Cultural Studies of Science Education

, Volume 3, Issue 3, pp 663–702

Indigenous knowledge in the science curriculum: avoiding neo-colonialism


DOI: 10.1007/s11422-007-9087-4

Cite this article as:
Ryan, A. Cult Stud of Sci Educ (2008) 3: 663. doi:10.1007/s11422-007-9087-4


Science education in Papua New Guinea has been influenced by neo-colonial practices that have significantly contributed to the silencing of the Papua New Guinea voice. This silencing has led to the production of science curriculum documents that are irrelevant to the students for whom they are written. To avoid being caught up in neo-colonial practices, Western science educators ought to consider the notion of cultural mediators. This position, I argue, infers an obligation to take responsibility for their actions and to consider postcolonial discourses as a way of understanding the relationships and dialogue between different ways of knowing.


Papua New GuineaNeocolonialismScience educationCurriculum

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of EducationMonash UniversityChurchillAustralia