Integrating seasonal calendars into work plans
Integrating Indigenous ecological knowledge (IEK) into land management action is a priority for many Indigenous (and non-indigenous) natural and cultural heritage management groups. ESS has developed systems that are able to connect local IEK to its management implications and integrate it into work plans and on-ground action.
Operationalising Indigenous Seasonal Calendars
One approach for integrating IEK into land management pursued by ESS is through operationalising Indigenous Seasonal Calendars. Seasonal calendars hold layers of highly detailed IEK about the dynamic interactions between seasons, places, plants, animals, people, and land management practice. All this information is situated within local language and culture, which make them a powerful tool for education, cultural reproduction and language protection.
The richness of TEK embedded in seasonal calendars make them potentially powerful tools for managing country (including ecological monitoring). However this aspect of their utility is currently poorly understood and underutilised. By isolating the land management implications embedded in seasonal calendar knowledge and effectively organising these, seasonal calendars are able to guide when and how country should be cared for.