‘Stories for a Better Normal: Pandemic and Climate Change Pathways’ Features a USeP-Joint Research on the Davao Region IKSP

Various books and researches about Indigenous Knowledge Systems and Practices (IKPS) were featured – including a joint research undertaking of the University of Southeastern Philippines (USeP) – on the 54th episode of Deputy Speaker Loren Legarda’s virtual show “Stories for a Better Normal: Pandemic and Climate Change Pathways”, with the topic “Traditional Knowledge is Power!” on July 22, 2021, streamed live via the Climate Change Commission Ph Facebook page.

Ms. Joy R. Risonar, a resident faculty of the College of Arts and Sciences of the University, presented the research on “Disasters Preparedness and Climate Change: The Indigenous Knowledge of Selected IP Groups in the Davao Region” which explored the integral role of IKPS in the disaster preparedness and mitigation in specific tribal groups in Mindanao, particularly in the Davao Region.

The said research was a joint undertaking of USeP, Davao Oriental State College of Science, Technology (DOSCT), and the Office of Senator then Deputy Speaker Legarda in 2017.

Ms. Risonar specifically discussed how Indigenous People (IP) groups Davao Region practiced disaster preparedness and mitigation based on the ‘signs’ displayed by nature, examples of which are the out-of-place behaviors of animals and insects, the difference of river’s water level, the odd intensity of sunlight, even the sudden progress illness and unusual dream of elders’ and datus’, and many more.

Furthermore, Ms. Risonar underscored the need to understand the existing IKPS to better implement programs on Disaster Preparedness and Climate Change Resilience. Deputy Speaker Legarda agreed and added that preparedness and familiarity in ‘differing rhythm’ of nature is important.

The Project Leader of the said research is Gladys Florangel I. Ortiz with Study Leaders, namely: Sajed I. Ingilan, Mary Grace Z. Agbas, Lilibeth A. Cenojas, Joy R. Risonar, and Lilibeth S. Galvez from DOSCST. Marvin Lagmay served as Layout Editor, and Sheila Grace B. Europa as Editor. Dr. Rodney C. Jubilado from University of Hawaii served as External Reviewer.

Ms. Risonar was joined with Dr. Serafin Ngohayon from Ifugao State University; Ms. Anna Razel Ramirez from University of the Philippines – Visayas; and Dr. Pablo Crespo, President of University of Antique – all representing the participating State Universities and Colleges (SUCs) in the documentation of Indigenous Knowledge Systems and Practices (IKPS) in the country.

Other books that feature IKPS of the country were also discussed, namely: the “Ifugao Indigenous Knowledge Systems and Practices,” and “From the Seas to the Mountain – Panay – Guimaras Traditional Knowledge Systems.”

The aim of the said show was to virtually raise awareness on the Indigenous Knowledge Systems and Practices (IKPS) on sustainable development and environment conservation, and promote the documentation and safeguarding of traditional knowledge systems; as IKPS are developed over centuries and are passed from generation to generation.

‘Stories for a Better Normal: Pandemic and Climate Pathways’ is a weekly online discussion series that that tackles different topics on how individuals, households, and communities can adopt healthier, and more environment and climate-friendly lifestyles in relevance to the COVID-19 pandemic and climate emergency.

The show is organized in partnership between the Office of Deputy Speaker Legarda and the Climate Change Commission (CCC), with support from the Department of Education (DepEd), Philippine Information Agency (PIA), Institute for Climate and Sustainable Cities (ICSC), The Climate Reality Project-Philippines and Mother Earth Foundation.

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