Uncommoning in the Andes

Climate change is a global ecological problem that seriously threatens children’s futures worldwide. Yet, the effects of climate change are drastically different for children in the Global North and South. Children in the South experience greater social, environmental and economic consequences than children in the North and have fewer opportunities to voice their concerns. Thus climate change is a significant social injustice. In the remote Andean community of Ingapirca, Ecuador, climate shifts are exhausting the land and profoundly changing Indigenous cultural and social relationships. Massive numbers of Cañari people have migrated to the North for employment, often leaving their children behind in the care of relatives. Although these children are key stakeholders in the sustainability of land and its ancestral knowledge, few opportunities exist for them to consider themselves as protagonists and knowledge creators in response to local and global ecological crises. To mitigate the effects of this injustice, the Uncommoning in the Andes project seeks to develop pedagogical methodologies that will strengthen Andean children’s agency in the struggle against climate change in their remote community
To achieve these objectives, this project addresses the following research questions:
1. How might educators and researchers co-create and collaborate in the struggle against destructive climate change in remote Andean communities in Ecuador?
2. What roles might community leaders and educators play in creating conditions to enhance child-world relation for collectively responding to climate change in Andean communities?
3. How can Andean children engage and reinvigorate their ancestral knowledge?