Mr Richard Maning

PhD scholar

BA (Hons) (UTAS)
Dip. Econ. Dev. (Oxford)
MAnth (ANU)

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Topic or working title

‘Discourse on Indigeneity in Australian Courts’

Abstract or summary

This study is an in-depth examination of selected Australian court cases dealing with issues relating to Aboriginal sovereignty, culture and identity. Its aim is to identify discourses, and underlying ideologies, embedded in those cases, and thereby to offer a critical appreciation of the extent to which Australian courts and individuals or groups may be operating to maintain particular forms of settler-colonial power relations, which impact negatively on the socio-political aspirations of Aboriginal Australians.

Panel members and positions

Primary Supervisor and Panel Chair:
Professor Mick Dodson, Director of NCIS and Professor at the ANU College of Law.


  • Associate Professor Cressida Fforde, Deputy Director, NCIS.
  • Dr Bill Fogarty, Research Fellow, NCIS.
  • Dr Fleur Adcock, Research Associate, NCIS.


Richard retired as a public sector lawyer in 2011, having worked up to that time as a legal counsel with the Commonwealth Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) for about ten years. He was admitted to practise law in Tasmania in 1988, and subsequently practised as a private sector lawyer – both in Sabah (Malaysia) and Tasmania (1989-1995). He then came to work in Canberra, first with the then Commonwealth Health Insurance Commission (now Medicare Australia) (1995-97), then with the ACT Treasury (1997-99), and subsequently with ACT Government Solicitor's Office (1999-2001), before moving to CASA.

Before commencing his legal studies at the University of Tasmania in 1984 (graduating with an LLB in 1987), and following graduation from his first set of tertiary qualifications (BA in 1968 and BA (Hons) in 1969, from the University of Tasmania), Richard worked in senior positions in the Sabah State Ministry of Finance (1970-1975), ending up as the permanent head of the Ministry (1976-1978), and then as the founding CEO of the Sabah Development Bank (for 5.5 years: 1978-1983).

Richard also has a postgraduate Diploma in Economic Development from the University of Oxford (1974), and had a one-year stint of teaching undergraduate economics at the University of Papua New Guinea (1975-76). He graduated with an ANU Master of Anthropology degree in 2012.

Updated:  12 August 2019/ Responsible Officer:  NCIS Project Coordinator/ Page Contact:  NCIS Administrative Officer