Current Directions in Water Scarcity Research - Chapter 1 - Introduction: The need for Indigenous knowledge-based water and drought policy in a changing world

Elsevier, Current Directions in Water Scarcity Research, Volume 4, 2022, Pages 1-11
Miguel Sioui

In this introductory chapter, the editor of the volume introduces some key considerations related to the Indigenous environmental stewardship and governance in an era of unprecedented environmental change. The emergence of global environmental challenges like climate change and its many regional manifestations has presented new threats to Indigenous land and water resources the world over. Despite these new challenges, which compound the impacts of colonial legacies on traditional stewardship practices and governance frameworks, Indigenous Peoples continue to demonstrate formidable resilience and an unwavering “responsibility-based” approach to water and drought management. In many instances, Indigenous groups from Peru to New Zealand continue to lead a spiritual resistance to dominant environmental and resource management structures that stem from narrow economistic imperatives. This chapter sets the stage for the volume by first providing a brief overview of some key considerations regarding the resurgence of Indigenous knowledge (IK)-based water and drought management, in the face of intensifying climate-related changes. In the second part of the chapter, the author provides an overview of the format of the remainder of the volume, along with a chapter-by-chapter breakdown of the various case studies contained therein.