TKWB - Traditional Knowledge World Bank

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Message of HRH The Prince of Wales for the UNESCO International Conference on the Protection of Landscapes - Florence 19th-21st September 2012 to promote the International Traditional Knowledge Institute (ITKI) and Traditional Knowledge World Bank (TKWB)
(for mobile users: the youtube application must be downloaded from iTunes or google play stores)

Traditional Knowledge consists of practical (instrumental) and normative knowledge concerning the ecological, socio-economic and cultural environment. Traditional knowledge originates from people and is transmitted to people by recognizable and experienced actors. It is systemic (inter-sectorial and holistic), experimental (empirical and practical), handed down from generation to generation and culturally enhanced.

Today, traditional knowledge is in danger and its disappearance would cause not only the loss of its people’s capability to keep and pass on the cultural and natural heritage, but also the loss of an extraordinary source of knowledge and cultural diversity from which appropriate innovative sustainable solutions can be derived both today and in the future.

The Traditional Knowledge World Bank (TKWB) is a Wiki-like system set up as a platform for knowledge sharing and dissemination with full acknowledgement of the originators. This techniques inventory is based on an iconographic system (SITTI) and on a system of fiches available both on the TKWB and on Google Earth. TKWB gathers and protects Traditional Knowledge and promotes and certifies innovative practices based on the modern re-proposal of tradition as well.

In September 2012 the TKWB has been presented in the Conference “The international protection of Landscapes” held in Florence and promoted by UNESCO-ITKI.

TKWB inventory system: the Iconographic system SITTI

The TKWB inventory is based on an iconographic system (SITTI) that has been created to simplify the identification of the techniques and their use. The icons have been grouped into 7 thematic categories:


A - Silviculture, breeding, hunting and harvesting
B - Agriculture
C - Water management
D - Soil and environment protection
E - Settlements, architecture and movable handworks
F - Energy and resources management
G - Social organization, art and spirituality
                                               ------> Icons List


Types of TKWB forms

TKWB consists of a set of standardized forms that gather data, images and information on techniques, its applications in the world, on their degradation and possible innovative reinterpretations.

The forms are of four types:

Form 1 – General description of the technique - This is the form that explains the technique in general terms: each technique is associated with an icon of the SITTI iconographic system. 

>> See all "Type 1" forms actually in archive <<

Form 2 – Local application of the technique - This form explains the application's variants of a technique in a given place. ---> list forms 2

>> See all "Type 2" forms actually in archive <<

Form 3 – Success story - The form illustrates and describes a successful project in a given place where have been used or retrieved one or more traditional techniques. ---> list forms 3

>> See all "Type 3" forms actually in archive <<

Form 4 – Innovative technologies and solutions - This is the form that illustrates a new solution that incorporates the principles of a traditional technique, reinterpreted using new technologies. ---> list forms 4

>> See all "Type 4" forms actually in archive <<


How to consult TKWB

TKWB can be accessed both from this website and from Google Earth.

Please, watch our demo video
(for mobile users: the youtube application must be downloaded from iTunes or google play stores)

Accessing from the website
Accessing from the website, you can choose an icon which represents a technique. First you can consult the general definition (form 1). Then you can explore the local applications (form 2), success stories (form 3), and innovative techniques (form 4). Forms 2 and 3 are georeferenced and they are linked to Google Earth where you can see the technique on the landscape.

Accessing from Google Earth
Accessing from Google Earth, you can choose from all the georeferenced icons of the TKWB database. First you can consult the forms 2 (local applications) and 3 (success stories), then you can visualize the form 1 (general definition). At any moment, you can access the TKWB website.


See also

ITKI Founding Members