Original Research

African indigenous knowledge and research

Frances E. Owusu-Ansah, Gubela Mji
African Journal of Disability | Vol 2, No 1 | a30 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ajod.v2i1.30 | © 2013 Frances E. Owusu-Ansah, Gubela Mji | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 13 April 2012 | Published: 16 January 2013

About the author(s)

Frances E. Owusu-Ansah, Department of Behavioural Sciences, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Ghana
Gubela Mji, Centre for Rehabilitation Studies, University of Stellenbosch, South Africa


This paper seeks to heighten awareness about the need to include indigenous knowledge in the design and implementation of research, particularly disability research, in Africa. It affirms the suitability of the Afrocentric paradigm in African research and argues the necessity for an emancipatory and participatory type of research which values and includes indigenous knowledge and peoples. In the predominantly Western-oriented academic circles and investigations, the African voice is either sidelined or suppressed because indigenous knowledge and methods are often ignored or not taken seriously. This paper posits that to be meaningful and empowering, African-based research must, of necessity, include African thought and ideas from inception through completion to the implementation of policies arising from the research. In this way the work is both empowering and meaningful for context-specific lasting impact.


research design;participation; implementation; indigenous knowledge;


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