Vulnerability of Indigenous Knowledge Systems’ initiatives in South Africa.

“ ... it is not just about woven baskets and handicraft for tourists per se.... 
[It is about] exploring indigenous technological knowledge in agriculture, fishing, forest resource exploitation, ..., medicine, pharmacology, and recasting the potentialities they represent in a context of democratic participation for community, national and global development in real time...”
         Dr Catherine Odora-Hoppers

This study was inspired by Matthew Hill’s article on Biopiracy published on the Financial Mail. The article indicated the level of vulnerability of the majority of African states by international companies where resources are taken by international corporations out of Africa for nothing and giving nothing in return to the Knowledge holders.

The topic induced intellectual curiosity that led to the convening of a conference on “Synergizing  Indigenous Knowledge Systems into Business Innovation through Knowledge Management”. 

The conference aimed at identifying challenges and a possible solution towards ensuring that indigenous knowledge is documented, commercialized and knowledge holders are rewarded accordingly.  Delegates highlighted the link between indigenous knowledge and global knowledge systems and some of the lessons learnt from development initiatives. The paper concludes with recommendations for enhancing the role of information and communication technologies in particular to collect, preserve indigenous knowledge, detailed treatment of these issues but rather to raise salient points around the intersection between information and communication technologies and IK systems.  read more here ....

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