Growing Together: Weaving Indigenous Wisdom and Western Science for a Sustainable Future (E/SI)

April 30, 2024 15:45 - 16:45 Macleod Hall CView map

Sweetgrass holds a profound significance for the Mi’kmaq as well as other Indigenous communities across Turtle Island. Valuable ecologically and culturally, sweetgrass is woven into ceremonies and offers solace to mental health. Issues related to land access, habitat degradation, and loss of traditional knowledge have created concerns. The Nova Scotia Community College (NSCC), The Confederacy of Mainland Mi’kmaq (CMM), and Unama’ki Institute of Natural Resources (UINR) are working together with Mi’kmaq communities to learn more about this plant. Presenters will share how they are exploring the art of growing sweetgrass sustainably within communities to make it more accessible for the next seven generations. The project has also provided another kind of growth: along our journey we have learned and adopted new ways of knowing. Initially, the project’s goals revolved around exploring methods of sweetgrass irrigation and fertilization in a purely Western science model. Over time, we learned from community members that the best way to ensure the plant’s survival is to bring it into the communities, by planting it directly in garden beds. We are now approaching our work with Etuaptmumk (Two-Eyed Seeing) and together are finding greater success with understanding the plant’s needs through germination, propagation, and growing conditions. The goal is to share this learning with Mi’kmaq Knowledge Keepers and Earth Keepers to continue growing across communities and into the future.

Stream: Transforming Leadership and Governance

Geared towards governance professionals, including board members and CEOs, this stream will focus on how institutional leaders are embracing transformational leadership and governance to effect change within their institutions and contribute to the socio-economic well-being of their communities.


Denise DiGiosia
Senior Advisor Mi'kmaw Indigenous Initiatives - Human Rights, Equity and Inclusion | Nova Scotia Community College (NSCC)
Jeffrey Taylor
Associate Vice President of Applied Research, Innovation, and International | Nova Scotia Community College

Code of Conduct & Duty of Care

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