The Inuit Knowledge Bank: Conceptualizing a Collective Knowledge Repository for Nunavut - Brendan Griebel

9:30 AM, Thursday 3 Oct 2019 (30 minutes)
DoubleTree par Hilton Montréal - Soprano A (on Level 4)
Over the last decade, Pitquhirnikkut Ilihautiniq has been creating digital platforms to archive and communicate various forms of knowledge documented through its Inuinnait culture and language programs. In 2018, the organization began development of a territorial-scale collections management tool focused on the digital return of Inuit cultural collections. Known as the Inuit Knowledge Bank, this system is designed to help Nunavummiut connect with Inuit-focused object and archives collections, and empower them towards their re-interpretation. As a primary goal, the Knowledge Bank seeks to create a centralized and ever-growing repository of Inuit collections and knowledge, using a framework that facilitates Inuit contributions, ownership and control over their digital management. The database is an attempt to address two significant issues of knowledge access in Nunavut: 1) the inability of many Nunavut museums, archives, and organizations to publically share and distribute the collections they own, and 2) the difficulty many Nunavummiut experience in gaining access to Inuit collections and knowledge held by Canadian institutions outside the territory, and in other countries around the world. This presentation will focus on the challenges inherent to building a digital repository that sources its content from multiple collections, with greatly differing protocols regarding critical issues such as digital licensing, virtual repatriation and responsibility to source communities. It will also explore key issues in designing a platform that allows for the application of Inuit protocols for accessing and sharing knowledge, while providing space for multiple forms of Inuit identity and use.
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