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Local knowledge in development (geography)

Smith, Thomas Aneurin ORCID: 2011. Local knowledge in development (geography). Geography Compass 5 (8) , pp. 595-609. 10.1111/j.1749-8198.2011.00443.x

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The use of local knowledge in and for development is a relatively recent phenomenon, entering the realm of development theory and practice from the mid-1970s, yet it has become a key part of the rhetoric and practice of development agencies and academic research. The conceptual and historical background to local knowledge in development, including its roots of ‘Western’ engagement with ‘other’ or ‘indigenous’ knowledges, is key to understanding their more contemporary application in development practice. As local knowledge has entered the development orthodoxy, so a more critical approach has emerged, with particularly important contributions from Geographers, as to the use, application, and conceptual understanding of how knowledges are interpreted and adopted within development. This critique has highlighted the dynamic, political, and spatial nature of such knowledge, and problematises the notion that they are fundamentally ‘good’ for local development. For Geographers, and those working in development studies, there remain important questions about local knowledge, including how such knowledges are constituted by relationships and networks that go beyond the local, how such knowledges are ‘learnt’ and (re)produced in time and space, and how the knowledges of still marginalised actors in local communities can be taken account of.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Geography and Planning (GEOPL)
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > G Geography (General)
H Social Sciences > HT Communities. Classes. Races
Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell
ISSN: 1749-8198
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 30 March 2016
Last Modified: 06 Nov 2023 18:55

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