Research projects 12

This was an education workshop bringing women from all the SADC countries together to innovate food products from indigenous foods. Some of the food innovations were then piloted further and scaled.

Team

Professor Kati Lindroos, UEF; Professor David Katerere Tshwane University of Technology

Access to schooling and higher education are considered as primary means to empower marginalized groups and enhance sustainable development in the Global South. In Ecuador the intercultural bilingual education programme that affirmed the fundamental importance of integrating diverse local languages knowledges and pedagogical practices in education was established already in and later amended based on the community-centric ecologically-balanced and culturally-sensitive philosophy of sumakkawsay (buenvivir). However the programme is still only partially applied and thus education typically follows homogenized standards and fails to include specific cultural realities.

Team

Johanna Hohenthal

Improving our understanding of human-environment relations, and particularly of human motivations, rationale and management regimes, is paramount to the success of any biodiversity conservation initiative involving local communities. By comparing approaches, challenges and successes across case study sites, this research aims to identify those contextual settings, socio-cultural traits, incentives, and practical tools that best foster optimum long-term integration of biodiversity conservation and local wellbeing.

Team

Anita Heim; Attila Paksi; Aina Brias; Marketta Vuola; Mohammad Mozumder

Indigenous people who are historical creators of knowledge about food, are among the most impoverished, food insecure people of the contemporary world. This is often due to regulations over the usage of natural resources and very rapid changes in social settings, climatic patterns and cultural practices. This has significantly transformed the diets of indigenous people’s worldwide, non-exemption of the Khwe San indigenous people of Namibia. Today, not only are less food available to the Khwe, but also in reduced nutritional quality. The widely available processed foods and Food Aid deliveries have created dependencies and undermined traditional food systems and health.

Team

Prof. Juha Helenius, Dr. Aili Pyhälä

The primary objective of the PhD study is to understand and analyse the role that Traditional Ecological Knowledge plays in relation to the multiple domains of well-being among the youth of an indigenous, former hunter-gatherer tribe.

Team

Assistant Professor Pirjo Virtanen, Dr Aili Pyhälä, Professor Barry Gills

The project between University of La Molina and University of Turku, Finland aims to improve the higher education on Food Sciences and to strengthen the research, development and innovation environment concerning sustainable utilization of indigenous food crops in Peru.

Team

Jaakko Korpela, Jukka-Pekka Suomela

The HEI-ICI project (between Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú and University of Helsinki) aims at developing a national systematic and validated quality model for teacher's in-service training in Higher Education Institutions in Peru. The second aim of the project is to enhance the network of universities in Peru (RPU) in educational development and in providing in-service training for teachers and pedagogical teaching companions (acompañantes pedagógicos) to finally empower educators of all levels with a special attention to the children among indigenous people.

Team

Dr Jari Lavonen, Dr Heidi Krzywacki, MA Päivi Virtanen, Dr Arja Haapakorpi, Dr Juan Carlos Llorente, MA Patricia Escobar Cáceres, Dr Carmen Diaz Bazo

The main aims of the project are the following: a) to create a new research collectivity on indigenous peoples that would be organized from the Faculty of Humanities, Helsinki University. b) to understand better current grass root challenges of indigenous peoples c) to identify new contacts at the Helsinki University and internationally d) to create new study modules. e) to integrate creativity and epistemology of indigenous people in the methods and contents of the research and teaching activities.

Team

  • Head of research Martti Pärssinen
  • Language n/a

The "United in Diversity: Monumental Landscapes, Regionality, and Cultural Dynamism in Pre-Columbian Western Amazonia" (2011–2015) is a multidisciplinary project focusing on cultural dynamics of the prehistoric indigenous populations in the southwestern Amazon. The geometric earthworks connected by road systems, identified by Brazilian and Finnish researchers in the Upper Purus River Basin, have contributed to formulate a new perspective of Amazonian civilizations. The primary objectives of our project are to reconstruct the cultural, economic, ethnic, and demographic processes involved in the occurrence of the geometric earthwork tradition in the Brazilian states of Acre and Amazonas. The project is sponsored by the Academy of Finland.

Team

Martti Pärssinen, Sanna Saunaluoma, Pirjo Kristiina Virtanen, Denise Schaan, Alceu Ranzi, Antonia Barbosa, Sidney da Silva Facundes + foreign contributors

  • Head of research Pirjo Virtanen
  • Language n/a

The project examines indigenous and Afro-American peoples’ ways to create new cognitive models for producing power. People from these backgrounds have been active in designing new education systems, engaging in politics, and creating new religious intersubjectivity in Latin America. We stress a ‘not-yet’ consciousness, modes of attention to the fact that something has still to happen or become. The proposed project focuses on agency constructions in different social, cultural, religious, and political contexts and the ideas of imagined (home)places and spaces based on indigenousness, ethnicity, and religion as they may affect people’s future transformation. We examine agencies including both human and non-human subjects. The global influences, technology, new contacts, new knowledge, and state policies are important factors in creative processes the actors can use for their agency construction.

Team

Pirjo Kristiina Virtanen, Eleonora Riviello, Anna Vohlonen