Traditional Knowledge, Resilience, and Food Landscape:
International Ecology of the Aboriginal
Yih-ren Lin

In fidelity to the core values outlined by the International Partnership for the Satoyama Initiative (IPSI) that promotes self-sufficient management of agricultural and natural resources within a local community, this project seeks to explore how this initiative is practiced by the Indigenous people in Taiwan. In principle, a well-established social system needs to rely upon the sufficiency of natural resources that are regulated by and operated within different ecosystems. In addition, the establishment of cultural landscapes in human communities will influence local ecologies to different extents. Ideally, Satoyama area, a place that constitutes of local residence, different natural resources use and healthy food production, will positively enhance the welfare of the human being and their living environment. Putting this agenda against the experiences of Taiwanese Indigenous cultures, we hope to retrieve the value of ecological health that is richly nourished by the often neglected spiritual recourses based on the Indigenous traditional knowledge from a holistic viewpoint. We also concern ourselves with resilience as a pivotal concept to confront and adapt the climate change, and to retain sustainability in the production of healthy food. In those regards, Indigenous ecological farmers are thus our active agents.

This project examines issues surrounding practices of the traditional knowledge, resilience, and foodscape. First, we argue that biodiversity conservation is an effective way to safeguard cultural multiplicities and vice versa. Therefore, we support agricultures related to ecologically sound landscape and food production system in diverse Indigenous people’s areas that can portray resilient social-cultural contents domestically and internationally. Second, this project advocates developments of Indigenous organizations to reinforce autonomous management of traditional ecology and agricultural recourses under the impact of global climate change. Third, this project promotes tribal self-sufficient economy as fulfilling entrepreneurships. It may be achieved by ways of exploring particular Indigenous features and branding of tribal cultures, and implementing production and marketing mechanism of the economy chain. Lastly, this project seeks to establish a network interweaving knowledge gathered locally from Indigenous tribes in Taiwan and global ecological discourses through international cooperation. The aim of this project is to model on the spirit and experience of global Satoyama Initiative to establish the examples of autonomous agriculture and natural resources in the regions of Taiwanese Indigenous tribes, and to share and build allegiance in the global context.