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Core Project (Anthropology)

The Potential Value of Indigenous Knowledge in Managing Hazards in Asia and Africa: The Anthropological Explorations into the Linkage of Micro-Macro Perspectives 2
Website: http://www.aa.tufs.ac.jp/kikanjinrui/

Term: 2016.4 –
Leader: Ryoko NISHII
Members: Hideo FUKAZAWA, Kaori KAWAI, Hirohide KURIHARA, Yutaka SAKUMA, Jun TAKASHIMA, Masahiko TOGAWA, Ikuya TOKORO, Yukako YOSHIDA

Summary

Globalization and modernization have generated hazards and risks across the globe that cannot be fully understood from a Western-centric viewpoint. Virtually all aspects of human lives are being endangered by various conflicts, environmental changes, population changes (e.g., the issue of marginal villages), economic crises, and natural disasters, which are uncontrollable by humans. As this situation escalates, people have started to believe that they have the power to control political, economic, social, as well as natural phenomena with reason-based modern technology in the interest of humans. Though this fallacy has been met with widespread opposition, effective solutions are yet to be found.
The mail objectives of this research project are investigate ‘indigenous knowledge,’ or the way of doing things unique to individual regions in Asia and Africa by using the theories and methods that have been established through our ‘explorations into the linkage of micro-macro perspectives’, the main theme of the Core Research Program of Anthropology, and by integrating the isolated knowledge of coping with hazards and risks into unified human knowledge. This knowledge can be verified in and adapted not only to Japan, but to anywhere in the world. The mission of the anthropologists committed to the Core Research Program is to pave the way to move indigenous knowledge from Asia and Africa beyond individual experiences and apply it in a wider range of contexts, by sharing the achievements of this research with people inside and outside of Japan, thereby contributing to resolving several issues in Asia and Africa.

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