1. Cree Creation Story
3. Case Background: Decolonizing Water
3.1. Indigenous Research Methodologies
Indigenous methods do not flow from western philosophies, they flow from tribal epistemologies. If tribal knowledges are not referenced as legitimate knowledge systems guiding Indigenous methods and protocols within the research process, there is a congruency problem. Furthermore, by not recognizing Indigenous inquiry for what it is—a distinctive methodology—the political and practical quagmire will persist. (p. 37)
3.2. First Nations Water Crisis
4. Discussion and Analysis
4.1. Indigenous Research Contributions: Understanding Indigenous Water Relations
The ethic of responsibility to water reflects the notion that water is understood as a living force which must be protected and nurtured; it is not a commodity to be bought and sold. Water, according to First Nations peoples, has cleansing and purifying powers. It is the giver of life with which babies are born. It is imperative in our traditions to keep the water clean so it can continue to fulfill its purpose. (p. 501)
Laws govern interactions between beings. In Anishinaabe law, we expand our understanding of “beings” to include life forms such as animals, plants, rocks, in other words anything that has a spirit. Spirits are considered to be beings with whom we interact. Anishinaabe law considers the interactions between and within these beings and understands them to be governed by spiritual, natural and customary laws. Sacred law is the law that is handed down to us by the spirit. Natural law is dictated by what we observe in nature and that “behaviour” which we model ourselves by. (p. 44)
The rich stories, ceremonies, and traditions within First Nations… contain the law in First Nations communities as they represent the accumulated wisdom and experience of First Nations conflict resolution. Some of these narratives pre-date the common law, have enjoyed their effectiveness for millennia, and have yet to be overruled or extinguished out of existence. These laws relative to environmental protection are strong and contain legal principles that could be integrated into US and Canadian institutions. (p. 454)
4.2. Indigenous Research Contributions: Indigenous Water Governance Case Analysis
4.2.1. Redesigning the Research Lab: “Two-Eyed Seeing”
4.2.2. Indigenous Research and International Water Policy: Knowledge Sharing Frameworks
4.2.3. Research Methods for Decolonizing Water: Reciprocal Learning
4.2.4. Case Study Synthesis: Reciprocal Relations, Reciprocal Learning
Conflicts of Interest
- First Nations Environmental Assessment Technical Working Group. First Nations Environmental Assessment Toolkit for Ontario; Chiefs of Ontario: Toronto, ON, Canada, 2009.
- Doerfler, J.; Sinclair, N.J.; Stark, H.K. (Eds.) Centering Anishinaabeg Studies: Understanding the World through Stories; Michigan State University Press: East Lansing, MI, USA; United States & University of Manitoba Press: Winnipeg, MB, Canada, 2013; ISBN 978-1-60917-353-1. [Google Scholar]
- Borrows, J. Living between Water and Rocks: First Nations, Environmental Planning and Democracy. Univ. Tor. Law J. 1997, 47, 417–468. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Linton, J.; Budds, J. The Hydrosocial Cycle: Defining and mobilizing a relational-dialectical approach to water. Geoforum 2014, 57 (Suppl. C), 170–180. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Gupta, J.; Pahl-Wostl, C.; Zondervan, R. “Glocal” Water Governance: A Multi-level challenge in the Anthropocene. Curr. Opin. Environ. Sustain. 2013, 5, 573–580. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Lukawiecki, J. Glass Half Empty? Year 1 Progress toward Resolving Drinking Water Advisories in Nine First Nations in Ontario; David Suzuki Foundation: Vancouver, BC, Canada, 2017; pp. 4–35. ISBN 978-1-988424-03-3. [Google Scholar]
- Phare, M.A. Denying the Source: The Crisis of First Nations Water Rights; Rocky Mountain Books: Victoria, BC, Canada, 2009; ISBN 978-1-897522-61-5. [Google Scholar]
- Klasing, A.M. Make It Safe: Canada’s Obligation to End the First Nation Water Crisis; Human Rights Watch: New York, NY, USA, 2016; ISBN 978-1-6231-33634. [Google Scholar]
- Galway, L.P. Boiling over: A Descriptive Analysis of Drinking Water Advisories in First Nations Communities in Ontario, Canada. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2016, 13, 505. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
- Castleden, H.; Crooks, V.A.; van Meerveld, I. Examining the public health implications of drinking water–related behaviours and perceptions: A face-to-face exploratory survey of residents in eight coastal communities in British Columbia and Nova Scotia. Can. Geogr. (Le Géographe Canadien) 2015, 59, 111–125. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- CBC News. Justin Trudeau Vows to End First Nations Reserve Boil-Water Advisories within 5 Years; The Canadian Press: Toronto, ON, Canada, 2015; Available online: http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/canada-election-2015-justin-trudeau-first-nations-boil-water-advisories-1.3258058 (accessed on 17 August 2017).
- Galloway, G. Unresolved Water Advisories Creating ‘Health Emergency’ for First Nations; The Globe and Mail: Ottawa, ON, Canada, 2015; Available online: https://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/unresolved-water-advisories-in-aboriginal-communities-creating-a-health-emergency/article27627801/ (accessed on 17 August 2017).
- Botelho-Urbanski, J. ‘It’s Just Mind-Boggling’: Before Canada 150, More Than 150 Drinking Water Advisories Listed Online; Metro News: Winnipeg, MB, Canada, 2017; Available online: http://www.metronews.ca/news/winnipeg/2017/06/29/canada-lists-more-than-150-drinking-water-advisories.html (accessed on 17 August 2017).
- Bakker, K.; Cook, C. Water governance in Canada: Innovation and fragmentation. Int. J. Water Resour. Dev. 2011, 27, 275–289. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- McGregor, D. Traditional Knowledge and Water Governance: The Ethic of Responsibility. Altern. Int. J. Indig. Peoples 2014, 10, 493–507. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Hanrahan, M.; Dosu Jnr, B. The Rocky Path to Source Water Protection: A Cross-Case Analysis of Drinking Water Crises in Small Communities in Canada. Water 2017, 9, 388. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Collins, L.; McGregor, D.; Allen, S.; Murray, C.; Metcalfe, C. Source Water Protection Planning for Ontario First Nations Communities: Case Studies Identifying Challenges and Outcomes. Water 2017, 9, 550. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Blackstock, M. Water: A First Nations’ Spiritual and Ecological Perspective. J. Ecosyst. Manag. 2001, 1, 1–14. [Google Scholar]
- Kennedy, B. I Am the River, and the River Is Me: Implications of a River Receiving Personhood Status. Cultural Survival Quarterly Magazine, 2012. Available online: https://www.culturalsurvival.org/publications/cultural-survival-quarterly/i-am-river-and-river-me-implications-river-receiving (accessed on 18 August 2017).
- Lake, F.K.; Tripp, W.; Reed, R. The Karuk Tribe, Planetary Stewardship, and World Renewal on the Middle Klamath River, California. Bull. Ecol. Soc. Am. 2010, 91, 147–149. [Google Scholar]
- Reid, J.; Rout, M. Getting to know your food: The insights of indigenous thinking in food provenance. Agric. Hum. Values 2016, 33, 427–438. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Salmond, A. Tears of Rangi: Water, power, and people in New Zealand. HAU J. Ethnogr. Theory 2014, 4, 285–309. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Toussaint, S.; Sullivan, P.; Yu, S. Water Ways in Aboriginal Australia: An Interconnected Analysis 1. Anthropol. Forum 2005, 15, 61–74. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Wilson, N.J. Indigenous water governance: Insights from the Hydrosocial Relations of the Koyukon Athabascan village of Ruby, Alaska. Geoforum 2014, 57, 1–11. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Deloria, V. We Talk, You Listen: New Tribes, New Turf; Macmillan Publishing Company: New York, NY, USA, 1970; ISBN 978-0-8032-5985-0. [Google Scholar]
- Lyons, O. Traditional Native Philosophies Relating to Aboriginal Rights. In The Quest for Justice: Aboriginal Peoples and Aboriginal Rights; Boldt, M., Long, J.A., Eds.; University of Toronto Press: Toronto, ON, Canada, 1985; pp. 19–23. [Google Scholar]
- Little Bear, L. Naturalizing Indigenous Knowledge: Synthesis Paper; University of Saskatchewan, Aboriginal Education Resource Centre: Saskatoon, SK, Canada; First Nations and Adult Higher Education Consortium: Calgary, AB, Canada, 2009; pp. 1–28. Available online: http://www.afn.ca/uploads/files/education/21._2009_july_ccl-alkc_leroy_littlebear_naturalizing_indigenous_knowledge-report.pdf (accessed on 20 August 2017).
- Smith, L.T. Decolonizing Methodologies: Research and Indigenous Peoples; Zed Books: London, UK, 2012; ISBN 978-1-84813-950-3. [Google Scholar]
- Kovach, M. Indigenous Methodologies: Characteristics, Conversations and Contexts; University of Toronto Press: Toronto, ON, Canada, 2009; ISBN 978-1-4426-1211-2. [Google Scholar]
- Baydala, L.; Letourneau, N.; Bach, H.; Pearce, M.; Kennedy, M.; Rasmussen, C.; Sherman, J.; Charchun, J. Lessons Learned through Research with Mother Earth’s Children’s Charter School. Pimatisiwin J. Aborig. Indig. Commun. Health 2006, 5, 201–216. [Google Scholar]
- Castleden, H.; Garvin, T. Huu-ay-aht First Nation. Modifying Photovoice for Community-Based Participatory Indigenous Research. Soc. Sci. Med. 2008, 66, 1393–1405. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
- Latulippe, N. Situating the Work: A Typology of Traditional Knowledge Literature. Alternative 2015, 11, 118–131. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Diver, S. Negotiating Indigenous Knowledge at the Science-Policy Interface: Insights from the Xáxli’p Community Forest. Environ. Sci. Policy 2017, 73, 1–11. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- TallBear, K. Indigenous Bioscientists Constitute Knowledge across Cultures of Expertise and Tradition: An Indigenous Standpoint Research Project. In Re: Mindings: Co-Constituting Indigenous/Academic/Artistic Knowledges; Gardebo, J., Ohman, M.B., Maruyama, H., Eds.; The Hugo Valentin Centre, Uppsala University: Uppsala, Sweden, 2014; pp. 173–191. Available online: https://uu.diva-portal.org/smash/get/diva2:734635/FULLTEXT01.pdf (accessed on 21 August 2017).
- United Nations. United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples; The United Nations: New York, NY, USA, 2008; Available online: https://www.un.org/esa/socdev/unpfii/documents/DRIPS_en.pdf (accessed on 21 August 2017).
- Berkes, F. Sacred Ecology; Routledge: New York, NY, USA, 2012; ISBN 978-0-415-51732-4. [Google Scholar]
- Inter-Agency Support Group on Indigenous Peoples’ Issues. The Knowledge of Indigenous Peoples and Policies for Sustainable Development: Updates and Trends in the Second Decade of the World’s Indigenous Peoples; Inter-Agency Support Group on Indigenous Peoples’ Issues, United Nations: New York, NY, USA, 2014; Available online: http://www.un.org/en/ga/president/68/pdf/wcip/IASG%20Thematic%20Paper_%20Traditional%20Knowledge%20-%20rev1.pdf (accessed on 21 August 2017).
- United Nations, Human Rights. International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights; Office of the High Commissioner: New York, NY, USA, 1966; Available online: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/ProfessionalInterest/Pages/CCPR.aspx (accessed on 30 August 2017).
- Wilson, S. Research is Ceremony: Indigenous Research Methods; Fernwood Publishing Company: Halifax, NS, Canada, 2008; ISBN 978-1-55266-281-6. [Google Scholar]
- Absolon, K. Kaandossiwin: How We Come to Know; Fernwood Publishing Company: Halifax, NS, Canada, 2011; ISBN 978-1-55266-440-7. [Google Scholar]
- Kovach, M. Emerging from the Margins: Indigenous Methodologies. In Research as Resistance: Revisiting Critical, Indigenous, and Anti-Oppressive Approaches, 2nd ed.; Strega, S., Brown, L., Eds.; Canadian Scholars’ Press: Toronto, ON, Canada, 2015; pp. 43–64. ISBN 978-1-55130-882-1. [Google Scholar]
- Edwards, K.; Lund, C.; Mitchell, S.; Andersson, N. Trust the Process: Community-Based Researcher Partnerships. Pimatisiwin J. Aborig. Indig. Commun. Health 2008, 6, 186–199. [Google Scholar]
- Ermine, W.; Sinclair, R.; Jeffery, B. The Ethics of Research Involving Indigenous Peoples; Report of the Indigenous Peoples’ Health Centre to the Interagency Advisory Panel on Research Ethics; Indigenous Peoples’ Health Centre: Saskatoon, SK, Canada, 2004; Available online: http://iphrc.ca/pub/documents/ethics_review_iphrc.pdf (accessed on 22 August 2017).
- Patterson, M.; Jackson, R.; Edwards, N. Ethics in Aboriginal Research: Comments on Paradigms, Process and Two Worlds. Can. J. Aborig. Commun.-Based HIV/AIDS Res. 2006, 1, 47–61. [Google Scholar]
- Brant Castellano, M. Ethics of Aboriginal Research. J. Aborig. Health 2004, 1, 98–114. [Google Scholar]
- Tobias, T. Charting a Steady Course: Research Principles. In Living Proof: The Essential Data-Collection Guide for Indigenous Use-and-Occupancy Map Surveys; Ecotrust Canada: Vancouver, BC, Canada, 2009; pp. 126–131. ISBN 978-1-896866-07-9. [Google Scholar]
- Diver, W.S.; Higgins, M.N. Giving Back through Collaborative Research: Towards a Practice of Dynamic Reciprocity. J. Res. Pract. 2014, 10, 9. [Google Scholar]
- Kirkness, V.J.; Barnhardt, R. First Nations and higher education: The four R’s–respect, relevance, reciprocity, responsibility. J. Am. Indian Educ. 1991, 30, 1–15. [Google Scholar]
- Schnarch, B. Ownership, Control, Access, and Possession (OCAP) or Self-Determination Applied to Research: A Critical Analysis of Contemporary First Nations Research and Some Options for First Nations Communities. J. Aborig. Health 2004, 1, 80–95. [Google Scholar]
- Sabatier, P.A. An Advocacy Coalition Framework of Policy Change and the Role of Policy-Oriented Learning Therein. Policy Sci. 1988, 21, 129–168. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Sabatier, P.A.; Focht, W.; Lubell, M.; Trachtenberg, Z.; Vedlitz, A.; Matlock, M. (Eds.) Swimming Upstream: Collaborative Approaches to Watershed Management; The MIT Press: Cambridge, MA, USA; London, UK, 2005; ISBN 0-262-19520-8. [Google Scholar]
- Metcalfe, C. Protecting Drinking Water in Indigenous Communities in Canada’s North: RBC Blue Water Project. Institute for Watershed Science for the RBC Foundation, 2012. Available online: http://www.trentu.ca/iws/documents/RBC_Year_3_Report_FINAL_fordistribution_June_2012.pdf (accessed on 23 August 2017).
- Patrick, R.J. Uneven Access to Safe Drinking Water for First Nations in Canada: Connecting Health and Place through Source Water Protection. Health Place 2011, 17, 386–389. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
- Lam, S.; Cunsolo, A.; Sawatzky, A.; Ford, J.; Harper, S.L. How does the media portray drinking water security in Indigenous communities in Canada? An analysis of Canadian newspaper coverage from 2000–2015. BMC Public Health 2017, 17, 282. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
- Bradford, L.E.A.; Bharadwaj, L.A.; Okpalauwaekwe, U.; Waldner, C.L. Drinking Water Quality in Indigenous Communities in Canada and Health Outcomes: A Scoping Review. Int. J. Circumpolar Health 2016, 75, 32336. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
- Morrison, A.; Bradford, L.; Bharadwaj, L. Quantifiable progress of the First Nations Water Management Strategy, 2001–2013: Ready for regulation? Can. Water Resour. J. (Revue Canadienne Des Ressources Hydriques) 2015, 40, 352–372. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Cook, C.; Bakker, K. Water security: Debating an emerging paradigm. Glob. Environ. Chang. 2012, 22, 94–102. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- White, J.P.; Murphy, L.; Spence, N. Water and Indigenous Peoples: Canada’s Paradox. Int. Indig. Policy J. 2012, 3, 3. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Agrawal, A. Dismantling the Divide between Indigenous and Scientific Knowledge. Dev. Chang. 1995, 26, 413–439. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Nadasdy, P. Hunters and Bureaucrats: Power, Knowledge, and Aboriginal-State Relations in the Southwest Yukon; UBC Press: Vancouver, BC, Canada, 2003; ISBN 978-0-7748-0984-9. [Google Scholar]
- Spaeder, J.J.; Feit, H.A. Co-management and Indigenous Communities: Barriers and Bridges to Decentralized Resource Management: Introduction. Anthropologica 2005, 47, 147–154. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Menzies, C.R.; Butler, C.F. Returning to Selective Fishing through Indigenous Fisheries Knowledge: The Example of K’moda, Gitxaala Territory. Am. Indian Q. 2007, 31, 441–464. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Spak, S. The Position of Indigenous Knowledge in Canadian Co-management Organizations. Anthrolopologica 2005, 47, 233–246. [Google Scholar]
- Ford, J.D.; Cameron, L.; Rubis, J.; Maillet, M.; Nakashima, D.; Willox, A.C.; Pearce, T. Including Indigenous Knowledge and Experience in IPCC Assessment Reports. Nat. Clim. Chang. 2016, 6, 349. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Andersen, K. Aboriginal Women, Water and Health: Reflections from Eleven First Nations, Inuit and Metis Grandmothers; Atlantic Centre of Excellence for Women’s Health; Prairie Women’s Health Centre of Excellence: Halifax, NS, Canada; Winnipeg, MB, Canada, 2010; ISBN 978-1-897250-32-7. [Google Scholar]
- McGregor, D. Indigenous Women, Water, Justice and Zaagidowin (love). Can. Woman Stud. 2013, 30, 71–78. [Google Scholar]
- Craft, A. Anishinaabe Nibi Inaakonigewin Report: Reflecting the Water Laws Research Gathering Conducted with Anishinaabe Elders; The University of Manitoba, the Manitoba Centre for Human Rights Research and the Public Interest Law Centre: Roseau River, MB, Canada, 2013. [Google Scholar]
- Gastaldo, D.; Magalhães, L.; Carrasco, C.; Davy, C. Body-Map Storytelling as Research: Methodological Considerations for Telling the Stories of Undocumented Workers through Body Mapping, 2012, ISBN 978-0-9810599-1-4. Available online: http://www.migrationhealth.ca/sites/default/files/Body-map_storytelling_as_reseach_HQ.pdf (accessed on 24 August 2017).
- Kovach, M. Conversational Method in Indigenous Research. First Peoples Child Fam. Rev. 2010, 5, 40–48. [Google Scholar]
- Bartlett, J.G.; Iwasaki, Y.; Gottlieb, B.; Hall, D.; Mannell, R. Framework for Aboriginal-guided decolonizing research involving Métis and First Nations persons with diabetes. Soc. Sci. Med. 2007, 65, 2371–2382. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
- Lavalley, G. Aboriginal Traditional Knowledge and Source Water Protection: First Nations’ View on Taking Care of the Water; Chiefs of Ontario: Toronto, ON, Canada, 2006. Available online: http://www.chiefs-of-ontario.org/sites/default/files/files/atk%20final%20report-r1.pdf (accessed on 28 August 2017).
- Chiblow, S.; Dorries, H. Aboriginal Traditional Knowledge and Source Water Protection Final Report; Chiefs of Ontario: Toronto, ON, Canada, 2007. Available online: http://www.turtleisland.org/resources/atk07.pdf (accessed on 28 August 2017).
- Chiefs of Ontario. Water Declaration of the Anishinaabek, Mushkegowuk and Onkwehonwe; Chiefs of Ontario: Toronto, ON, Canada, 2008. Available online: http://www.chiefs-of-ontario.org/sites/default/files/files/COO%20water%20declaration%20revised%20march%202010.pdf (accessed on 28 August 2017).
- Grande, S. Red Pedagogy: The Un-Methodology. In Handbook of Critical and Indigenous Methodologies; Denzin, N.K., Lincoln, L.S., Smith, L.T., Eds.; Sage: Los Angeles, CA, USA, 2008; pp. 233–254. ISBN 978-1-4129-1803-9. [Google Scholar]
- Cote-Meek, S. Colonized Classrooms: Racism, Trauma and Resistance in Post-Secondary Education; Fernwood Publishing: Halifax, NS, Canada, 2014; ISBN 978-1-55266-653-1. [Google Scholar]
- Gupta, J.; Pahl-Wostl, C. Global Water Governance in the Context of Global and Multilevel Governance: Its Need, Form, and Challenges. Ecol. Soc. 2013, 18, 53. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Pahl-Wostl, C.; Sendzimir, J.; Jeffrey, P.; Aerts, J.; Berkamp, G.; Cross, K. Managing Change Toward Adaptive Water Management Through Social Learning. Ecol. Soc. 2007, 12, 30. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
|Recommendations for Engaging in Indigenous Research|
|• Learn directly from Indigenous communities.|
|• Actively engage with Indigenous epistemologies through research questions, concepts, and practice.|
|• Follow OCAP (Ownership-Control–Access-Possession) research principles.|
|• Seek advice from community Elders and advisors, in addition to elected leaders.|
|• Involve youth in research and other project activities.|
|• Incorporate trainings that increase community capacity for research to be conducted within and at the direction of the community.|
|• Involve community and academic research partners in a collaborative and participatory process to balance goals for research and community benefit/action.|
|• Train and hire Indigenous peoples, especially youth scientists to carry out field work and assessment experiments.|
|• Ensure equal power sharing in research decision-making processes, with open engagement, full disclosure, and the community members acting as full partners.|
|• Acknowledge that all Indigenous communities and peoples are different (although some commonalities exist) so that research approaches can be customized accordingly.|
|• Practice the “two-eyed seeing” philosophy and recognize that two-eyed seeing can encompass more than just “western” and “Indigenous” knowledges.|
|• Apply a reciprocal learning approach, which means ensuring that both Indigenous community members and academic researchers learn from one another at a deep level through the research process.|
|• Acknowledge and account for the effects of colonization when considering potential solutions and recommendations.|
|• Restructure research laboratories based on Indigenous research philosophies and methodologies (e.g., lab methods practiced by Dr. Carrie Bourassa).|
|• Support efforts to include diverse Indigenous knowledges into existing law, environmental policy, and western science by enabling communities to “talk back to power” in a culturally appropriate manner.|
© 2018 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).