Pîjashig! Kwe kwe! Tunngahugit! She:kon! Aanii! Boozhoo! Tansi! Taanishe! Hello! Bienvenue!
Greetings in multiple languages of the First Nations, Métis and Inuit peoples honour the fact that these events are being organized by members of academic institutions located across Canada, with participants from other parts of Turtle Island (North America) and the world beyond. We wish to acknowledge the Indigenous peoples who are our hosts, and our ongoing responsibilities to all forms of life in these lands and waters.
The importance of the land acknowledgement* is amplified by our roles as educators in these territories, where we have the opportunity to help develop awareness of Indigenous cultures, to engage with Indigenous leaders and communities in how we teach, and to discuss how to bring Indigenous knowledge into teaching, including Indigenous ideas of governance. Through this we can learn how to provide critical alternatives to the exploitation of the lands, waters and all life forms, which has so long profited settlers at the expense of the lives, health and culture of Indigenous peoples. We recognize that the project of decolonizing education is all the more important following the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada’s Calls to Action (2015) which identified specific roles for educational institutions, and education in every aspect of society.
We therefore hope that Just Transitions: Heritage Education for Climate Adaptation will help to address some of the much needed capacity development for decolonizing education in heritage and climate adaptation, including by ensuring that the knowledge we are seeking to define and develop is informed by Indigenous knowledge, helping to reframe the Western science that has defined and contributed to the causes of climate change.
*Specific land acknowledgements will also be made for each event by lead institutions. See for instance the Land Acknowledgement for the ICOMOS University Forum. To identify the Indigenous territory where you are located, see Native-Land.ca.