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Project Report | Mar 7, 2024
ISE Congress 2024: Fostering Indigenous & Local Perspectives on Biodiversity & Cultural Landscape

By The Global Diversity Foundation | Project Team

It gives us great pleasure to share with you, our GlobalGiving community, that Global Diversity Foundation is co-organising the 18th International Society of Ethnobiology (ISE) Congress, taking place in Marrakech, May 2024. The Congress will bring together scholars, activists, practitioners, and visionaries from over 60 countries, including over 50 changemakers from our Global Environments Network. These changemakers will be offering formal presentations, workshops and leading arts-based immersive experiences over the Congress period. Some of these sessions will be recorded and available on our website. 

Taking place in the vibrant city of Marrakech, surrounded by the scenic High Atlas landscapes, the Congress aims to seamlessly blend discussions on biodiversity and cultural landscapes, delving into the intricate relationships among animals, plants, and human-shaped environments.

Historical Background:

The ISE Congress stands as a manifestation of the core mandate of the International Society of Ethnobiology (ISE) to cultivate an 'ethical space.' This space is designed to facilitate the interaction and exchange of information among diverse worldviews across geographical and cultural boundaries, establishing an interactive platform for cross-cultural exchanges. The ISE's comprehensive work extends across the realms of research, policy development, and education within a global, multi-disciplinary, and cross-cultural context. This positions the ISE as a leading authority in creating and disseminating insights into concepts and practices that support bio-cultural diversity. This work is especially pertinent to community and ecosystem resilience, adaptive change, and addressing the challenges of global warming.

The inaugural event, the First International Congress of Ethnobiology, took place in Belém, Brazil, in 1988. More than 600 delegates representing 35 countries, including representatives from 16 indigenous organisations, actively participated in this historic Congress. A pivotal outcome of this gathering was the establishment of the International Society of Ethnobiology (ISE), laying the foundation for a global collaborative network dedicated to the exploration and preservation of vital links between human societies and the natural world.

Overview of the 18th ISE Congress:

The primary goal of the 18th edition is to bring together biodiversity and cultural landscapes, providing a dynamic platform for exploration and discussion through oral presentations, panels, and posters. Our intention is to venture beyond the prosaic to embrace the poetic, featuring innovative and interactive sessions. The Congress will delve into biodiversity and cultural landscapes, as conceptualised and contested by decolonial, indigenous, and local practitioners and scholars.

The inclusive discourse aims to nurture a global dialogue, inspiring multidisciplinary research across continents. This effort is underpinned by the celebration of contemporary concepts defined in international conventions, observed in events like the International Day for Biological Diversity and World Heritage Day.

Themes of the 18th ISE Congress:

1. Landscape Stewardship, Management Practices, and Governance:

  • Exploring opportunities, challenges, and innovations in landscape stewardship.
  • Focusing on preserving tangible and intangible heritage, including Indigenous-led systems.
  • Critically engaging with strategies for biocultural conservation.

2. Agriculture, Nutrition, Health, and Human Well-being:

  • Reflecting on the intersection of ethnobiology with global health.
  • Exploring the role of biocultural landscapes in food, nutrition, sovereignty, and overall human well-being.
  • Encouraging critical dialogues on forgotten foods, medicines, and the interface between industrial and artisanal agrifood systems.

3. Decolonial, Inter and Transdisciplinary Approaches, Methods, and Practices in Ethnobiology:

  • Discussing innovative methods and approaches in ethnobiology.
  • Inviting critical dialogue about the challenges and opportunities of community-led action and research.
  • Reflecting on ethics, including Indigenous and local community rights over knowledge and data.

4. Global Change: Landscapes and People in Transition:

  • Exploring questions of resilience and transitions in biocultural landscapes.
  • Analysing aspects of continuity and change amidst global socioeconomic and environmental changes.

5. Spirituality, Art, and Cultural Identities:

  • Integrating research, artistic practices, and experiences celebrating cultural identities.
  • Welcoming sessions addressing the interplay between biocultural landscapes and spirituality, identity, power, and justice.

The Congress's inclusive and expansive approach, honours the legacy and vision of ISE's founder, Darrel Posey (1947 – 2001). Posey's commitment to exploring biocultural diversity in all its dimensions serves as a guiding force, inspiring practitioners and scholars alike.

If you would like to find out more, or help support a changemakers to attend the ISE, then please do get in touch. We would love to hear from you!

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Organization Information

Global Diversity Foundation

Location: Bristol, VT - USA
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Project Leader:
Nessie Reid
Canterbury , Kent United Kingdom
$68,251 raised of $75,000 goal
 
317 donations
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