What: The 2016 ITKI UNESCO City of Gastronomy Conference: Food and Water in Arid Lands: Dialogues across Contemporary and Traditional Knowledge
When: All day Friday, November 4, 2016 and Saturday, November 5 until 5:00pm
Where: University of Arizona, Student Union Memorial Center, 1303 E University Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85719
The two-day conference will include an extensive list of expert panelists to bring insight on different issues. They will be discussing their own experiences with water management, water scarcity and their work toward just food systems. The panelists are broken down into three sessions which all will be talking about Traditional Knowledge as it overlaps into other topics such as water scarcity, science, and the food systems. A list of these panelists and information on the sessions can be found here.
One of the biggest topics that will be discussed is the importance of Indigenous Knowledge, also known as local knowledge. The Food and Water Conference website describes Traditional Knowledge as knowledge that is, “passed from generation to generation, usually by word of mouth and cultural rituals.” According to the website, Local Knowledge is important because it has been the basis for activities that sustain societies all over the world such as agriculture and food preparation. The definition of Traditional Knowledge is one of the reasons this conference is important. It is a way for people to learn, plan, and act toward creating a more sustainable environment. Conference point person Mika Galilee Belfer said, “I think the solutions we generate together will hold so much potential for action.”
Other issues that will be addressed include climate justice, urban agriculture, climate change, sustainable models, and much more. In addition to the conference, attendees are welcome to attend other excursions throughout the two days that will highlight the region’s cultural and food heritage. There will be a dinner on Friday and reception with James Beard Award winning Chef Janos Wilder. There will also be a Sunday brunch and programming at the Desert Museum.
“Our incredibly diverse list of registered attendees suggests that Tucson is the right place, and this is the right time, for a conference like this.” –Mika Galilee-Belfer