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Oral histories: Informing natural resource management using perceptions of the past
Thurstan, R.H.; Buckley, S.M.; Pandolfi, J.M. (2016). Oral histories: Informing natural resource management using perceptions of the past, in: Schwerdtner Máñez, K et al. (Ed.) Perspectives on oceans past: A handbook on marine environmental history . pp. 155-173. https://hdl.handle.net/10.1007/978-94-017-7496-3_9
In: Schwerdtner Máñez, K; Poulsen, B. (Ed.) (2016). Perspectives on oceans past: A handbook on marine environmental history. Springer Science and Business Media: Dordrecht. ISBN 978-94-017-7495-6. xii, 211 pp. https://hdl.handle.net/10.1007/978-94-017-7496-3, more

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Author keywords
    Intergenerational change; Local ecological knowledge; Narratives; Qualitative data; Traditional ecological knowledge

Authors  Top 
  • Thurstan, R.H.
  • Buckley, S.M.
  • Pandolfi, J.M.

Abstract
    In a rapidly changing world, oral history – a recorded dialogue between an interviewer and interviewee – is becoming an increasingly valued method by which to describe past marine environments and to enhance our knowledge of ecological changes. Using case studies from the 1860s to the present day we demonstrate the important role that oral history plays in providing novel information for science and natural resource management: from testimonies of changes in fish size and abundance to descriptions of local environmental change. Whilst the interpretation and application of such research presents many challenges for resource management, the narratives that stem from oral history can often hold much greater meaning to the public or local stakeholders than scientific observations alone. Thus, oral history not only has an important role to play in filling knowledge gaps but also may help to generate greater acceptance of the magnitude of change being observed in marine environments.

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