A Methodological Model for Exchanging Local and Scientific Climate Change Knowledge in Northeastern Siberia
This paper analyzes findings from “Knowledge Exchanges,” which engaged communities of Viliui Sakha, native horse and cattle agropastoralists of northeastern Siberia, Russia, with regional scientific specialists, a cultural anthropologist, and a permafrost scientist. Our process of knowledge exchange involved first gathering ethnographic data from affected communities, through focus groups, interviews, and surveys, and analyzing how people perceived, understood, and responded to local change. Next we documented the community results and compared them with regional climate change data. Lastly, we discussed these results during community knowledge exchange events, facilitating an increased understanding across knowledge systems and stakeholder groups. The knowledge exchange method documented in this article provides an adaptable model for integrating local and scientific knowledge systems that allows participants to reach understanding more quickly at global and local levels of how climate change is affecting places and peoples.