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Abstract

Academics, corporations, and government agencies have begun to take greater interest in conducting Indigenous Knowledge (lK) research in response to environmental issues and failures of "development projects." Indigenous scholars and communities, however, are concerned about how these research projects may affect their communities and goals towards autonomy. In order to protect their IK and minimize the possibility for misrepresentation and/or misuse, some communities insist on equal control and participation in the entire research project. This article examines the debates surrounding the definition and use of lK. I then explore a research framework based on "relationships" as one possible model that may address indigenous concerns about control, authorship, ownership, and benefits. I discuss two variations of a relationship model: one based on "reciprocity,'" the other on "covenants." I conclude that a collaborative relationship research model complements indigenous expectations and conceptions of research and begins to address indigenous concerns.

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