The Center for World Indigenous Studies is deeply engaged in regional and global initiatives to advance the dialogue between indigenous nations and UN member states. We deem this an essential process to ensure that what will be a long and drawn out debate over implementing the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples will create maximum benefits for the worlds constitutional and customary indigenous governments. While the scheduled United Nations World Conference on Indigenous Peoples in September 2014 will not be definitive, it will never the less figure as one of several launching pads for the renewed global debate over the rights of indigenous nations. The political future of indigenous nations and their constitutional or customary governments depends on a health dialogue directly between member United Nations states and indigenous governments.
For those people who wish to argue whether indigenous governments have a role to play in the global dialogue (believing as they do that non-governmental organizations and individual activists are “more representative” of indigenous peoples) I suggest that there is plenty of room for all players from the Fourth World. The more voices, the more we will see changes in global economic policies, trade, climate change, and among many other things the application of traditional knowledge systems to the problems confronting indigenous peoples and their governments.
Join us in the debate. CWIS will prepare to facilitate more discussion in the long term dialogue that awaits indigenous nations, their governments and their peoples