Indigenous Engineering for an Enduring Culture
For many millennia, Indigenous Australians have been engineering the landscape using sophisticated technological and philosophical knowledge systems in a deliberate response to changing social and environmental circumstances. These knowledge systems integrate profound understanding of country and bring together knowledge of the topography and geology of the landscape, its natural cycles and ecological systems, its hydrological systems and natural resources including fauna and flora. This enables people to manage resources sustainably and reliably, and testifies to a developed, contextualised knowledge system and to a society with agency and the capability to maintain and refine accumulated knowledge and material processes.
This book is a recognition and acknowledgement of the ingenuity of Indigenous engineering which is grounded in philosophical principles, values and practices that emphasise sustainability, reciprocity, respect, and diversity, and often presents a much-needed challenge to a Western engineering worldview.
Each chapter is written by a team of authors combining Indigenous knowledge skills and academic expertise, providing examples of collaboration at the intersection of Western and Indigenous engineering principles, sharing old and new knowledges and skills.
These varied approaches demonstrate ways to integrate Indigenous knowledges into the curricula for Australian engineering degrees, in line with the Australian Council of Engineering Deans’ Position Statement on Embedding Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander perspectives into the engineering curriculum first published in 2017.
Dr Cat Kutay works on Aboriginal engineering and technology projects, and with remote, rural and urban communities in transferring technology along the cultural interface. She currently teaches First Peoples’ knowledge in engineering and IT courses at Charles Darwin University, Australia.
Dr Elyssebeth Leigh is an educator and writer. She is passionate about helping Australia to understand its Indigenous past to build a sustainable future in its extraordinary landscapes.
Associate Professor Juliana Kaya Prpic is an educator and researcher whose work is exclusively focused on engaging with Aboriginal communities around Australia to recover Indigenous knowledges and culture. She also works to integrate Indigenous knowing, doing and being into the engineering curriculum.
Associate Professor Lyndon Ormond-Parker is a Researcher at the Australian National University and RMIT University, Australia. His research focuses on Indigenous communities in the areas of information technology, digital inclusion, cultural heritage, materials conservation and repatriation.
Cables - Technology and Engineering© Linda Payi Ford 2022. Payi is a Mak Mak Marranunggu woman. Her Country is Kurrindju, southwest of Darwin on the Finniss and Reynold’s Rivers, Northern Territory, Australia.
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