From Collective Consent to Consultation Platform: An Experience of Indigenous Research Ethics in Makota’ay


In 2015, six organisations, including the Makota’ay Community Development Association, Hualien Tribal College (HTC), and the project team of Dynamics of Eastern Taiwan in the New Century at National Dong Hwa University (NDHU) co-signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) at Makota’ay, a Pangcah2 tribal community on the east coast of Taiwan. The MoU establishes a community-focused interactive paradigm that aims towards collaboration in the promotion of indigenous education. By agreeing upon the MoU, the parties become partners in research. This moved research away from conventional paradigm where Indigenous peoples are subjects, and put Makota’ay’s input and aspirations towards constructing local knowledge at the centre of the multilateral relationship. One of the purposes of the MoU is to enact Article 21 of The Indigenous Peoples Basic Law, which mandates that research involving indigenous peoples should obtain the consent of the individual, and collective consent of the indigenous community.

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