Human Ecology

, Volume 37, Issue 2, pp 147–159

Changing Ethnobotanical Knowledge of the Roviana People, Solomon Islands: Quantitative Approaches to its Correlation with Modernization


    • Asian Studies Network (ASNET), Division for International RelationsThe University of Tokyo

DOI: 10.1007/s10745-009-9223-8

Cite this article as:
Furusawa, T. Hum Ecol (2009) 37: 147. doi:10.1007/s10745-009-9223-8


This study examines the acculturation of ethnobotanical knowledge in association with modernization by analyzing similarities and differences within a language group, the Roviana people of the Solomon Islands. Cultural consensus analysis and evaluation of either village-level or individual-level modernity were performed for seven villages. In one modernized and one less modernized village, detailed socioeconomic data at the individual level were collected. Intervillage variation of knowledge correlated with modernity only when the villages were referenced to the less modernized villages, while there was no correlation when the most modernized village was used as the base knowledge. An informant’s knowledge in the less modernized village was affected by socioeconomic factors, but this was not observed in the modernized village. From these results, I suggest that modern knowledge is easily integrated into the ethnobotanical knowledge system but is not directly related to the loss of indigenous botanical knowledge.


Ethnobotany Modernity score Acculturation New Georgia Melanesia

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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009