Poster Presentation Lowitja Institute International Indigenous Health and Wellbeing Conference 2016

Culturally situated research: Bridging cultural responsibility and research methods, examining social emotional wellbeing with Indigenous peoples traditional food systems and food sovereignty (#429)

Tim Stevenson 1 , Stewart Sutherland
  1. Food Matters Manitoba, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada

Our approach to examining traditional food and Social Emotional Wellbeing (SEWB) encourages and supports local Indigenous community food activities, while simultaneously undertaking research.

Many Indigenous people are reluctant to share information to outside researchers as Indigenous peoples have been ‘studied to death’ and the research information becomes the Intellectual Property of the researcher leaving the community with no benefit. This has led to a subset of ethics dealing with research conducted on Indigenous peoples. In the context of Indigenous people studying other Indigenous people the Situated Research theory transforms into Culturally Situated Research. This has many overlaying cultural expectations, such as responsibility for the research to benefit the community. 

This presentation will share experiences with culturally situated research as a methodology and engaging Indigenous communities with traditional food research. Food is a central staple in within Indigenous communities. It represents cultural identity and shapes cultural worldview within our relationship to our territories and each other. It also presents a unique approach to maximise utility by filling a research gap while simultaneously improving the health, economic, social and food security status of Indigenous communities. Indigenous peoples and communities are taking control in research conducted within them. They want to ensure that they remain a part of the research project and that there are benefits to and for them.