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Indigenous Peoples Histories and Archives

UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples - Article 31

1. Indigenous peoples have the right to maintain, control, protect and develop their cultural heritage, traditional knowledge and traditional  cultural  expressions,  as  well  as  the  manifestations  of  their sciences,  technologies  and  cultures,  including  human  and  genetic resources,  seeds,  medicines,  knowledge  of  the  properties  of  fauna and flora, oral traditions, literatures, designs, sports and traditional games and visual and performing arts. They also have the right to maintain,  control,  protect  and  develop  their  intellectual  property over  such  cultural  heritage,  traditional  knowledge,  and  traditional cultural expressions.

2. In conjunction with indigenous peoples, States shall take effective measures to recognize and protect the exercise of these rights.

From Article 31 of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP).

Image Source: Chiefs of Ontario Legislative Updates. (2017.) UNDRIP -- United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Retrieved from


What Is OCAP®?

The First Nations principles of OCAP® are a set of standards that establish how First Nations data should be collected, protected, used, or shared. They are the de facto standard for how to conduct research with First Nations. Standing for Ownership, Control, Access and Possession, OCAP® asserts that First Nations have control over data collection processes in their communities, and that they own and control how this information can be used. Please visit the First Nations Information Governance Centre's (FNIGC) website for more information.

How does OCAP® apply to researchers?

OCAP® respects that rights of First Nations communities to own, control, access, and possess information about their peoples is fundamentally tied to self-determination and to the preservation and development of their culture.

This is why anyone interested in conducting research with a First Nation should acquaint themselves with OCAP® before they begin. A good place to start would be The Fundamentals of OCAP® course, an online course developed by FNIGC in conjunction with Algonquin College that provides a comprehensive overview of the history of OCAP® and its applications in research and information governance today.

Protocols for Museums, Libraries & Archives


Libraries and Archives

Indigenous Foundations

Indigenous Foundations is an information resource on key topics relating to the histories, politics, and cultures of the Aboriginal peoples of Canada. This website was developed to support students in their studies, and to provide instructors, researchers and the broader public with a place to begin exploring topics that relate to Aboriginal peoples, cultures, and histories. Indigenous Foundations was developed by the First Nations Studies Program at the University of British Columbia, located on the traditional, ancestral, and unceded territory of the Musqueam people.

Research Principles in an Aboriginal Context