Conference paper

Indigenous communities, disasters, and disaster research: surviving disaster research on, with and by Maori

29 Oct 2014
Description

This paper presents insights into the impact on Maori of the Christchurch earthquakes, including the role of Indigenous Knowledge (Matauranga Maori) in disasters, and the role of Indigenous culture in the response phases of disasters. Drawing on experiences of two previous and one current project the author discusses some of the ethical, practical, and logistical challenges of working with Indigenous individuals and collectives, and challenge the assumption that ‘to be Indigenous is to be resilient’.

Abstract

This paper presents insights into the impacts on Māori of the Christchurch earthquakes, and draws on personal research experiences to discuss disaster research with impacted minority communities. Three topics are discussed. The first is the role of Indigenous Knowledge (IK) in disasters. If IK such as Mātauranga Māori (Māori knowledge) is to be ‘integrated’ with science to somehow build societal resilience, which systems are these integration processes building the resilience of, for whom? The second issue is the role of Indigenous culture in the response phases of disasters. The concern is that our culture is in danger of reification, posited as a necessary and sufficient condition for our resilience, and as researchers we are poorly equipped to deal with culture as a pedestal adornment. Drawing on the experiences of two previous and one current project, there is a discussion of some of the ethical, practical, and logistical challenges of working with Indigenous individuals and collectives and challenge the assumption, often codified by Indigenous researchers ourselves, that ‘to be indigenous is to be resilient’

Publication Details
Published year only: 
2014
11
Share
Share
Subject Areas
Advertisement