Grounding Indigenous Rights

What is Local Contexts?

Local Contexts is a global initiative that supports Indigenous communities with tools that can reassert cultural authority in heritage collections and data. By focusing on Indigenous Cultural and Intellectual Property and Indigenous Data Sovereignty, Local Contexts helps Indigenous communities repatriate knowledge and gain control over how data is collected, managed, displayed, accessed, and used in the future.

Local Contexts recognizes the inherent sovereignty that Indigenous communities have over knowledge and data that comes from their lands, territories, and waters.

Local Contexts Labels and Notices were created to ground intellectual and cultural property rights in cultural heritage, data, and genetic resources within digital environments.

The Labels and Notices are generated and managed using the Local Contexts Hub.

Indigenous communities

reinforce rights by applying TK and BC Labels

Traditional Knowledge (TK) and Biocultural (BC) Labels establish Indigenous cultural authority and governance over Indigenous data and collections by adding provenance information and contextual metadata (including community names), protocols, and permissions for access, use, and circulation.

Institutions and researchers

disclose interests by placing Notices

Black square with the letters BC in the middle in white.

Notices are tools for institutions, repositories, and researchers to support ethical use and reinforce relationships with Indigenous communities. They also work to educate the public around Indigenous rights and interests in historical and future collections and data.

What is the Local Contexts Hub?

The Local Contexts Hub is a web portal that enables the customization of Labels by Indigenous communities and the generation of Notices by institutions and researchers. Labels and Notices can be applied to Local Contexts Projects created within the Hub depending on the account type.

Community

Community accounts can customize TK and BC Labels to display local and traditional protocols. The Labels are used as digital signifiers to explain how Indigenous history and culture is accessed and used going forward. These Labels can be attached by community accounts to Local Contexts Projects.

Institution

Institution accounts can apply Notices to Local Contexts Projects. Local Contexts Projects document information about a particular item, collection, sample, etc. Applying Notices allows institutions to engage acknowledge, and make visible Indigenous interests in collections, information, and data.

Researcher

Researcher accounts are specifically for independent researchers. Researcher accounts are very similar to institution accounts but only have one member, the account creator. Researchers can apply Notices to Local Contexts Projects that document particular data or research you may have conducted.

Hub Users

51

Communities

58

Institutions

194

Researchers

34

Countries

News and Updates

Upcoming Events

Local Contexts Hub Demonstration Session

November 21, 2024
, 23:00 UTC
“Hub Demo Session.” Text on decorative blue-green background.

Do you have questions about Local Contexts or the Local Contexts Hub? Curious about how you can use the Traditional Knowledge and Biocultural Labels and Notices to support Indigenous data sovereignty and cultural authority? Sign-up for a group informational or Hub demonstration session with the Local Contexts team!

ATALM 2024

November 12, 2024 - November 14, 2024
 
Event poster. “Sovereign Futures: Weaving tradition and innovation. 2024 international conference of Indigenous archives, libraries, and museums. Palm Springs, California. November 12-14, 2024.” Decorative background, artwork of colorful landscape with prominent plants, palm trees, and mountains.

Some of the Local Contexts team will be presenting and attending the 2024 International Conference of Indigenous Archives, Libraries, and Museums (ATALM 2024) in Palm Springs, California, USA. The preliminary schedule includes multiple opportunities to hear about Local Contexts and the work of our Council, including: The early bird registration rate is open until August …

Local Contexts Information Session

November 7, 2024
, 23:00 UTC
“Information Session.” Text on decorative blue-green background.

Do you have questions about Local Contexts or the Local Contexts Hub? Curious about how you can use the Traditional Knowledge and Biocultural Labels and Notices to support Indigenous data sovereignty and cultural authority? Sign-up for a group informational or Hub demonstration session with the Local Contexts team!

Local Contexts Hub Demonstration Session

October 23, 2024
, 18:00 UTC
“Hub Demo Session.” Text on decorative blue-green background.

Do you have questions about Local Contexts or the Local Contexts Hub? Curious about how you can use the Traditional Knowledge and Biocultural Labels and Notices to support Indigenous data sovereignty and cultural authority? Sign-up for a group informational or Hub demonstration session with the Local Contexts team!