Both speakers agreed on the fact that TEK provides unique historical, and frequently offers ecosystem linkages that science can not. However, for being based on repetitive observation, trial and error, TEK might have a limited ability to detect and deal with rapid changes, such as those related to the impacts of climate change. Therefore, the need to bridge the gap between local knowledge and science becomes urgent to find sustainable solutions for ecosystem management and adaptation to climate change. If, on the one hand, the incorporation of TEK into scientific tools (such as GIS) can provide an useful platform to document and give value to TEK in contemporary contexts, on the other hand the development of easy-to-use scientific tools for communities can enhance people’s engagement in the conservation activities, increasing their self-resilience, specially in those countries where government capacity is limited.
Joseph Salima from the village of Naro, presented the 3D model to the workshop participants on the behalf of the village representatives: “The model is now done. You can see the blue lines These are rivers; dark blue lines indicate streams”, he explained while finger-pointing to the features. “Some cross the main road because during flooding the water runs over the road. The yellow line indicates the main road. Within the model there are two mountains covered by dense forest where our ancestors used to practice sacrifices. These are the places were our ancestors lived before the Christianity came. They lived there (upland) because of hunting. The brown lines are the tracks people used to follow during hunting. (…) White areas are flood areas.
The brown colour signify coconut plantations, that are along the coast. The area outlined by the red yarn is our Marine Protected Area (MPA)”. When questioned on the reason why the locally managed protected area is located in front of the village he replied: “Our place is here so we have the full sight on the protected area. We could not establish it elsewhere because people from other villages could have had something to say. We want to protect this area because the population in the village is growing and we are experiencing shortage of resources” he specified. Joseph continued by identifying other landmarks and areas, including home gardens, coconut plantations, households, the school, springs¸, swamps and mangrove areas.“ The area painted dark green with light green points indicates the area were logging took place. The logging concession has come to an end and the forest is recovering. We hunt wild pigs there” he added.
P3D Model gave villagers the opportunity to visualise and further their understand their land and resources “we discovered there are slopes we never saw before that could not be used for agriculture; now with this model we can see them”.
On day 6 the organisers have planned to transport the model to Naro and officially hand it over to the local community. The community itself will decide to what uses it will put it in addition to participatory spatial planning. Considering the fact that the area is prone to natural disasters such as flooding, it is likely that it will be used to also to strategise on climate change adaptation.
Villagers stressed the need to further involve elders in the identification of other landmarks and features that they might do not know. “This model is maybe 90% correct; it is quite clear but we needed somebody as my father, or somebody from the village that used to hunt wild pigs everyday for a long time” Joseph highlighted. “If elders were involved in populating the model it is likely that up to 50 layers could have been identified so far” commented Dave de Vera. Village representatives also expressed their intention to extend the model involving other parts of the marine and forest conservation areas.
Back to the plenary session, Nate Peterson GIS geek working for TNC, explained how to capture data via digital photography and he provided a practical demonstration of data extraction and geo-referencing, using a high resolution image of the completed 3D Model. He also cross-checked peoples’ data against official datasets and could demonstrate how accurate and precisely geo-located some features entered by community members were.
The experience of the Chivoko community in using P3DM and participatory video (PV) was shared by Mr Kiplin, chief of the village. “It is a privilege of be here today on behalf of my community”, he said. “Comparing with other communities, my community was the first in to use P3DM. Two of the main issues we are facing here in Solomon Islands are logging and mining. Mining is recent while logging has been practiced since a long time (…). From a village perspective, making a PV has been a useful experience since it gave us the opportunity to portray a real picture of the logging activities undertaken in our area. In making a video everybody can see the reality of the community” he pointed out.
At the end of the day, Giacomo Rambaldi drove the attention on the purpose of the workshop from CTA’s perspective. The event, in fact, is framed within a broader series of interventions supported by different agencies. All interventions deal with climate change adaptation and building resilience at community levels. CTA focus is on supporting grassroots in making their spatial knowledge more authoritative and in having their voice heard in climate change adaptation policy development processes. He recalled that the next P3DM activity supported by CTA will be held in Trinidad and Tobago during the months of August 2012. He anticipated that in 2014, CTA will lead the organisation of an international conference with focus on the Small Islands Development States (SIDS) with the objective of sharing lessons learned in SIDS when adopting PGIS/P3DM practices and herewith raise further awareness among policy makers on the need of inclusiveness. He also reported on the interest expressed by some organizations including the National Geographic and Museon in documenting P3DM processes.
The day closed with the delivery of the certificates to Naro representatives.