Skewes J. 2004. Conocimiento Científico y Conocimiento Local. Cinta moebio 19: 22-37


Scientific Knowledge and Local Knowledge

Juan Carlos Skewes Instituto de Ciencias Sociales. Universidad Austral de Chile.


It is analyzed the subject of the metabolization of the knowledge on the part of a rural community from its practical relation with a group of scientists, whose operational base constitutes a located laboratory of marine Biology in the locality of Mehuin in Chile. Product of this relation, and inadvertently, takes place a socialization of the knowledge about the local surroundings that, in the scene of an environmental conflict, serve as discursive platform to the villagers to vindicate its rights on the inhabited territories. Nevertheless, and simultaneously, the reciprocal positioning of these actors in the conflict takes -by local imposition- to the closing of the laboratory and, with it, the scientific work there accumulated for years is put in check. From this precise situation, the most critical aspects in the relation of a university with their surroundings are put in perspective, emphasizing those unexpected learning that give result the configuration of new local landscapes.

Key words: scientific knowledge and local knowledge, universities and regional surroundings, Mehuin, Chile, science and community, environmental conflict.

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Cinta de Moebio
Revista de EpistemologĂ­a de Ciencias Sociales
ISSN 0717-554X