Water and Indigenous People
Thematic Session organized by UNESCO-CSI (Coastal Regions and Small Islands) on 20 March 2000 during the Second World Water Forum (The Hague, Netherlands 17-22 March 2000).
Indigenous peoples have sophisticated knowledge and practices relating to water, its use and management. In this session Aboriginal (Australia), Cree (Canada), Fijian (Fiji), Hopi (USA), Ibaloi-Igorot (Philippines), Karen, Thai (Thailand) and San (Namibia/Botswana)case studies were presented and discussed.
Participants stressed that, having examined the Forum documents, it is clear that indigenous/tribal peoples, their unique systems of values, knowledge and practices have been overlooked in the world water vision process. It was concluded that there is an urgent need to correct the imbalance of mainstream-thinking by actively integrating indigenous women and men in the subsequent phases starting with the framework for action (cf. Actions).