There is a growing awareness on the importance of indigenous technical knowledge and the necessity of its integration into modern knowledge in order to address problems related to natural resource conservation. However, there is a lack of study that demonstrates clearly how the two types of knowledge systems could be successfully integrated together. This paper presents such a framework that has been developed through a participatory geographical information systems (GIS) approach with the Teso Community in Kenya. Data were collected using a variety of research instruments such as structured questionnaires, in-depth and face-to-face interviews, focussed group discussions, content analysis of literature, environmental check lists, and using the GIS techniques for assessing the status of the bio-physical environment. The process of developing such a framework comprises five key building blocks including stakeholder engagement, establishment of resources targeted for rehabilitation, establishment of community and scientific points of convergence and divergence, a decision on community and expert resolutions and the adoption of community-based project implementation, and monitoring and evaluation. The study recommends that the developed framework could be easily replicated with other rural communities that have similar bio-physical environmental conditions if found successful in sustainably managing natural resource management.
Key words: Indigenous technical knowledge, geographical information systems (GIS), natural resource management.
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