Canadian municipalities established by settlers are structured in a way that separates residents from their environment. We may have nice gardens, but our fences limit shared interactions with the ecosystem – this, we are told, is the responsibility of the government. Top-down management systems, including the outdated rational comprehensive planning models still used by Metro Vancouver municipalities, silence what remains of resident connections to the environment. This study explores the relationships of my Port Moody neighbours with their environment. Using the talk story, a type of talking circle method, my neighbours combined their different perspectives into solutions that were well-informed from personal experience and incorporated all of their concerns. Residents hold valuable knowledge that should contribute to the management of their own environment, and talking circles can provide the tools to re-structure management in a way that involves them on the community level.
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Thesis advisor: Dobuzinskis, Laurent
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