Western Science Meets Indigenous Communities

Nov. 5, 2021
Rising Voices for Indigenous and Earth Science

The 9th Annual Rising Voices Workshop took place virtually on September 29th- October 1st at the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, CO, where it is housed. This years theme was Centering Justice in the Convergence of Sciences, Communities, and Actions. Rising Voices builds partnerships and capacity within and between Indigenous communities and Western scientists. Their work ensures that Indigenous voices remain an integral part of climate change and adaptation conversations. NNI's Mary Beth Jäger (Citizen Potawatomi Nation) facilitated a Food Systems working group and Stephanie Russo Carroll (Ahtna) and Andrew Martinez (O’odham, Diegueño, and Yoeme) presented on Indigenous Data Sovereignty and Governance. It was the third year NNI participated in the workshop.

Dominique David-Chavez, former NNI postdoc, (Arawak Taíno) was the keynote speaker on the third day of Rising Voices morning. Afterwards Carroll and Martinez presented on the plenary panel Centering Justice in Indigenous Data Sovereignty and addressed the importance of Indigenous data sovereignty as it takes its place in the forefront of science and research. They highlighted opportunities and challenges for nations of how to apply Indigenous data sovereignty frameworks in research projects and the importance of mentorship. “Sometimes doing this work I’m more focused on the projects in front of me and don’t step back to look at the whole picture of NNI’s impact. Dominique, Stephanie, and Andrew have added so much strength to Indigenous governance in data conversations. I’m proud to be one of their colleagues,” stated Jäger after attending Rising Voices.


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