beyond the divide between indigenous and academic knowledge: Causal and mechanistic explanations in a Brazilian fishing community

Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 1 (91):296–306 (2022)
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Transdisciplinary research challenges the divide between Indigenous and academic knowledge by bringing together epistemic resources of heterogeneous stakeholders. The aim of this article is to explore causal explanations in a traditional fishing community in Brazil that provide resources for transdisciplinary collaboration, without neglecting differences between Indigenous and academic experts. Semi-structured interviews were carried out in a fishing village in the North shore of Bahia and our findings show that community members often rely on causal explanations for local ecological phenomena with different degrees of complexity. While these results demonstrate the ecological expertise of local community members, we also argue that recognition of local expertise needs to reflect on differences between epistemic communities by developing a culturally sensitive model of transdisciplinary knowledge negotiation.

Author Profiles

Luana Poliseli
Konrad Lorenz Institute for Evolution and Cognition Research
David Ludwig
Wageningen University and Research


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