Guiding Principles

We strive to establish true partnerships rooted in trust, respect for tribal political and resource sovereignty, and a commitment to integrating Indigenous worldviews and knowledge with Western science and analysis. From our collective experience, we found that the process of collaborative community-based research in environmental science and policy is just as important as the products. 


Through our work thus far, we have identified the following key principles for transforming relationships and research within collaborative tribal-university partnerships: 

  1. Honor Indigenous sovereignty and rights
  2. Address past and present harms as an essential part of building accountable relationships
  3. Be on the path together with researchers and Indigenous partners
  4. Recognize, respect, and value Indigenous participation and intellectual labor
  5. Encourage the robust exchange of ideas for stronger collaborative research
  6. Recognize that documents formalizing a relationship are not the whole relationship
  7. Make a plan for identifying and protecting sensitive Indigenous data
  8. Be prepared to navigate institutional obstacles
  9. Seek, support, and collaborate with diverse students
  10. Actively listen and be open to different ways of engaging with the world

To learn more about our guiding principles and collaborative process, we invite you to read our paper: “Tranforming research and relationships through collaborative Tribal-University partnerships on Manoomin (wild rice)” — 

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