Weaving strands of knowledge. Learning about environmental change in the Bhutan Himalayas


  • Sameer Honwad University of Buffalo
  • Andrew D. Coppens University of New Hampshire
  • Greg DeFrancis MIT Museum
  • Marcos Stafne Montshire Montshire Museum of Science
  • Shivaraj Bhattarai Royal Thimphu College




Climate change is a complex phenomenon, so much so that even those with expert knowledge on the scientific data struggle to understand the impacts of climate change on their everyday lives. Contradictions across systems of knowledge make clear that climate change is not just a problem of scientific understanding but is also simultaneously a problem of global coordination as well as a sociopolitical problem of connecting domains of knowledge that are seldom valued equitably. The project described in this paper is a prototype effort to put knowledge from community members in two culturally distinct rural areas of the world at equal footing with scientific knowledge. The overarching project aim was to design partnership-based inquiry into environmental and climate change that coordinated the aforementioned three facets of climate change (a) scientific understanding, (b) cross-cultural coordination among globally dispersed communities, and (c) sociopolitical equity in bringing nondominant perspectives to the table.

Author Biographies

Sameer Honwad , University of Buffalo

Assistant Professor

Andrew D. Coppens, University of New Hampshire

Assistant Professor


Greg DeFrancis, MIT Museum

Director of Engagement

Shivaraj Bhattarai, Royal Thimphu College