Featured past event:
2015 Annual ANU Reconciliation Lecture

Each year, a renowned Australian individual is invited to speak publicly on the topic of reconciliation. In 2015, the lecture was given by The Honourable Mr Kevin Rudd.

» read more

<strong>Featured past event:</strong> <br />2015 Annual ANU Reconciliation Lecture

Featured past event:
‘Repatriation stories from a far away land’

A public lecture by NCIS Adjunct Fellow Dr C. Timothy McKeown, a legal anthropologist whose research focuses on the development and implementation of repatriation policy.

» read more

<strong>Featured past event:</strong> <br />‘Repatriation stories from a far away land’

Featured past event:
Graduate research retreat

NCIS hosts an annual workshop for Higher Degree by Research (HDR) scholars who are Indigenous to Australia, or are undertaking research into indigenous topics.

» read more

<strong>Featured past event:</strong><br />Graduate research retreat

Featured past event:
Justice Reinvestment Forum

2 August 2012: NCIS co-hosted a 1-day discussion forum with academic and government leaders, about issues related to Justice Reinvestment.

» read more

<strong>Featured past event:</strong><br />Justice Reinvestment Forum

Featured past event:
Common Roots: Common Futures conference

20 – 22 February 2012: NCIS co-hosted a 3-day conference and workshop at the University of Arizona, focusing on national and international Indigenous governance and development.

» read more

<strong>Featured past event:</strong><br />Common Roots: Common Futures conference

Events

13
Dec
2016

Monthly research hour: ‘Out of place, into order: Place-making regimes, itinerant cultures and the nineteenth-century making of the modern world’

NCIS visitor, Dr Martin Müller, will be presenting the final NCIS research hour for the year. In this short talk, it is Martin’ aim to provide a rudimentary sketch of the overarching framework in which his work here in Australia and New Zealand is located. It forms part of a larger research project entitled Territoriality, Governmentality , and Colonial Rule: A Global History of the War on Non-Sedentary Peoples and Itinerant Cultures during the Long 19th Century. Taking the cue from Emily S. Rosenberg’s phrase on how nineteenth-century empires and nation-states both deterritorialised and reterritorialised geographic space, this project uses the alienating discourses on – and violent actions conducted against – these itinerary peoples and their non-sedentary cultures as a thematic prism through which it examines what these practices can tell us about the underlying social and epistemic structures that, in particular, were expressed though the ideas of territoriality and governmentality. It is in the context of this research that Martin is interested in studying how the New Zealand and Australian cases fitted with – or differed from – the general dynamics characterising imperial and nation state attitudes towards ‘indigenous’ peoples in different geopolitical settings on various, overlapping global scales. Martin’s focus is in this context, especially on aspects of colonial policing and social control; in particular, he is interested in how the so-called “standards of civilisation” blurred the lines between policing, ‘punitive expeditions’, and military actions.

Time & venue: 4-5pm, Level 3 meeting room, John Yencken Building, 45 Sullivans Creek Road, ANU campus.

Enquiries & RSVP: NCIS Research Associate, Dr Siobhan McDonnell, on siobhan.mcdonnell@anu.edu.au or 6125 0092.

22
Nov
2016

Quarterly Essay 64 – The Australian Dream: Blood, history and belonging

Stan Grant in conversation with Professor Mick Dodson AM

In a landmark essay, Stan Grant – Indigenous Affairs editor at the ABC and Chair of Indigenous Affairs at Charles Sturt University – writes Indigenous people back into the economic and multicultural history of Australia. This is the fascinating story of how fringe-dwellers fought, not just to survive, but to prosper. Their legacy is the extraordinary flowering of Indigenous success – cultural, sporting, intellectual and social – that we see today. Yet this flourishing co-exists with the boys of Don Dale Youth Detention Centre and the many other youths like them who live in the shadows of the nation. Grant examines how such Australians have been denied the possibilities of life, and argues eloquently that history is not destiny; that culture is not static. In doing so, he makes the case for a more capacious Australian Dream.

“The idea that I am Australian hits me with a thud. It is a blinding self-realisation that collides with the comfortable notion of who I am. To be honest, for an Indigenous person, it can feel like a betrayal, somehow; at the very least, a capitulation. We are so used to telling ourselves that Australia is a white country: am I now white? The reality is more ambiguous… To borrow from Franz Kafka, identity is a cage in search of a bird.” Stan Grant, The Australian Dream.

Stan Grant won the 2015 Walkley Award for coverage of Indigenous Affairs and is the author of The Tears of Strangers and Talking to My Country. Stan will be joined in conversation by Professor Mick Dodson AM, Director of the National Centre for Indigenous Studies at ANU.

Quarterly Essay is Australia's leading journal of politics, culture and debate.

Time & venue: 6-7pm, ANU School of Music Auditorium, 100 Childers Street, Acton ACT 2601. Pre-book signings at 5.15pm and after the event. Books will be on sale thanks to the University Co-Op bookshop.

Enquiries & RSVP: Bookings can be made through ANU Events. Please book early as our last event with Stan Grant attracted over 1,000 people.

15
Nov
2016

Corinne Walsh – ‘Falling on deaf ears?: Listening to the Indigenous voices regarding ear disease (otitis media) and hearing loss’

PhD thesis proposal review

In accordance with University rules, Higher Degree by Research (HDR) scholars must complete a Thesis Proposal Review (TPR) before the end of the first year of their candidature. The TPR forms a significant component of the scholar’s first annual report and generally includes the subject of their proposed research, the methodology to be employed, an analysis of the relevant literature on this topic, a description of how the scholar’s proposed research will make an original contribution to the study of this subject, and – where relevant – an outline of the fieldwork required for the scholar's research program.

Abstract

Middle-ear disease (‘otitis media’) and consequent hearing loss is one of the most significant health issues facing Indigenous people. As many as 95% of Indigenous Australians in some regions have ‘sick ears’, prompting the World Health Organisation to pronounce it a public health crisis requiring urgent attention.

While mainstream biomedicine has made some headway in alleviating infections and improving peoples’ hearing, rates of ear/hearing problems among Indigenous Australians continue to escalate. Research on Indigenous otitis media has focused primarily on identification and treatment, and very little on prevention. My PhD starts from the premise that ear and hearing issues ought to be addressed at their source, and – to do this – close consideration must be given to local circumstances, beliefs, explanations and experiences of the condition.

Using an in-depth, ethnographic approach, I will analyse a range of perspectives and experiences surrounding otitis media and hearing impairment – from high-level policy to lived accounts of Indigenous people themselves. Extensive fieldwork in the community of Yarrabah is planned, and the methods used will be largely qualitative and locally-determined.

The ultimate aim is to grasp how current approaches to ear and hearing problems may better resonate with Indigenous epistemologies and conditions, so that more effective (early) intervention and prevention initiatives can be designed.

Speaker biography

Corinne is currently a PhD Scholar at the National Centre for Indigenous Studies (NCIS) at The Australian National University, where she has also just completed 3.5 years working as a Research Officer. Corinne has a BA in Anthropology and Sociology from Macquarie University, and has worked in a number of policy, project and research roles at the Federal Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs (FaHCSIA) as well as at NSW Health. Corinne has recently completed a Master of Applied Anthropology and Participatory Development (MAAPD) at ANU. Corinne is passionate about health and wellbeing – specifically, in understanding the pressing issue of ear and hearing problems amongst Indigenous people.

» read more about Corinne and her PhD project

Time & venue: 2 – 4pm, Level 3 meeting room, John Yencken Building, 45 Sullivans Creek Road, ANU campus.

Enquiries & RSVP: Please contact the HDR Program Coordinator, Dr Diane Smith on diane.smith@anu.edu.au or +61 2 6125 0160.

9
Nov
2016

The 2016 Annual ANU Reconciliation Lecture

Each year, a renowned Australian is invited to speak publicly on the topic of reconciliation. The 2016 lecture will be given by The Honourable Jody Wilson-Raybould PC, QC, MP, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, MP for Vancouver Granville, lawyer, advocate, and former Regional Chief of the British Columbia Assembly of First Nations.

Time & venue: 5.30 – 6.30pm followed by refreshments until 8.30pm; HC Coombs Lecture Theatre, 8A Fellows Road, ANU campus, Acton, ACT.

» campus map

Enquiries & RSVP: The event is free and open to the public. Registration is essential: please visit RSVP Annual ANU Reconciliation Lecture or contact the NCIS Centre Administrator, Ms Tamai Heaton, on ncis@anu.edu.au or 6125 6708.

» read more

2
Nov
2016

Annie Te One – ‘Local Māori politics’

PhD thesis oral presentation

The NCIS oral presentation is similar to the mid-term review that is required in some other ANU departments. The oral presentation will normally be held by Higher Degree by Research (HDR) scholars after two years of full-time study, or part-time equivalent. The purpose of the oral presentation is to provide a significant milestone that HDR scholars can work towards, and to satisfy their panel of satisfactory progress.

Abstract

This presentation will provide an overview of Annie Te One's PhD research so far. Working within her own iwi (tribe), who are based in Wellington, New Zealand, she has asked ‘What characterises Māori political participation in an urban environment?’ The first section of her research has argued that local government needs to be understood in the colonial context within which it was built, and that the introduction of British-informed local government in Wellington demonstrated a change in local politics which instituted Māori exclusion as both representatives and as partners. She discusses how these precedents still exist today, and by drawing on examples from throughout the country, she argues that there is now an accepted narrative and assumptions about how Māori will act politically. This understanding exists within a deficit understanding of Māori political representation and partnership with local government. The second part of Annie's PhD research has sought to understand Māori local politics that is less dependent on local government for confirmation. She argues that the relationships that exist between iwi and Māori suggest an alternative source and confirmation of Māori political self-determination that is independent of the state.

» read more about Annie and her PhD project

Time & venue: 9.30 – 11.30am, Level 3 meeting room, John Yencken Building, 45 Sullivans Creek Road, ANU campus.

Enquiries & RSVP: Please contact the HDR Program Coordinator, Dr Diane Smith on diane.smith@anu.edu.au or +61 2 6125 0160.

31
Oct
2016

Why do land reform? Challenging urban land grabbing by political elites

The remains of a baby’s cot after bulldozers have been through an urban settlement.

NCIS Research Associate, Dr Siobhan McDonnell, will be presenting this seminar as part of the State, Society & Governance in Melanesia (SSGM) seminar series. Siobhan is a Research Fellow at SSGM As well as holding a position at the NCIS. Siobhan currently co-convenes and lectures in the SSGM course titled ‘Resource Conflict in Asia and the Pacific’. She was recently awarded a PhD in Legal Anthropology titled ‘My Land My Life: Power, Property and Identity in Land Transformations in Vanuatu’. In 2013, Siobhan was the principal drafter of Constitutional amendments and wide-ranging land reforms. She is currently the Legal Advisor to the Minister for Lands Ralph Regenvanu and has recently advised the Vanuatu Government on Constitutional reform matters.

Abstract

Across the international donor community comes the catch-phrase ‘land is a sensitive issue’ as if this is reason enough not to engage in the land space. While it is true that land reform is complex and sensitive and must be locally driven, donors must also recognise that it has the potential to deliver substantial benefits by challenging the operation of the ‘shadow state’. Melanesian states are situated in shadowy webs of patronage−global and local−such that political alliances with investors representing transnational institutions inform the exercise of state power. Shadow state networks often dominate leasing of urban land by political elites. Across Melanesia development, planning and environmental regulation is regularly subverted through the alliances of investors with politicians.

This seminar considers acts of urban land grabbing by former Vanuatu Minister for Lands Steven Kalsakau. In 2012, Minister Kalsakau issued at least 190 leases over state land to: government officers, personal business and political associates and close family members. In this paper I will chart the process by which the leases were issued. Finally, returning to the question of land reform, this paper will conclude by looking at the 2014 land reform package designed to address the influence of the shadow state over urban and customary land in Vanuatu.

Time & venue: 3 – 4.30pm, Lecture Theatre 2, Hedley Bull Centre (building 130), corner of Garran Road and Liversidge Street, ANU campus.

Enquiries & RSVP: please email the State, Society & Governance in Melanesia Program on ssgm@anu.edu.au.

23
Oct
2016

NCIS writing retreat

NCIS staff and Higher Degree Research (HDR) scholars participate in an annual week-long writing retreat at the Kioloa Coastal Campus of ANU. The week is loosely structured with a primary focus on writing, and with opportunities for discussion, sorting out knotty writing problems, and enhancing writing skills.

Time & venue: Sunday 23 – Friday 28 October 2016; Kioloa Coastal Campus located on the NSW south coast.

Enquiries & RSVP: Please email the NCIS HDR Program, ncis.hdr.program@anu.edu.au.

19-21
Oct
2016

Graduate research retreat

NCIS is proud to host its seventh retreat for Higher Degree Research (HDR) scholars undertaking research into Indigenous topics. The retreat is an opportunity for Indigenous HDR scholars and scholars researching in Indigenous studies to engage in intellectual discussion, networking and information sharing.

Time & venue: Wednesday 19 – Friday 21 October 2016; Canberry & Springbank Rooms, Level 1, J.G Crawford School (Building 132), ANU campus.

Enquiries & RSVP: Please email the NCIS HDR Program or phone 02 6125 0160. The event is free and places are limited.

» read more

13
Oct
2016

The Great Green Debate: Is urbanisation sustainable?

Is urbanisation sustainable? The Great Green Debate returns for the tenth year in a row to debate one of the most important challenges of the decade.

This year, the Great Green Debate casts a critical lens on the meaning and effects of urbanisation. What does urbanisation mean for Australia’s already urbanised cities? What kinds of effects will urbanisation have on health, the environment, culture and wellbeing? Can our cities support larger populations? Fundamentally, is urbanisation sustainable?

NCIS Research Associate, Dr Siobhan McDonnell, will join a panel of speakers who will debate these questions. The event is hosted by the ANU Sustainability Learning Community and ANU Global Challenges Learning Community – a student-led, university-supported initiative designed to inspire discovery and encourage curiosity in ANU students and the wider University community.

Time & venue: 6 – 8pm, Law Lecture Theatre, 7 Fellows Road, ANU campus.

Enquiries & RSVP: The event is free and is open to the public. Registration is essential: please visit RSVP The Great Green Debate.

09
Aug
2016

Richard Maning – ‘Discourse on indigeneity in Australian courts.’

PhD thesis proposal review

In accordance with University rules, Higher Degree by Research (HDR) scholars must complete a thesis proposal review before the end of the first year of their candidature. The TPR forms a significant component of the scholar's first annual report and generally includes the subject of their proposed research, the methodology to be employed, an analysis of the relevant literature on this topic, a description of how the scholar's proposed research will make an original contribution to the study of this subject, and – where relevant – an outline of the fieldwork required for the scholar's research program.

Abstract

Richard’s PhD research topic is an in-depth examination and analysis of Australian court cases dealing with issues relating to Aboriginal sovereignty, culture and identity. The cases that he has selected for analysis are: (1) Coe v Commonwealth [1979] HCA 68 and Coe v Commonwealth [1993] HCA 42 on Aboriginal sovereignty; (2) Chapman v Luminis (No 5) [2001] FCA 1106 on Aboriginal culture; and (3) Eatock v Bolt [2011] on Aboriginal identity. Richard will be employing Critical Discourse Analysis methodology in combination with Critical Indigenous Theory in his examination of the selected cases. Richard’s research aims are: (1) to identity the discourses and ideologies embedded in the texts of the selected court judgments; (2) to analyse how those discourses speak to each other, influence each other, marginalise each other and are incommensurable to each other; and (3) to identify and highlight the Aboriginal discourse of resistance which attempts, in the court arena, to fight dominance and actively subvert the dominant paradigm.

» read more about Richard's research project

Time & venue: 9am – 10am, Level 3 meeting room, John Yencken Building, 45 Sullivans Creek Road, ANU campus.

Enquiries & RSVP: Please contact the NCIS HDR Program or phone 02 6125 8371. The event is free and open to the public.

19
Jul
2016

Gary Toone – ‘ Aboriginal cultural heritage on farmlands: The perceptions of farmers of the Tatiara district of South Australia’

PhD pre-submission seminar

In accordance with University rules, Higher Degree by Research (HDR) scholars must complete a pre-submission seminar three to six months prior to the intended submission of their dissertation. The seminar generally includes the research project's major objectives, content and results, and the work's conclusions. Scholars are expected to demonstrate their independent command of the material, their ability to communicate clearly and concisely the analysis of the material and findings, and their ability to respond appropriately to constructive comment and criticism.

Abstract

In modern heritage philosophy, the idea of cultural heritage as a cultural process has gained acceptance: leaving stakeholders in the management of Aboriginal heritage in intensively settled and farmed regions of Australia facing particular legal and ethical challenges. This seminar is a presentation of an exploration of the efficacy of the management of Aboriginal Cultural Resources (ACR) and Aboriginal Cultural Heritage (ACH) on farms through an Interpretive Phenomenological Analysis (IPA) of the perceptions of fifteen farming landowners from the Tatiara region of South Australia.

Participating farmers have uncertain understandings of cultural heritage ideas, narrow sense and sensibility of Aboriginal cultures and heritage, limited competence and capacity to respond to ACR and ACH, and circumspection about engaging Aboriginal issues. The conclusion is that successful cross-cultural Aboriginal heritage management, allowing Aboriginal people to engage with ‘unknown’ ACR and establish ACH, will rest on four cornerstones: clarity; sensitivity; capability; and participation.

» read more about Gary's research project

Time & venue: 1pm – 3pm, Level 3 meeting room, John Yencken Building, 45 Sullivans Creek Road, ANU campus.

Enquiries & RSVP: Please contact the NCIS HDR Program or phone 02 6125 8371. The event is free and open to the public.

08
Apr
2016

Sarah Down – ‘Mining developments and the operationalisation of free, prior, informed consent in New Zealand: Limitations of the consultation paradigm’

PhD thesis oral presentation

The NCIS oral presentation is similar to the mid-term review that is required in some other ANU departments. The oral presentation will normally be held by Higher Degree by Research (HDR) scholars after two years of full-time study, or part-time equivalent. The purpose of the oral presentation is to provide a significant milestone that HDR scholars can work towards, and to satisfy their panel of satisfactory progress.

Abstract

In New Zealand, plans for the further exploitation of minerals have been coupled with major changes to relevant legislation. Māori, as the Indigenous peoples of New Zealand, have a fundamental interest in whether, and if so how, mining developments occur on their traditional lands. Using the international Indigenous right of free, prior, informed consent (FPIC), both as a concept and a framework of analysis, this thesis explores the extent to which tribes in New Zealand have control over decisions regarding mineral developments. Sarah's research to date illustrates that there are significant complexities regarding what FPIC entails in practice, and a lack of critical analysis about the concepts used to discuss Māori participation in mining developments. Drawing on case studies, reports and other primary materials, this thesis hypothesises that there are significant deficiencies with the current framework which, while providing a number of specific rights for Māori, focuses on consultation. Case studies will illustrate that a number of tribes view mineral developments as a continuing issue and that consultation as the vehicle for Indigenous engagement over mining developments has significant limitations.

» read more about Sarah's research project

Time & venue: 2pm – 4pm, Level 3 meeting room, John Yencken Building, 45 Sullivans Creek Road, ANU campus.

Enquiries & RSVP: Please contact the NCIS HDR Program or phone 02 6125 8371. The event is free and open to the public.

18
Feb
2016

Ed Wensing & ndash; ‘Land justice for Indigenous Australians: ‘Two different timelines, two different cultures and two different laws’. Can the two systems of land ownership and tenure co-exist with each other?’

PhD thesis oral presentation

The NCIS oral presentation is similar to the mid-term review that is required in some other ANU departments. The oral presentation will normally be held by Higher Degree by Research (HDR) scholars after two years of full-time study, or part-time equivalent. The purpose of the oral presentation is to provide a significant milestone that HDR scholars can work towards, and to satisfy their panel of satisfactory progress.

Abstract

There are two distinct systems of law and custom in Australia: that of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and the other brought to Australia by the British colonisers in 1788. Despite the numerous Aboriginal land rights schemes established between the 1960s and the 1980s and the High Court of Australia’s landmark decision in Mabo (No. 2) in 1922 [and the enactment of the Native Title Act 1993 by the Commonwealth effective from 1 January 1994], Australia still does not have a system of implicit recognition of the prior and continuing ownership of land and waters by its Indigenous Peoples (customary owners) according to their traditional law and custom.

Ed's argument is that the two systems of land ownership and tenure can co-exist alongside each other respectfully and justly, and Ed's research is examining the conditions for commensurability.

This presentation will outline Ed's hypothesis, the research question and a set of inter-related research questions, the research methods, the results of the research undertaken to date, the outstanding research yet to be undertaken, the proposed structure and content of Ed's thesis and a timetable for completion.

The quote ‘Two different timelines, two different cultures and two different laws’ is from Mrs Margaret Iselin, Quandamooka Elder, at the signing of the Native Title Process Agreement between Redland Shire Council and the Quandamooka Land Council Aboriginal Corporation, North Stradbroke Island (Minjerribah) in August 1997. Ed was present at this public event, representing the Australian Local Government Association, and noted this statement at the time with the consent of the author.

» read more about Ed's research project

Time & venue: 9.30am – 11am, Level 3 meeting room, John Yencken Building, 45 Sullivans Creek Road, ANU campus.

Enquiries & RSVP: Please contact the NCIS HDR Program or phone 02 6125 8371. The event is free and open to the public.

Semester 1
2016

Shut up and Write; and read and discuss

Students and Early Career Researchers in Indigenous Studies are affiliated with a number of Centres and Schools across campus (at CAEPR, NCIS and beyond). This group aims to get everybody together on a regular basis and will:

  • Provide a space for HDR students and ECR involved in Indigenous studies to get to know each other; this aspect of the group may be of particular significance for the HDR scholars at ANU who are not enrolled or associated with CAEPR or NCIS
  • Promote peer support
  • Support writing process in a friendly environment
  • Improve peer-reviewing capacities of participants.

These sessions will be coordinated by the participants, and participation will be based on their availability. Participants will be strongly encouraged to take part in and submit their work for the Read and Talk sessions.

This group aims to create a friendly environment to support the research writing process. Writing among peers offers a degree of social pressure which often helps overcome writing blockages. The short breaks between the writings blocks create a space where the writers can discuss their ideas with their peers; an exercise that is also helping the writing process. As the participants in this group share Indigenous research interests to varying degrees, this exchange of ideas can only lead to better research outcomes and design.

Time & venue: Shut up and Write sessions begin on the second week of Semester 1, over 26 weeks. Read and Talk sessions will replace the Shut up and Write sessions once every three weeks.

Enquiries & RSVP: Please contact Ms Annick Thomassin (CAEPR) or Ms Annie Te One (NCIS) if you would like to attend, and to confirm the date and location.

Updated:  13 January 2017/ Responsible Officer:  NCIS Project Coordinator/ Page Contact:  NCIS Administrative Officer