Mitchell Center to host talk on braiding Indigenous knowledge and science March 25

The Senator George J. Mitchell Center for Sustainability Solutions at the University of Maine will host a talk titled “Woven Wisdoms: The new Center for Braiding Indigenous Knowledge and Science” on Monday, March 25 at 3 p.m. 

Indigenous Knowledge offers valuable insights into climate change as it encompasses multigenerational understandings of local ecosystems and human engagement with changing environments. This knowledge can reveal patterns of environmental change and new ways of living and coping with a changing planet. By bringing Indigenous knowledge and western science together to address contemporary climate change issues, people can foster new strategies for developing effective and holistic responses to the climate crisis. This presentation introduces the new Center for Braiding Indigenous Knowledge and Science (CBIKS), a National Science Foundation-funded center aimed at creating ethical pathways to bring holistic thinking to contemporary climate change issues. Bonnie Newsom, associate professor of anthropology at UMaine, will present an overview of the goals, values and objectives of CBIKS and highlight the university’s role as the center’s Northeast hub.

Newsom (Penobscot) is an Indigenous archaeologist interested in the pre-contact lifeways of Maine’s Native peoples. She seeks to humanize past peoples by exploring the concepts of identity, social boundaries and human agency. Newsom’s professional history includes serving as the tribal historic preservation officer for the Penobscot Nation and as assistant director for UMaine’s Wabanaki Center. She has a strong public service record which includes serving as chair of the Repatriation Review Committee for the National Museum of Natural History and as a member of the Maine Indian Tribal-State Commission. 

All talks in the Mitchell Center’s Sustainability Talks series are free and are offered both remotely via Zoom and in person at 107 Norman Smith Hall on the UMaine campus in Orono. 

Registration is required to attend remotely; to register and receive connection information, see the event webpage.

To request a reasonable accommodation, contact Ruth Hallsworth, 207.581.3196;