01/12/2011 16:05 | Ester Ehnsmyr

Supradisciplinary approaches to feminist technoscience

Last week the very first Uppsala Supradisciplinary Feminist Technoscience Symposium was held at the Centre for Gender Research, focusing on supradisciplinary and indigenous methodologies.
- This symposium was in a way experimental, we didn’t really know what would happen when we started it. I’m surprised how well it turned out, says organizer May-Britt Öhman.

- Supradisciplinary methods is not only about expressing the inclusion of and collaboration between different academic disciplines, but it addresses a desire to step outside of academic knowledge production, recognizing that knowledge produced outside of academia should be equally considered or criticized as academic knowledge production, says organizer May-Britt Öhman from the Centre for Gender Research.

The three day long symposium involved 15 participants, among them researchers and non-academics from all over the world, as well as the president of the Swedish Sami Assembly. The symposium did not have any keynote speakers but the idea was to create a non-hierarchical forum where everyone would be equally important. The aim was to tie together issues of silence, voicing, technoscience, feminist embodiment and security/safety/risk, in relation to supradisciplinary and indigenous methodologies.

When it comes to indigenous knowledge making, a supradisciplinary approach means for example involving the Elders of indigenous people.

- It is important to work from within, that means for Sami people to do Sami research, and to involve Elders. They got the knowledge and can fill the gap, says one of the participants Frances Wyld from the David Unaipon College of Indigenous Education and Research, University of South Australia.

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