenous and local knowledge, innovations and practices,” and that Principle 12 states that “The ecosystem approach should involve all relevant sectors of society and scientific disciplines”. Not only is inclusion of technical, traditional, and other forms of knowledge valuable for informing more durable management strategies, it is also essential to support more equitable and economically efficient decisions that take account of the interests of all in society.
KeywordsTraditional knowledge Ecosystem approach Indigenous Equitable Paddy Common pool resource
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