News & Views

Traditional Knowledge and Climate Science

Climate impacts on Indigenous territories and communities are anticipated to be both early and severe due to their location in vulnerable environments, including small islands, high altitude zones, desert margins and the circumpolar Arctic.

Indigenous and marginalized peoples, however, are not just victims of climate change.

Their accumulated knowledge makes them excellent observers of environmental change and related impacts. Attentiveness to environmental variability, shift and trends is an integral part of their ways of life. Community-based and local knowledge may thus offer valuable insights into environmental change due to climate change, and complement broader-scale scientific research with local precision and nuance.

The United Nations University Institute of Advanced Studies has a Traditional Knowledge Initiative that focusses on this important intersection. This video is one in a series on Traditional Knowledge and Climate Science. Learn more here.