Traditional Knowledge and Environmental Change in Vanuatu

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dc.contributor.advisor Parson, M en Rarai, Allan en 2018-11-08T22:21:13Z en 2018 en
dc.identifier.uri en
dc.description Full Text is available to authenticated members of The University of Auckland only. en
dc.description.abstract Over the last two decades a wealth of empirical studies demonstrates the ways in which Traditional Knowledge can be utilised to improve natural resource management (NRM), disaster risk reduction (DRR), and sustainable development approaches. It is widely acknowledged that TK still underpins or can contribute towards biodiversity conservation, sustainability, and increasingly climate change adaptation and DRR strategies. Policy and science tend to dominate adaptation strategies for Pacific communities while little attention is put on traditional knowledge adaptation strategies. The traditional knowledge that has been used for generations by local people through experiences, interactions and how they apply this local knowledge to adjust to past and current environmental changes could be used as strategies for adaptation. Taking into account this narrative, this thesis investigates the extent to which traditional knowledge is used by local people of North Pentecost (NP) in Vanuatu to adjust to natural environmental changes. This thesis argues that traditional knowledge (TK), as part of the original belief system and values, can be incorporated into the development of community-based adaptation strategies. The qualitative research approach is used for this study. An individual semi-structured interview method was employed to collect primary data in the field. A total of 25 (n=25) men (elders) who are experts on traditional knowledge of weather and climate were interviewed. Thematical analysis (TA) is used to analyse the data and to identify evidence of traditional knowledge used by the indigenous people through the process of coding and identification of key themes. Three key components of TK were identified; (1) Facts and Information (Environmental monitoring), (2) Management strategies and practices (Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) and Natural Resource Management (NRM), (3) beliefs, and worldviews that connect the local people to their knowledge system of the natural environment. Furthermore, this study also demonstrates local people’s perceptions of change (environmental and social) and its impacts on the socio-cultural livelihood of the local communities. The results of this research proved that most aspects of traditional knowledge have values and belief systems rooted in the local culture of local communities that helped them to sustain and adjust to changes in the natural environment. For example, the traditional knowledge indicators of fauna and flora, and atmospheric and astronomical conditions were used by local people to predict short (weather) and longterm (climate) changes in the natural environment. Moreover, TK has an enormous capacity for adaptive management strategies that are essential for adjusting to weather and climate (variabilities and changes) extremes. A community-based adaptation (CBA) strategy based on a participatory approach is designed to elevate the importance of TK within the broader concept of adaptation and to aid in incorporating TK into CBA. The findings of this thesis showed that traditional knowledge has been significantly used with the local communities and will continue to help them adapt to the changes caused by extreme climate variabilities. iii Key Words: Traditional Knowledge, Climate Change Adaptation, Community-Based Adaptation, Natural en
dc.publisher ResearchSpace@Auckland en
dc.relation.ispartof Masters Thesis - University of Auckland en
dc.relation.isreferencedby UoA99265138314002091 en
dc.rights Items in ResearchSpace are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated. Previously published items are made available in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher. en
dc.rights Restricted Item. Full Text is available to authenticated members of The University of Auckland only. en
dc.rights.uri en
dc.title Traditional Knowledge and Environmental Change in Vanuatu en
dc.type Thesis en Environmental Management en The University of Auckland en Masters en
dc.rights.holder Copyright: The author en
pubs.elements-id 756053 en
pubs.record-created-at-source-date 2018-11-09 en

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