This Canadian practical guide is a tool to empower local communities to recognise and share their indigenous knowledge. It discusses the threats to IK (extinction of communities and IPR issues) and gives an extensive and practical model to preserve and protect IK.

Many communities are not aware they possess IK. They do not know how to identify and document it and there are few national or international laws to help them protect their knowledge.

This guide contains the outline of a step-by-step community development process. Three stages are recognised:

  • organising the community;
  • gathering information; and
  • developing a community-based action plan.
The authors recognise that each community is different and has different needs, so that actions will vary according to the local context, but hope that the guide will provoke discussion and stimulate action.