STATEMENT FROM CULTURAL INTERNAL REVIEW BOARD OF THE EASTERN BAND OF CHEROKEE INDIANS
January 18, 2012
Things to Consider
before proposing a research project on the Qualla Boundary:
Before initiating a research project on the Qualla Boundary, please be mindful that it needs to be performed with an attitude of respect toward the community. It must come from a sense of integrity due to the community and its members regarding their lives and history. Not all inquiry is unwelcomed, only that which disregards the following guidelines.
The EBCI Cultural Research Committee does not accept any research projects dealing with traditional medicine or religious practices. Such information is not deemed appropriate for dissemination outside of the tribe.
Acquisition of traditional knowledge is not considered a right, but a privilege. An attitude of entitlement will not benefit a researcher and may appear to constitute exploitation.
Are you providing a desired service? The Cherokee concept of duyuktai is about balance. Any research project requires the taking of informant’s time, knowledge, and experience. It is imperative that the researcher’s project is of benefit not only to the informant, but to the tribe as a whole.
Few tribal members are impressed by titles or degrees. Tribal members will judge a researcher on their character, and especially their motives for conducting research.
The success of any research conducted with tribal members is dependant on the relationships built with people within the community. Please keep in mind that some tribal members are not receptive to any form of research or researchers.
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