Confluencenter’s Innovation Farm Grantees Showcase Indigenous Rights, Food Justice, and Trans Studies

2019 innovation farm congratulations picture
Workshops bringing together scholars in Tucson and in Australia to explore legal protections of Indigenous land, knowledge, and property rights; a wellness curriculum and symposium linking food traditions and spirituality with holistic health and wellness issues in the African American community; and a symposium on rethinking sex and gender in Trans Studies comprise the three diverse faculty/community groups being funded by the Confluencenter’s Innovation Farm program.
Started in early 2014, the Innovation Farm program was created in partnership with the Office of the Vice President for Research to provide critical seed money to interdisciplinary working groups with the potential to achieve greater impact.
“The Innovation Farm grants were awarded to projects that make lasting contributions to scholarly and artistic life at the UA, with this round focusing on the topic of inequality,” explains Confluencenter Director Javier Duran. “To that end, Confluencenter is funding ‘Toward a Vision of Community Wellness: Reclaiming Agency, Self-Care, and Connection to Place,’ ‘Indigenous Inequalities: Intersections of property, place, and rights in the United States and Australia,’ and ‘Trans +/- Sex: Rethinking Sex/Gender in Trans Studies.’”
Spanning Law and Anthropology, the interdisciplinary team behind Indigenous Inequalities: Intersections of property, place, and rights in the United States and Australia is led by Diane Austin of Anthropology. The project fosters scholarly exchange between researchers at the University of Arizona and at the University of Queensland, Australia, along with Indigenous community partners and applied practitioners from both countries.
According to the proposal for Indigenous Inequalities, “This research collaboration will explore a central question: how are intellectual and legal institutional frameworks for recognizing and protecting Indigenous land, knowledge, and property rights implicated in solutions to Indigenous inequality?” The project will facilitate two different workshops, one in Tucson and the other in Brisbane, Australia, along with webinars and a project wiki. The Innovation Farm award will facilitate student workers, honoraria, and web design and web conferencing for this ongoing project.
Toward a Vision Of Community Wellness: Reclaiming Agency, Self-Care, And Connection To Place, builds on an ongoing collaboration between Dunbar Coalition, Inc., El Rio Health Centers, the Coalition for African American Health and Wellbeing, and the UA Center for Regional Food Studies. The Innovation Farm-funded project will expand “workshops, classes, and hands-on experiences focused on addressing the root causes of health inequalities through the revitalization of food and herbal-based treatments, health maintenance, and spiritual rituals.”