NSF INCLUDES: Collaborative Research: Integrating Indigenous and Western Knowledge to Transform Learning and Discovery in the Geosciences
Finding inclusive approaches to broaden the participation of underrepresented communities in the sciences is the focus of this project. The team will create pathways for Native American students from the development of new partnerships between tribal communities and STEM institutions that promote the participation and inclusion of Native American scientists in the geosciences. Each partner brings a successful program, based on good practices from the research literature in improving outcomes for underrepresented students and scientists. Together, the researchers will create scientific collaborations that support a pipeline for Native American students from middle school through to graduate school and beyond. In addition, the project will work on building welcoming workplace climates for indigenous researchers within ?traditional Western? organizations. The approach will integrate indigenous and Western knowledge in research collaborations to create more creative, innovative, and culturally relevant science research programs.
This project, Integrating Indigenous and Western Knowledge to Transform Learning and Discovery in the Geosciences, uses the principles of collective impact to create new partnerships between tribal communities and STEM institutions that promote the participation and inclusion of Native American scientists in the geosciences. The project collaborators will more strongly integrate indigenous and Western knowledge into collectively-developed research projects. The project partners the Rising Voices: Collaborative Science for Climate Solutions (Rising Voices) and member tribal colleges and communities with Haskell Indian Nations University, the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), the University of Arizona?s Biosphere 2, and National Center for Atmospheric Research?s Significant Opportunities in Atmospheric Research and Science (SOARS) internship and Global Learning and Observation to Benefit the Environment (GLOBE) citizen science programs. Together, they will build research partnerships between Native American and traditional Western scientists, provide professional development for NCAR and Biosphere 2 scientists on how to engage appropriately with tribal communities, and provide pathways for NA students from middle school through college, to grad school and beyond. The project will connect community-based citizen science programs for middle- and high school youth with undergraduate programs at Haskell Indian Nations University and University of Arizona, and with summer research internship experiences for undergraduates and graduate students that address topics of interest across tribal communities, tribal college faculty, traditional science institutions, and community-based citizen science. This project also enhances the research capacity of all partners, and brings together diverse perspectives, which have been shown to lead to greater innovation, creativity, and higher impact research. The project has the potential to provide a tried and tested model for building similar partnerships at other institutions, including content and methods for professional development for mainstream scientists, ways to create more welcoming spaces for Native American students and scientists, promising practices for improving how research in the geosciences carried out, and an increase in the representation of Native American students and scientists in that vital research enterprise.
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