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Professor to Address Crab Fishermen’s Ecological Knowledge

Dr. D. Robert Cooley, assistant professor of anthropology/environmental science at Pennsylvania College of Technology, will present a program entitled “Applying Ecological Anthropology: Studying the Ecological Knowledge of Commercial Blue Crab Fishermen” on Tuesday, March 2, at the College Library.

The program, which is the third in a series of faculty forums to be presented at the library, will be offered from 5 to 6 p.m. The event is free and open to the public.

According to Dr. Cooley, the environmental knowledge fishermen accumulate from their work can be described as traditional ecological knowledge, or “TEK.” Field research conducted among Georgia’s crab fishermen demonstrates their TEK is structured by a system of cultural models relating many environmental elements within the blue crab fishery.

Though crabbers devalue their TEK with disclaimers such as, “I’m not a scientist,” investigation reveals their knowledge is complex, structured and predictive and holds the potential for collaboration among scientists and fishermen on fishery-management issues, according to Dr. Cooley.

The library is located in the Learning Resources Center on Penn College’s main campus. For more information, call (570) 327-4523, or visit on the Web.

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