Efforts at combining or bridging Traditional and Scientiﬁc knowledges within Canadian resource efforts at combining or bridging Traditional and Scientiﬁc knowledges within Canadian resource management institutions have been well researched. But there has been less research which examines this process in the context of large-scale resource extraction activities. This study explores the views and responses of Aboriginal participants to knowledge bridging in an environmental governance institution overseeing uranium mining in Saskatchewan, Canada. Consistent with other Canadian studies in the resource management and environmental assessment context, many knowledge bridging problems were evident. These included the empirical observations of animal behaviours that were not meaningfully engaged with by non-Aboriginal participants. In addition, the ethical dimensions of Traditional Knowledge (TK) were ignored. However, Aboriginal participants also strategically navigated the governance space by uncovering 'openings' to challenge scientiﬁc knowledge claims through TK, as well as assert, confront, and educate industry and government representatives with their own technical and local knowledges. Some participants also recognized ‘closures’, and chose to withhold TK based on their distrust of how it could be (mis)used. Given the diversity of views about knowledge bridging in this context, and the many problems identiﬁed, any top-down efforts to promote TK in certain governance spaces should be carefully reconsidered.
Haalboom, B. (2016). Pursuing openings and navigating closures for aboriginal knowledges in environmental governance of uranium mining, Saskatchewan, Canada. The Extractive Industries and Society, 3(4), 1010-1017. doi: 10.1016/j.exis.2016.09.002