Colonialism in Community-Based Monitoring: Knowledge Systems, Finance, and Power in Canada
Community-based monitoring (CBM) programs are increasingly popular models of environmental governance around the world. Accordingly, a handful of review papers have highlighted the various benefits, challenges, and governance models associated with their uptake. These reviews have been pragmatic in their recommendations and have supported CBM scholars and practitioners in implementing and understanding the various possible forms of CBM, but they have largely been silent on issues around the power dynamics implicit in CBM. Structured around explorations of the colonial politics of knowledge, funding, and finance, this article argues that dominant knowledge systems—specifically those that underpin Western, colonial governments and liberal, capitalist economies—shape the provisioning of funding for local programs and determine the significance of different types of community observations in shaping management decisions.