Archived News

Researcher Dr Tracy Woodroffe featured in Education Magazine

28 July 2021

NI researcher Dr Tracy Woodroffe explains the power of equipping pre-service teachers with sufficient experience in Indigenous context.

Featured in Education Matters Magazine, Tracy surmised that “Supervising teachers (non-Indigenous and Indigenous) in collaboration with Indigenous colleagues, are important players in the development of a culturally responsive teaching workforce.”

View article here 

Welcome to Renee Long

28 July 2021

A warm welcome to Renee Long. Renee is an Arrente, Walpiri and Waramangu woman with strong ongoing connections to land and family in the southern and western Barkly Regions. She has an extensive career in the public sector in both State and Federal Governments, most recently being the inaugural Chief Executive Officer for the Northern Territory Indigenous Business Network (and remains an active board member) and running her own advisory service. With Renee’s strong policy development, program management and remote service delivery experience and an extensive knowledge of the Northern Territory, she is a valued addition to NI’s research family.

You may have seen Renee speaking at the More than a Word: How Can Economics Contribute to Indigenous Reconciliation? event held by Women in Economics Australia and The Economic Society of Australia at Charles Darwin University Waterfront campus on Tuesday.

Research Interests in: Economic Development, Indigenous Livelihoods, Economic Participation and Workforce Development, Indigenous Health Perspectives & Cultural Competence.

View NI Profile here

NEW Q1 Paper

27 July 2021

As average global temperatures and frequencies of heat waves are increasing, planning for heat mitigation and the adaption of urban areas has never been so important.

So, how are we responding to the increasing heat in the Territory? Are our changing behaviours having detrimental effects on health and wellbeing? NI researchers Kerstin Zander, Fiona Shalley, Andrew Taylor, George Tan & Sigurd Dyrting confirm a growing dependence on artificially controlled environments to cope with heat in cities.

Read the full paper: “Run air-conditioning all day”: Adaptation pathways to increasing heat in the Northern Territory of Australia, in the journal of Sustainable Cities and Society (Volume 74, November 2021, 103194) here.

Welcome to Professor Jennifer Deger

21 July 2021

As a founding member of the award winning Arnhem Land-based arts collective, Miyarrka Media, Professor Jennifer Deger, joins Northern Institute with a commitment to furthering the potential of transdisciplinary & co-creative scholarship with her #Yolŋu research partners. Their current ARC project sets out to activate a Yolŋu digital art of renewal for threatened coastlines and beaches.

Research Interests & strengths: Art and visual culture in the Anthropocene, The blue humanities, Yolŋu Sea Country, Co-creative and non-traditional research methods, Experimental film and ethnography, Digital life & More-than-human worlds.

Read more about Jen's research here

Yolŋu elders share their voices on healing, country and people for NAIDOC Week 2021

15 July 2021

Wäŋa Ŋaraka Ŋayi Dhuwal Walŋakunhamirr/ The Country is a Healer

NI is celebrating NAIDOC week by sharing voices on healing, country and people, from Yolŋu elders: Gawura Waṉambi and Joy Bulkanhawuy, Waymamba Gaykamaŋu, Brenda Muthamuluwuy, Ian Mongunu Gumbula & Ellen Gapany. 

Read the full statements on the webpage: The Country is a Healer

Bininj Kunwok Online course receives great feedback from students

07 July 2021

Feedback from our recent Bininj Kunwok online short course:

“I have really enjoyed the course and found the structure to be very well designed, with the same units each week building on previously learnt knowledge. The inclusion of the cultural information has been really valuable, especially because it’s not been included in other language courses I’ve done and is such an important part of learning a language and living in a different culture!”

34 students enrolled (all online), of which 26 live and work in West Arnhem Land. The course is planned to run again in October-November.

Why study Bininj Kunwok? Find out more here

CALL FOR PAPERS - NI excited to co-host the Regional Refugee Forum in October 

01 July 2021

Organised by NI researcher George Tan.
Explore knowledge gaps, challenges and opportunities affecting the diverse processes and experiences of humanitarian migrant settlement in regional Australia.

> Abstracts due 26 July 2021
> Register attendance by 28 September
> Forum on 12 October 2021
> Roundtable on 15th October

Full details, themes and registrations at Regional Refugee Forum

Dr Kathy, NI Senior Researcher, welcomes the NT Administrator to her family

15 June 2021

In a beautiful private ceremony, NI Senior Researcher Gotha (Dr Kathy Guthadjaka AM) adopted the Administrator of the Northern Territory, Vicki O'Halloran, into her family at Government House (NT). 

Vicki said, "I am blessed now to have a beloved sister, Gotha, and an extended family throughout Arnhem Land. I will carry my malk with honour and pride. My family and I are truly moved by this cultural expression of unity and we are grateful for your love and kindness."

Read the Administrator's Facebook post here

NI presents research for Refugee Week 2021 to raise community awareness on the refugee experience

24 June 2021

Wrapping up Refugee Week with seminar 'FREE THE DARWIN 15' - NI researcher Professor Michael Christie, NI research students Stephen Enciso & Valerie Leishman plus University of Technology Sydney & Dr Sara Dehm (via Zoom) explored the human impacts of Australia’s refugee policy and examined the situation of the refugees currently detained at the Mercure Darwin Airport. 

Whilst Dr Ridwanul Hoque presented on challenges of protecting the Rohingya refugees & why Australia should take the case of Rohingya protection more seriously.

All the information and contacts shared at the seminar can be found on the event webpage Refugee Week 2021

In the audience, were filmmakers Robyn Hughan and Steven Warne of documentary Journey Beyond Fear (pictured far right with our presenters), in Darwin for the DASSAN Darwin Asylum Seeker Support and Advocacy Network fundraiser screening of their film.

TopEndSTS's 'Encountering Gurambai' series all about the current & historical connection to the Rapid Creek catchment area

15 June 2021

NI supported a fantastic few days of public events presented by TopEndSTS, as part of the Darwin leg of AusSTS2021. Exploring human and more-than-human worlds of this significant Darwin waterway: the events included a walk-shop along Gurambai/Rapid Creek, a solar-powered foreshore film night screening works by Miyarrka Media, and a food sharing workshop at the Lakeside Drive Community Garden.

View how it went on TopEndSTS's twitter

PhD Student wins Best Presentation at this year's SPA Conference

10 June 2021

PhD Student Emily Armstrong won the Best Student Oral presentation at this year’s Speech Pathology Australia National Conference, conducted online all the way from Galiwinku!

Presentation title: 
Nhaltjan limurr dhu djäma rrambaŋi manymakkum: How can we work well together in intercultural communication research?

DJÄKAMIRR Film underscores benefits of birthing on Country

07 June 2021

Filmed over two years in Arnhem Land, DJÄKAMIRR explores childbirth from the perspectives of Yolŋu women in Galiwin’ku, giving insight into the aspirations of remote First Nations communities to reclaim their birthing culture from the stronghold of Western medicine. For over 60-000 years Yolŋu childbirth happened on-country with skilled djäkamirr- midwifery caretakers -using ancestral wisdom and bush technologies to support women and babies.

This documentary follows Ḻäwurrpa and Sarah on a unique journey through ancestral time, country and culture; working with community to pilot the training of djäkamirr.

A collaboration between One20 Productions, Molly Wardaguga Research Centre, the Northern Institute and Charles Darwin University, the documentary is a creative output from the 'Caring for Mum on Country' project and part of the OFFICIAL SELECTION of the Garifuna International Indigenous Film Festival 2021.

The NT Premiere is set to run on August 12th 2021 at Darwin Deckchair Cinema 

Read article here

NEW Q1 PAPER: 'A spatial interpretation of Australia's COVID-vulnerability'

1 June 2021

Our demographers David KaracsonyiSigurd Dyrting & Andrew Taylor, argue that underlying social inequalities will always be the true ‘carriers’ of disastrous transmissions like the current virus.

Read the full paper published in the International Journal of Disaster Risk Reduction (Volume 61, July 2021, 102299) here

Yolŋu researchers share their voice for Reconciliation Week

1 June 2021

Our NI Yolŋu researchers Gawura, Bulkanhawuy and Ian Gumbula have shared their voices with ABC Australia for #ReconciliationWeek.

“Mulkay wäŋay ŋuli ga melkum napurruny wanhan rom dhukarr ga ŋorran napurruŋ Reconciliation-gu ga Sovereignty-w ga Diplomacy-w. Yaka walal gäna’kana barrkuwatj, rrambaŋi yän ga nininyŋuwuy nhirrpanawuy waŋarrwuŋ. Ŋuruŋiydhin romdhu yän napurr dhu ga nhinan mägayaŋur.”

‘More than a word’: practising reconciliation through Indigenous knowledge-sharing in tourism

27 May 2021

Northern Institute (NI) researchers and student have written an article featured in The Conversation. 

The 2020 reconciliation barometer survey revealed we are at a tipping point in our nation’s reconciliation journey, with public support for reconciliation higher than ever. It is time to take tangible steps to walk together towards a more fair, equitable and sustainable nation.

Authors: Nicole Curtin (NI HDR student), Dr Tracy Woodroffe (NI Researcher and Lecturer), Professor Steven Bird (NI Researcher) & Professor Ruth Wallace (NI Director & Researcher).    

Read more here

Territory Teacher: Y is for Yolŋu with ABC Radio

26 May 2021

Brenda Muthamuluwuy, Researcher and Yolŋu Language & Culture Lecturer, is from Galiwin'ku and in this package teaches ABC's Jack Schmidt about Yolŋu Matha - a widely spoken language in north-east Arnhem Land.

Listen to the ABC Radio interview here

EU Delegation Tours Campus.

25 May 2021

European Union Ambassador Michael Pulch visited the university along with 12 Member-State Trade and Investment Counsellors and Commissioners.

Presentations were given by Northern Institute researchers Dr Michaela Spencer, Dr Kerstin Zander and Fiona Shalley covering NI's research capability and capacity.

Read more here

Solar panels creating a huge waste problem for Australia - 

24 May 2021

NI research featured in The Conversation: Researchers predict Australia will accumulate 1 million tonnes of solar panel waste by 2047 — the same weight as 19 Sydney Harbour Bridges.

"To help lower our growing material footprint and keep e-waste out of landfills, we need to ensure solar panels are sustainable in life, as in death."

Read more here

Language Party a Success

23 May 2021

The annual Language Party took place at the lovely George Brown Darwin Botanic Gardens at sunset, where some extraordinary women took the stage to share stories in their own languages of Yolngu, Lingala, and Sinhala. The event was emceed by Aunty Bilawara Lee.

[Image: Joy Bulkanhawuy, NI Researcher & Lecturer in Aboriginal Studies]

Listen to the ABC Radio interview here

Australia's Contribution to Diplomacy 

21 May 2021

Charles Darwin University (CDU) recently hosted Australia's top diplomat Frances Adamson on campus to discuss the contributions of Indigenous Australia to our diplomacy.

The Secretary of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade was also Australia's ambassador to China from 2011 to 2015 and has just been announced as South Australia’s new governor.

Our Yolŋu researchers and Indigenous Diplomacy experts shared the historic and current experiences of Yolŋu people across Northern Australia, along with the contributions and interrelationships developed with the universities and Government to date.

Read more here

Northern Institute's Demography Research team highlights the role of the Territory in Australia’s quarantine system.

20 May 2021

CDU Research Associate with the Northern Institute, Fiona Shalley, has been researching the role NT quarantine centres played in assisting Australians move across State and Territory borders during the peak of COVID-19 restrictions.

Read more here

Vice Chancellor Northern Institute Lunch Visit. 

18 May 2021

It’s not every day that the Dean & Director Professor Ruth Wallace cooks you lunch, or the Vice Chancellor & Deputy Vice Chancellor of drops in for a visit.

Amidst cake, certificates and celebrations of operational staff, new and departing, the newly appointed VC Professor Scott Bowman acknowledged the dedication made by everyone during a challenging period impacted by COVID-19.

After presentations both the VC and Deputy Vice Chancellor, Mike Wilson, enjoyed lunch and chatted with staff on the breezeway.

COVID has made one thing very clear — we do not know enough about Australians overseas

6 May 2021

Northern Institute researchers Dr George Tan and Associate Professor Andrew Taylor with University of South Australia, Research Fellow, Kelly McDougall have published in The Conversation. Their article highlights the need for a national diaspora policy that truly reflects contemporary, multicultural Australia.

Read more here

2021 KNOWL­EDGE INTER­SEC­TIONS SYMPOSIUM:Doing inno­va­tion and com­mu­ni­cat­ing knowl­edge in cen­tral Australia

27 April 2021

20 – 21 Sep­tem­ber 2021 at the Desert Knowl­edge Precinct (475 Stu­art High­way, Alice Springs NT 0873)Co-host­ed by Charles Darwin University, Batch­e­lor Insti­tute of Indige­nous Ter­tiary

Edu­ca­tion, Desert Knowl­edge Research Insti­tute, and Desert Peo­ples Cen­tre.Invit­ing Expres­sions of Inter­est for: Sym­po­sium: Research Pre­sen­ta­tions & Sym­po­sium and Mar­ket Stalls: Show­cas­ing ​‘Doing Inno­va­tion’. EOI Entries close 16 July. Learn more or register here

AVETRA 2021 Conference Paper of the Year Award

AVETRA 2021 Conference Paper of the Year Award

27 April 2021

CONGRATULATIONS to Dr. Don Zoellner, University Fellow Northern Institute, who was awarded Best Conference Paper-Runner Up at the #AVETRA 21 Virtual Conference for his paper on “Trading in a state-created VET market: the regulatory intersection of social enterprise and for-profit providers”.

Study finds cultural inclusion key for remote Indigenous students

07 April 2021

Dr Gary Fry has been awarded the 2021 University of Sydney medal, the Sister Alison Bush Medal, for his PhD: Indigeneity as a foundation for patterned Northern Territory remote Aboriginal student achievement within a stratified western education system.

You can read his PhD HereThe award is for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students who have achieved a high standard of academic proficiency and contribution to Indigenous community development. This award is a key mechanism within the University of Sydney in celebrating the voices of Indigenous researchers and their decolonising voices. Read more....

NEW VC Emeritus Professor Scott Bowman AO addresses staff NEW VC Emeritus Professor Scott Bowman AO addresses staff

13 April 2021

We’ve got more potential for growth than any other university in Australia: NEW VC Emeritus Professor Scott Bowman AO addressed nearly 500 staff (in person & virtually) about his vision for CDU to become a Northern Australia Powerhouse in Research, VET & Higher Education. And after his presentation Professor Bowman joined the sausage sizzle cue chatting and listening to staff.

About Professor Scott Bowman

NT Youth Week Ambassadors 2021 announced

12 April 2021

Congratulations to Emily Ford & Sunny Liu appointed as NT Youth Week Ambassadors for 2021!

To find out more about events happening in your area visit:

NT Youth Week runs from 9-18 April

NT Adminstrator supports Wailing Women Project

NT Adminstrator supports Wailing Women Project

12 April 2021

Her Honour the Honourable Vicki O'Halloran AO, Administrator of the Northern Territory thanked Dr Kathy Guthadjaka AM, Reverend Thresi Mauboy, participants and organisers of the inaugural Milkarri Retreat, calling women together to revive the traditional roles that women have through wailing. 

Link to the Facebook post

Land rush on Darwin's outskirts as potential buyers miss out on grants

Land rush on Darwin's outskirts as potential buyers miss out on grants

06 April 2021

Northern Institute Honorary & Planning Expert, Associate Professor Sharon Harwood said she was worried about small block sizes and an apparent disregard for climate-responsive design affecting the liveability of new homes in the Top End — especially as temperatures are forecast to rise because of climate change. Professor Harwood said there needed to be a government-led push to consider climate-responsive housing design.

"The Northern Territory doesn't consider climate change [in the Planning Act], unlike other states and territories around Australia," she said.

"Short-term, we can release these lots quite cheaply, because there's lots of them, and they're tiny, and you can get great infrastructure efficiencies in terms of your sewerage and your waste and your drinking water, but the long-term impacts are going to be the electricity or the energy costs that are going to occur." Read more.....

COVID-19 vaccine info for Yolŋu: why do we need a vaccine?

Why do we need a vaccine?

29 March 2021

Why do we need a vaccine? What is the vaccine? Is the vaccine safe? How will I feel after I get the vaccine? How does the vaccine affect people with chronic conditions? Do pregnant women & children get the vaccine? All your vaccine questions answered in Yolŋu Matha.

Presented by Rarrtjiwuy Melanie Herdman, Rosemary Gundjarranbuy and Dr Jane Davies.
Produced by Miwatj Health & Menzies Research -

‘Everyone Together’ Aboriginal Affairs Strategy Progress Report 2021

‘Everyone Together’ Aboriginal Affairs Strategy Progress Report 2021

26 March 2021

The first annua

l Progress Report for the ‘Everyone Together’ Aboriginal Affairs Strategy was released today in Darwin. The Report presents data provided by NT Government agencies that outlines progress against each of the Strategy’s 67 measures and 21 primary initiatives.

Ed Fejo provided the Welcome to Country accompanied by Lesley on didgeridoo. Speaker of the Northern Territory Legislative Assembly Chansey Paech MC'd the event with Member for Arnhem & Minister for Aboriginal Affairs, Selena Uibo speaking. Selena told her own story about being an educator and then moving into representing Territorians - her parents in the front row.

The event also included a special performance by the One Mob Different Country dancers.

Download Everyone Together - Aboriginal Affairs Strategy Progress Report 2021

Dr George Tan


23 March 2021

Demographer Dr George Tan has recently been appointed by Alex Hawke, Minister for Immigration, Citizenship, Migrant Services and Multicultural Affairs to be a member of his Ministerial Advisory Council for Skilled Migrationz.

The Ministerial Advisory Council on Skilled Migration (MACSM) is a tripartite body, comprising of industry, unions, State and Territory government representatives and any other members nominated by the Minister for Immigration, Citizenship, Migrant Services and Multicultural Affairs. MACSM provides advice to the Minister on Australia’s temporary and permanent skilled migration programs and associated matters.


Yolŋu Researchers Workshop, Galiwin'ku

Yolŋu Researchers Workshop, Galiwin'ku, 16-17 March 2021

23 March 2021

Charles Darwin University and Yalu Aboriginal Corporation held Yolŋu Researchers Workshops on Tuesday and Wednesday. We talked about research that has been conducted in Galiwin'ku and how to get the findings out so that everyone can understand and act on them. Experienced and emerging Yolŋu researchers joined in the conversations, which were in Yolŋu Matha (Yolŋu languages).

We have started a committee to support future research in Galiwin'ku. The committee will build on what is already grounded here. From this strong foundation, we will guide researchers in a strong process.Through Yalu & Northern Institute social media, we plan to keep sharing dhäwu about research that is important for Yolŋu. Watch this space for more news.

Watch the Yolŋu Researchers Workshop recording:

#YolŋuResearch #CDUresearch

Images are not be copied, reproduced or used for any other purpose without permission of the researchers

Demographer Fiona Shalley

NT men still outnumber women as COVID hits multi-million-dollar population strategy

Northern Institute demographer Fiona Shalley said research shows that while jobs drive people to migrate to the Territory, women are often motivated to move away, to be closer to family, who are usually interstate.

"Men come and go, but women come and go more often," she said. "When they start to have babies, that's when they're looking to their families for that extra support.

"That's an extra seven men (per 100) and that's really quite unusual compared to every jurisdiction in Australia." Read more....

Learning Communities


19 March 2021

We encourage articles in various fields of research that advance our knowledge and understanding of social contexts in Australia and internationally with an emphasis on the socio-cultural dimensions of learning in different contexts and configurations. Information about the journal, submission guideline and guidance for authors can be found on

Submission closed: 23 April 2021

For General Enquiries & Submissions: Pawinee Yuhun, Copy Editor/Journal Coordinator /T: 08 8946 7465

'Investing in Aboriginal languages' project.

'Investing in Aboriginal languages'

18 March 2021

Our researchers are hard at work this week in breathtaking Kimberley WA doing fieldwork for our 'Investing in Aboriginal languages' project.

Project info

Pic from left: Professor Steven Bird, Dr Jennyfer Lawrence Taylor and Dr Cathy Bow.

Shoes galore bound for Daly River

Shoes galore bound for Daly River

17 March 2021

Charles Darwin University Education lecturer Dr Gavin Morris couldn’t believe his eyes when he opened his door to 100 kilograms of brand-new shoes and clothing.

Dr Morris and Northern Institute Partnerships Coordinator Katrina Britnell had put out a call for donations of shoes to help the Daly River community in the Northern Territory’s western Top End.

The Top End has had an unusually good wet season, but the inundation has left the small riverside community in flood. CDU colleagues and Darwin people rallied and donated 200 pairs of shoes in just a few weeks but finding the mystery donor of two pallets of sports shoes and clothes took some detective work. Read Full story.....

Dr Tracy Woodroffe


12 March 2021

'The important role of supervising teachers to improve Indigenous educational outcomes'

Dr Tracy Woodroffe (CDU Lecturer & Researcher) explains the power of equipping pre-service teachers with sufficient experience in Indigenous context. - Page 28

NI Celebrates Dr Wendy Page

NI Celebrates Dr Wendy Page NT Australian of the Year

12 March 2021

NT Australian of the Year, Dr Wendy Page and Professor Ruth Wallace had a chance for more discussion and a cuppa after our first International Women’s Day webinar this week.

We don’t think you could find another person in Australia (or the world!) more passionate about Strongyloidiasis disease than Wendy. Wendy asked us to share the details of the Tropical Health Orientation Manual she referred to in the webina

r. This book is published by the Centre for Remote Health and you can order a hard copy or PDF version online here >

Wendy is such an inspirational person to be around and we really enjoyed having her here at NI.We look forward to seeing how she continues her Strongyloidiasis disease advocacy work in her role as our NT Australian of the Year 2021.

Next week our special guest will be Young Australian of the Year, Isobel Marshall, you can find details and REGISTER HERE

IWD 2021 image

Celebrating International Women's Day 2021

05 March 2021

Our 2021 Annual International Women’s Day event has gone virtual and we've got 2 SUPER WOMEN as our webinar special guests. 

A CONVERSATION WITH DR WENDY PAGE NT Australian of the Year 2021 - 10 March 2021
The inspiring and compelling Dr Wendy Page will be sitting down with Professor Ruth Wallace to chat about becoming the 2021 NT recipient of the Australian of the Year Award. Wendy will also talk about her work with Miwatj Health Aboriginal Corporation, raising awareness of Stronglyliodiasis and sharing her thoughts on the #ChoosetoChallenge theme for this years International Women’s Day. Webinar includes Q&A session.

ENDING PERIOD POVERTY WITH ISOBEL MARSHALL Young Australian of the Year 2021 - 17 March 2021
Young Australian of the Year 2021, Isobe

Isobel Marshall will present on her work to have period poverty on the national agenda to ensure periods are not a barrier to education or cause shame, and that menstrual products be accessible and affordable. Also what it took to Crowdfund and launch the TABOO brand of menstrual health products that uses 100% of its profits to fund sanitary care and education programs. Isobel will also address the International Women’s Day 2021 theme #ChoosetoChallenge. Webinar includes Q&A session.

Virtual via ZOOM - Registration is compulsory, REGISTER HERE

Angela Sheedy Webinar

The NT COVID Emergency Response Workforce: Working to Keep the NT Safe

04 March 2021

The NT is one of the last Australian jurisdictions to have avoided community transmission & it also boasts the nation's lowest caseload & no deaths. Today 10.30am Angela Sheedy presents on the NT's COVID-19 response. Register to attend the webinar

Professor Ridwanul Hoque

An IASH Work-in-Progress Seminar given by Professor Ridwanul Hoque

03 March 2021

Event date: Wednesday 3 March
Time: 7:30 pm (ACST)
Link to Join:

Citizenship, mass-denationalization, and statelessness in mighty States: The cases of the Rohingya and India’s NRC. More details and Abstract

Ridwanul Hoque is Professor of Law at the University of Dhaka, Bangladesh. He is currently a University Professorial Fellow at Northern Institute, The College of Indigenous Futures, Arts and Society, Charles Darwin University, Australia. Learn more about Dr. Ridwanul Hoque

Dr Linda Mirrwana & Wurrkama TheoryMirrwana & Wurrkama Theory: an Indigenist Research Methodology

02 March 2021

Northern Institute researcher Associate Professor Linda Ford, on the invitation of Denise Baxter, Vice-Provost Indigenous Initiatives at Lakehead University is presenting for their 'Global Indigenous Speakers Series' this Thursday 4 March 9.30am (ACST).

To join >

#CDUresearch #IndigenousKnowledge #IndigenousResearch #IndigenousLeaders

Prof Scott Bowman


23 February 2021

The Council of Charles Darwin University (CDU) has formally endorsed the appointment of Professor Scott Bowman AO as Vice-Chancellor and President.

About Professor Scott Bowman AO
Professor Bowman grew up in Northamptonshire, England. He began his professional life with a two-year diploma course to become a radiographer. This led to him working as a senior radiographer in several London hospitals before starting his teaching and lecturing career in the UK.

In 1998, he left the UK for Australia to take up the position of Head of the School of Clinical Sciences at Charles Sturt University. He holds a Master of Politics and Government, a PhD in Clinical Decision Making and a Master of Business Administration. He has served as Vice-Chancellor and President of Central Queensland University, and Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Registrar at James Cook University. He is currently Senior Deputy Vice-Chancellor at Western Sydney University. In recognition of his service to higher education in Australia, Professor Bowman was appointed as an Officer of the Order of Australia in the 2019 Queen’s Birthday Honours.
CLICK ON LINK to view a video message from Professor Bowman.

Senior Australian of the Year, educator, activist and artist Dr Miriam-Rose Ungunmerr Bauman

13th anniversary of the National Apology to the Stolen Generations

17 February 2021

Senior Australian of the Year, educator, activist and artist Dr Miriam-Rose Ungunmerr Baumann was the special guest speaker at an event marking the 13th anniversary of the National Apology to the Stolen Generations. The breakfast is hosted annually by the Office of the Pro Vice Chancellor Indigenous Leadership and Regional Outreach (PVCILRO) lead by Professor Reuben Bolt.

James Parfitt-Fejo opened with a Welcome to Country acknowledging his Nanna, Lorna "Nanna Nungala" Fejo (born 14 June 1930) a Warumungu woman named by the Prime Minister of Australia, Kevin Rudd, in his historic Apology to the Stolen Generations, on 13 February 2008. At four years of age, she was forcibly removed from her family and community at Tennant Creek. She never again saw her mother, who died before she was able to leave institutional care at age sixteen. James spoke of his family’s history, the importance of reconciling in the heart and mind, and healing at a multi-generational level. Read more...

Smoothing destination

NEW PUBLICATION in 'The Annals of Regional Science' (Vol 66 Issue 1 Feb 21) by our Demography experts

17 February 2021

'Smoothing destination-specific migration flows'

> Sigurd Dyrting
> Andrew Taylor

Read the paper here

Intercultural Mediation (5 day) Intensive Workshop IAS539/IAS402Intercultural Mediation (5 day) Intensive Workshop IAS539/IAS402

10 February 2021

This 5 day intensive workshop provides participants with the knowledge and skills to become a mediator under the National Mediator Accreditation Standards (NMAS). The workshop is designed as an introductory mediation course through the lens of working cross culturally, in particular in Indigenous communities. It will provide you with a theoretical framework for contemporary mediation, skills and tools, and practice.

WORKSHOP FACILITATORS: Mawul Rom Peacemaking Indigenous Corporation in partnership with the College of Indigenous Futures, Education, Arts & Society (Charles Darwin University)

WHEN: 22-26 February 2021 (8.30am - 5.00pm)
WHERE: Blue 2 Precinct, CDU Casuarina Campus

Visit the workshop webpage to find out more and register

Dr Andrew TaylorMIX 104.9 Radio Katie Woolf spoke with CDU Demographer Northern Institute Society Associate Professor Andrew Taylor

08 February 2021

Mix 104.9's Katie Woolf spoke with Northern Institute's Andrew Taylor this morning about the NT's population and who are the people 'bunkering down' and staying in the Territory. Listen to the interview here

Research tracks COVID-19 impacts on the NT’s population

Research tracks COVID-19 impacts on the NT’s population

08 February 2021

Researchers have provided a first glimpse into the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on population dynamics, finding that sentiments towards remaining in the Northern Territory had grown since before the pandemic, especially for young people.

The team of demographers at Charles Darwin University’s Northern Institute have released research today showing the global pandemic has changed sentiments towards coming to, staying in or leaving the Northern Territory.

Dr Andrew Taylor said the team responded to the need to track increased dynamism for migration created by the pandemic and national and international border restrictions. Read the full Story and The full report is available here

 Internal Sustainable Development Commitment of Public Agencie

New Journal Article

08 February 2021

Congratulations to NI Principal Researcher Prof Rolf Gerritsen and NI Postdoctoral Researcher, Dr Kuntal Goswami on publishing the article “Internal Sustainable Development Commitment of Public Agencies in Three Australian States: Evidence through Sustainability Reporting Practices” in the journal ‘The International Journal of Sustainability Policy and Practice’.

This research article aims to examine the extent of holistic sustainability (economic, environmental, and social) disclosure practices of public agencies in Tasmania, South Australia, and Western Australia under the influence of over-arching state-based public policies. The article also investigates other factors that have influenced these disclosure practices. DOI:

Realist Research and Evaluation Online Program 2021

Realist Research and Evaluation Online Program 2021

05 February 2021

This 6-week online program is available to researchers and evaluators in organisations and government departments; to commissioners of research and evaluation; Master of Public Policy and other post-graduate University students; and those who want to develop new research and evaluation skills.

This course is facilitated by our realist evaluation leaders:
> Professor Gill Westhorp leads realist research and evaluation projects, provides professional development in evaluation and realist methods around the world.
> Kim Grey has almost 30 years’ experience as an internal evaluation manager and advisor for the Australian Government, designing complex evaluations including impact, participatory and realist approaches.


Masters Opportunity: Towards Zero Waste Construction

EOI DEADLINE EXTENDED! Masters Opportunity: Towards Zero Waste Construction

03 February 2021

We are funding a Masters by Research position to work on a project researching ways towards designing and constructing zero-waste buildings. This project will explore methodologies and processes to design and construct with the aim of reducing construction waste stream to landfill. In 2018-19, construction waste stream was one of the largest generators of waste in Australia with an increase of 22% since 2016-17. This is an opportunity to work on identifying ways of managing this waste and achieving circular economy in the design and construction sector.

This scholarship offers a living allowance of $28,597 (2021 rate) per annum and a tuition fee waiver for up to two years. Applicants should hold minimum qualifications equivalent to Second Class Honours A.

It is preferable that the successful candidate resides in Alice Springs while completing the project. They will be selected on the basis of their strength of academic performance and compatibility of research expertise and industry skill. This EOI deadline has been extended to 1 March 2021 5:00pm (ACST).

Find out more>

NTG Aftershock Event

'Silver linings - beyond the silos' Presentaions are now available to view online

01 February 2021

The recorded presentations from our 'Silver linings - beyond the silos' event facilitated with NTG's Office of the Commissioner for Public Employment (17 Nov 2020) are now available to view online. LINK TO VIDEOS 

You can also access a summary report about the event and learn about the NT specific insights, mindsets, structures and new ways of working that we heard about from our speakers.

Dr Matt Brearley

The cost of extreme weather and the impact of heat stress on workers

27 January 2021

Dr Matt Brearley, NI Honorary University Fellow & Thermal Physiologist at the National Critical Care and Trauma Response Centre (Darwin, NT), spoke to ABC Radio Darwin's Rick Hind about the cost of extreme weather and the impact of heat stress on workers (especially in Darwin) who are high-risk. Matt says it's a BIG DEAL and that people who have diabetes, high blood pressure, chronic kidney disease, and heart conditions are at high risk of heat stress. All that PLUS how to to avoid 'brain freeze'
Scroll to >1:12:23

Dikul Baker

Indigenous language materials support online learning

Charles Darwin University has enhanced its reputation as a pioneer in Indigenous education by making online learning more accessible through the development of Indigenous language materials. Researchers at CDU’s Northern Institute have produced video resources in Yolŋu Matha to support speakers of those languages to access online learning materials.

CDU student Dikul Baker, from Galiwinku, has worked with CDU staff to make the university’s online learning tool, Learnline, more accessible to Indigenous students. In the videos, she demonstrates how to use the platform and the various support services available for remote learners in English and in her own Djambarrpuyŋu language, which is understood by most Yolŋu. Full sotry and link to the materials

Jodi Cowdery has won the SAGE Indigenous Researcher Scholarship for 2020

NI’s Jodi Cowdery has won the SAGE Indigenous Researcher Scholarship for 2020

16 December 2020

Jodi Cowdery has won the SAGE Indigenous Researcher Scholarship for 2020. Jodi recently joined the NI family and is working with our Demography team undertaking a PhD exploring the relationships between mining & Indigenous livelihoods. At the award presentation Jodi said she will use her $3K prize money to travel & engage with remote Indigenous communities for her research. CONGRATS JODI!

Jodi is pictured with Anthony Hornby (CDU Director Library Services) who presented the award.

MPP Student Award

Best Master of Public Policy (MPP) Student Award 2020

15 December 2020

WELL DONE to Rochelle Dennis who took out the Best Master of Public Policy (MPP) Student Award at the CIFAS Student Awards 2020.

Rochelle earned the award by having the highest GPA for a student enrolled in the MPP. GREAT WORK!

Are you thinking of studying Public Policy in 2021? Find out more about studying with Northern Institute here:

PhD oppertunity

Expression of Interest PhD Opportunity

15 December 2020

We're seeking an enthusiastic current (or future) PhD student who is passionate about exploring the best way to create effective pathways for Tiwi residents to play active and diversified roles in local tropical forestry plantations, and integrate those in a broader Tiwi workforce strategy.

The successful applicant will be required to reside in Darwin and will receive an annual stipend (circa $28,000AUD per annum) + paid sick leave, maternity leave and a relocation allowance of up to $2,000.

Interested candidates are asked to submit an Expression of Interest by February 1, 2021.

More details about the opportunity can be found at:

NI Staff AwardsNI cleaned up at College of Indigenous Futures, Arts & Society (CIFAS) 2020 Research and Professional Staff Awards!

13 December 2020

Exceptional Performance by Professional Staff of CIFAS in 2020
Aravinda Senarath, for excellent performance in providing outstanding and timely financial service and advice.

Exceptional Performance in Research in CIFAS in 2020
Early Career Researcher Award: Michaela Spencer, for excellence in culturally safe research collaboration with Indigenous communities and the creation and implementation of Indigenous Community Based Research micro-credentials.

Exceptional Research Award: Fiona Shalley, Sigurd Dyrting, George Tan, Dávid Karácsonyi, Andrew Taylor, and Jan Salmon, for outstanding 2020 publication output of 10 published Q1 journal articles, five published Q2 journal articles, 1 book, 7 book chapters and 3 technical reports by end of October 2020.

Indigenous Language SymposiumSAVE THE DATE

10 December 2020

Indigenous Languages & Health Communication Sysposium Workshop 2021

12 -14 May 2021

Expression of interest to present will open early 2021

work with usNeed a sea change in 2021? 

09 December 2020

We’re looking for research leaders to join our world class team.

Professor of Political Science:

Professor in Indigenous Social Research

Applications Close: 11 January 2021

Cathy BowIntroducing...DR Cathy Bow!

08 December 2020

We would like to congratulate Dr Cathy Bow on the completion of her PhD.

Dr Cathy’s research was on "Entanglements of digital technologies and Indigenous language work in the Northern Territory''

NI Researchers ARC grants

CDU News: Northern Institute Language researchers awarded ARC grant

04 December 2020

A team of Indigenous and non-Indigenous researchers at Charles Darwin University have been awarded a grant to study Aboriginal language programs in the Northern Territory and Western Australia.

Northern Institute Professor Steven Bird said the $366,000 Australian Research Council Discovery grant would enable the team to work with communities to construct a substantial evidence base, leading to better understandings about how Aboriginal languages are revitalised and maintained. Read the full story

New Publication - Post-Critical Mobile Pedagogy

CRITICAL MOBILE PEDAGOGY - Cases of Digital Technologies and Learners at the Margins

01 December 2020

Chapter 14
'Post-Critical Mobile Pedagogy in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Contexts'
Co-written by Professor Ruth Wallace & Greg Williams

Now available for pre-order:

NI LinkedIn

Follow Us On LinkedIn Now

26 Novemeber 2020

You can now stay up-to-date with Northern Institute news and events via our NEW LinkedIn account.

Visit or type in Northern Institute in the Search area of the LinkedIn site to connect.

Book launch : Gupapuyŋu Goḏu-Mayali’mirri Dhäruk ga Dhäwu Mala

Book launch : Gupapuyŋu Goḏu-Mayali’mirri Dhäruk ga Dhäwu Mala

25 November 2020

Y'day we celebrated the launch of Gupapuyŋu Goḏu-Mayali’mirri Dhäruk ga Dhäwu Mala by Waymamba Gaykamaŋu, Yasunori Hayashi & illustrated by Brenda Muthamuluwuy.

Gupapuyŋu Goḏu-Mayali’mirri Dhäruk ga Dhäwu Mala is a careful work of meaning-making with Waymamba Gaykamaŋu as a Yolŋu Aboriginal elder and Yasunori Hayashi, a non-Indigenous coordinator of Yolŋu Studies Centre (YSC) at College of Indigenous Futures, Arts & Society (CDU). Accompanied with narratives and illustrations, this language resource comprises of more than two hundred idioms in particular body-part related in Waymamba’s Gupapuyŋu Dhuwala, one of Yolŋu Aboriginal languages from East Arnhem Land in the Northern Territory, Australia.

Yolŋu Aboriginal people and their languages have many ways of connecting their bodies, and parts of their bodies to things and actions in the outside world. This book explores the ‘hidden meanings’ of many Gupapuyŋu language compound words and opens up insights into different and unexpected Yolŋu ways of thinking and being in the world. More images

The book is available to buy at the CDU bookshop in store and online visit

CDU secures $2 million research boost

CDU secures $2 million research boost

20 November 2020

Charles Darwin University researchers have been awarded more than $2 million in funding following the latest round of Australian Research Council funding announcements. The announcement includes funding for five projects led by teams across CDU’s Research Institute for the Environment and Livelihoods (RIEL) and the Northern Institute, and a further two where CDU researchers are collaborators on projects led by other universities.

The Northern Institutes team of Professor Steven Bird, Professor Michael Christie and Dr Michaela Spencer were awarded a Discovery grant of $366, 000 for their project to ‘Invest in Aboriginal languages’. This project will aim to develop the first systematic account of Aboriginal Language programs and understand what makes them effective and sustainable. Read more....

the Indigenous Pre-Accounting Enabling Program

Calculating a pathway for Indigenous accountants

18 November 2020

The launch of the Indigenous Pre-Accounting Enabling Program - this is an initiative of CDU's Asia Pacific College of Business & Law and will significantly boost the number of Indigenous accountants working across NT & Australia.

Read about the program:

New paper - Tom Wilson and Fiona ShelleyNEW PAPER!

18 November 2020

What is the size of Australia's sexual minority population? Lead by NI adjunct Tom Wilson & NI Demographer Fiona Shalley + Jeromey Temple (Uni Melbourne) & Anthony Lyons (LaTrobe Uni).

Read the paper in BMC Research Notes Journal here

NT Aftershok Webinar

Silver Linings: Beyond The Silos

17 November 2020

Thank you to everyone on the stage, on video and behind the scenes for your efforts to produce the NTG/Northern Institute webinar 'Silver Linings: Beyond the Silos' event today.

The response has been amazingly positive and constructive - thanks for spending the time to send us your feedback.

If you missed it - a recording will be available to view in the next week. More about the #NTaftershock event can be found here:

Dr Deepika Mathur

Australia's Solar PV Panels Recycling Challenge

10 November 2020

NI researcher Deepika Mathur talks to Rick Ralph on the 'Talking Garbology' podcast about Australia's Solar PV Panels Recycling Challenge (23 mins).

Listen at

Read the Report

Population Space and Place


04 November 2020

The future growth and spatial shift of Australia's Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander population, 2016–2051.

> Associate Professor Andrew Taylor (NI)
> Dr Tom Wilson (NI Adjunct & University of Melbourne)
> Jeromey Temple (University of Melbourne)
> Maragaret Kelaheron (University of Melbourne)

Research Article is Open Access:

CDU joins nation to celebrate NAIDOC Week

CDU joins nation to celebrate NAIDOC Week

02 Novemeber 2020

Charles Darwin University will join the national celebration of NAIDOC Week with a series of events including the launch of a strategy that acknowledges the contributions of Indigenous peoples to education and addresses gaps that continue between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples. NAIDOC Week, which celebrates the history, culture and achievements of Indigenous peoples, will kick off with a Yarning Circle, Bush Medicine workshops and live music on CDU’s Alice Springs campus on Monday, 9 November. 

Other events include an Elders lunch hosted by CDU Larrakia Academic-in-Residence, Billawarra Lee (Aunty B), a film screening of “Black Divaz” hosted by one of the stars of the film Ben Gratez and a Zoom “Making Things Lively” on the Yolŋu art of digital connection presented by Paul Gurrumuruwuy and Jennifer Deger from Gapuwiyak. Read more....

Experts to host Alice population seminar

Experts to host Alice population seminar

02 Novemeber 2020

A team of expert demographers from Charles Darwin University’s Northern Institute will present insights from recent population research and what it means for Central Australia in a seminar at Alice Springs campus on Monday.

Research Associate Fiona Shalley of the Demography and Growth Planning team said the event would include an open discussion about the population opportunities and challenges facing the people of Alice Springs.

“It’s a town that has experienced a steady decline in population since 2011, but the NT’s COVID-safe reputation may influence its future,” Ms Shalley said. “A Focus on Alice: People, Place & Pandemic Impacts” seminar will be held on Monday 2 November from 4pm to 6pm at the Higher Education building theatre (Building 15), Alice Springs campus. Link to E-news

$50,000 grant to advance Aboriginal justice in NT

$50,000 grant to advance Aboriginal justice in NT

02 Novemeber 2020

Charles Darwin University’s Northern Institute and Menzies School of Health Research have won a $50,000 tender to draft the final version of the NT Aboriginal Justice Agreement.

Dr Michaela Spencer, a post-doctoral Fellow with Northern Institute, said work was already well advanced on the agreement, which outlines how the NT Government and Aboriginal Territorians will work together to improve justice outcomes for Aboriginal people. The other members of the project group are Northern Institute’s Professor Ruth Wallace, College of Indigenous Futures, Arts & Society Rayleen Hinchliffe, University of the Sunshine Coast Adjunct Professor David Hollinsworth, and Menzies School of Health Research Director Professor Alan Cass. FULL STORY

Fellowship gives researchers global access

Fellowship gives researchers global access

02 Novemeber 2020

A Charles Darwin University lecturer has been awarded an exclusive fellowship gaining her access to a global network which focuses on open education practices. 

Northern Institute lecturer in cultural knowledges Dr Johanna Funk was awarded the fellowship by the Global OER Graduate Network (GO-GN), which is a group of PhD candidates from around the world whose research projects focus on open education. 

Open education encompasses resources, tools and practices that employ a framework of open sharing to improve educational access and effectiveness among students. Link to the Enews story

Prof Ruth Wallace

Northern Institute celebrates 10 years

12 October 2020

One of the Northern Territory’s leading research institutions bringing an independent voice to issues impacting Territorians is celebrating a major milestone this week – its 10th birthday. Established in October 2010, the Charles Darwin University Northern Institute was developed through a partnership with the Northern Territory Government to undertake high quality analysis in social policy and research with a focus on northern Australia. Over the past decade research at the institute has addressed issues in the demography, regional development, Indigenous knowledges and collaborative governance of the region.

Northern Institute Director Ruth Wallace said the institute was developed by local people, to bring an independent voice to local issues and build local capacity through excellence in research and research training.

“The team has partnered with Territorians through many changes and has grown well beyond its original vision, now recognised internationally for its work on public policy, regional and Indigenous communities,” she said. Link to the full story

NI 10 year anniversary

We're celebrating a decade of People. Policy. Place!

08 October 2020

In October 2010 Chief Minister Paul Henderson launched the Northern Institute with a vision for our institution, through a partnership between Charles Darwin University and the Northern Territory Government, to undertake high quality analysis in social and public policy research.10 years on AND with over $35M of successful grants under our belt, NI has transformed into the “go to” institution of government, NGO’s, industry and communities for independent and comprehensive social and public policy research in Northern Australia.

The key to our success? The strategic and innovative vision of Director, Professor Ruth Wallace, our outstanding staff of nationally and internationally renowned research professionals and our invaluable network of research partners and collaborators. We acknowledge the achievements of an organisation are the results of the combined efforts of every individual. Thank you to all our friends, colleagues and supporters for being part of our first 10 years.

Happy anniversary, Northern Institute!

The NI 10th Anniversary @9NewsDarwin story from Monday, 12 October night can be viewed here:

HDR Students graduation ceremony

HDR students rewarded at graduates celebration

05 October 2020

The achievements of Charles Darwin University’s Higher Degree by Research (HDR) students were acknowledged at a HDR Graduates Celebration held on 23 September. 

Held in the Mal Nairn Auditorium, the celebration was led by Deputy Vice Chancellor Research and Innovation, Professor Bogdan Dlugogorski.  

Approximately 12 graduates and their families attended the celebration in person, while some of the 25 graduates who were unable to attend the event tuned in via Zoom. Image Gallery

Fiona Shelly

Survey explores Territory migration since COVID-19

05 october 2020

Charles Darwin University researchers have developed a survey to provide a better understanding of COVID-19’s impact on population migration patterns into and out of the Northern Territory. “The Territory and Me - COVID Update” will build on previous research to investigate how the Territory is perceived as a place to live, a future migration destination or a transition place to another location. CDU Northern Institute demographer Fiona Shalley said researchers were interested in why people were in the Territory now.

“It’s about our population, particularly anyone who has newly arrived – and whether they think the Territory is a good place to be during the current uncertain times,” Ms Shalley said.

“And everyone is a potential Territorian, even if it’s for a short time. So we encourage people to complete the survey and then share it with their family and friends.” The research will build on a previous successful survey completed by CDU researchers last year. Full CDU Enews Story

The survey is open to everyone 18 years and over, regardless of whether they are a current Territorian. Visit to access the survey. All participants can opt to go into a prize draw. First prize is a $500 retail voucher and there are two supplementary vouchers valued at $100 each.

Eureka finalists

CDU researchers take places as Eureka finalists

05 October 2020

Charles Darwin University researchers are part of two teams announced as finalists in categories of the prestigious Australian Museum Eureka Prizes. The Cat Ecology, Impact and Management Team led by CDU’s Professor John Woinarski in partnership with researchers from the Australian National University and the University of Sydney is a finalist in the Prize for Applied Environmental Research.

CDU-CSIRO Responsible Innovation Research Fellow Dr Jennifer Macdonald is part of the Kakadu NESP team working to solve complex environmental management problems in Kakadu National Park who are finalists in the Prize for STEM Inclusion. The Indigenous-led science to monitor Kakadu project is unique, mixing responsible artificial intelligence and modern science with traditional knowledge to care for animal species and habitats. The Northern Institute researcher said the project aims to ensure that Indigenous knowledge is protected appropriately. Read more....

(HDR) students creative art calsses

Wellbeing at the centre of student-run creative art classes

05 October 2020

Providing students with an outlet to express themselves creatively is the aim of a wellness workshop established by two Charles Darwin University Higher Degree Research (HDR) students. An initiative of PhD students Eva San and Varunika Ruwanpura, the HDR Student Wellbeing Workshop is run monthly and designed for students to take part in art and free writing sessions to complement their graduate studies.

Eva said the “therapeutic art-making” workshop allowed students to interact with each other and express their creativity.  “It’s a good place for students to connect and create a supportive community,” she said. Read the full story here

To become involved in the next student wellbeing workshop, HDR students can contact Eva San ( or Varunika Ruwanpura (

New Demography Book


23 September 2020

A HUGE congratulations to NI researcher and PhD student Dr David Karácsonyi, who has led six years of hard work, with A/Pro Andrew Taylor for the publication (overnight) of the book 'The Demography of Disasters: Impacts for Population and Place' (Springer).

This manuscript originates from a long-standing collaboration with the Geographical Institute of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences; as well as the University of Iceland, with whom the other editor and long-time collaborator Deanne Bird is associated.

This open access book provides worldwide examples demonstrating the importance of the interplay between demography and disasters in regions and spatially. It marks an advance in practical and theoretical insights for understanding the role of demography in planning for and mitigating impacts from disasters in developed nations. This is an OPEN ACCESS book and available to download for FREE via Springer at this link:

Research reveals key drivers for migration south

Dr Kerstin Zander

11 September 2020

With the build-up on the way, new research has found that along with the tyranny of distance and high living costs, heat is one of the key drivers moving people from the tropics to Australia’s cooler southern states. The research published in Sustainable Cities and Society is a joint study by Charles Darwin University academics Professor Stephen Garnett and Associate Professor Kerstin Zander, and links climate change to migration.

“Cities in tropical regions, already hot, will experience more days of extreme heat as the climate changes,” said Dr Zander from CDU’s Northern Institute. Link to the Newsroom story

NT New Cabinet

NT Government's new Cabinet sworn in amid concern over Michael Gunner's appointment as Treasurer

08 September 2020

Michael Gunner has officially swung open the door to his new Cabinet, telling his newly sworn-in leadership team it must steer the NT through the coronavirus pandemic. And Mr Gunner said one significant change in the new Cabinet — his decision to hand himself the role of Treasurer — would keep the same issues in the spotlight in his second term.

A political economist has labelled Mr Gunner's decision to appoint himself as Treasurer "highly unusual" and voiced concern it could reduce accountability in the new Cabinet.

Rolf Gerritsen, a professorial research fellow at Northern Institute (Charles Darwin University), said the appointment was politically risky given Mr Gunner's existing workload. But he said his greater concern was that it could remove significant checks and balances on government spending."The treasurer, in theory, is the person at the Cabinet table who says, 'Hang on a sec, how much is that going to cost?'" Mr Gerritsen told ABC Radio Darwin. Read the full article here

 Leonie Norrington, Cathy Bow, Stephen Dhamarrandji and Michaela Spencer

High praise for Northern Institute researchers

07 September 2020

A team of researchers at Charles Darwin University’s Northern Institute has won international recognition for excellence in the field of science and technology studies (STS) at a virtual conference hosted in Prague.

The team, comprising Michaela Spencer, Cathy Bow, Yasunori Hayashi, Leonie Norrington, Simon West and Jennifer MacDonald, won the international Society for Social Studies of Science “Making and Doing Award” for a digital presentation of their Ground Up research work.

Their inquiry showcased research on re-presentation, evaluation, identity, languageness, credentials and evidence, from their ongoing work with Indigenous co-researchers and collaborators.

The biennial award celebrates scholarly practices that express science, technology and scientific knowledge that extend beyond the academic paper or book. CDU Enews Story

Professor Rolf Gerritsen presents Faye Strachan

Centralian to be awarded honorary degree

07 September 2020

Charles Darwin University will honour former long-term central Australian staffer Peter Strachan with a posthumous honorary Master of Arts degree.

“Strachy” as he was known by friends and colleagues, was the Alice Springs campus based Remote Engagement Liaison Officer who in his own time had almost completed a research project into Indigenous employment in central Australia, when he died in 2019.

Supervisor, Northern Institute Professor Rolf Gerritsen said that Indigenous employment had been an issue close to Strachy’s heart for 40 years. “It bothered Strachy that non-government organisations would frequently recruit non-Aboriginal people with high-level formal qualifications in preference to quality local Aboriginal people with good knowledge, skills and networks but fewer formal qualifications,” Professor Gerritsen said. Read more....

Dr Kerstin Zander

The importance of climate to emigration intentions from a tropical city in Australia

04 September 2020

NI's Dr Kerstin Zander with RIEL's Professor Stephen Garnett have just published a new research paper that shows (from a local Darwin mail survey) that HEAT is the major driver of people migrating down south. Also that Darwin (and other cities) need to adopt climate smart policies to help their inhabitants to cope with a hotter environment in order to keep their populations. Full publication HERE.

Dr Anne Lowell and Dr Elaine Läwurrpa Maypilama

Research grant to support Indigenous early education

1 September 2020

A project led by Charles Darwin University that aims to build on the strong cultural foundation of young Indigenous children as they move into early education has received an Australian Government Indigenous Research Exchange grant of almost $200,000. The project “Understanding pathways to support Yolŋu children and families to achieve strong learning in two systems” is a collaboration between Indigenous communities, and educational and research partners. Associate Professor at CDU’s Northern Institute Elaine Läwurrpa Maypilama said the aim of the project was for Yolŋu (North-Eastern Arnhem Aboriginal) families, educators and researchers to work together to address community priorities. 

Principal Research Fellow  at the Northern Institute Associate Professor Anne Lowell said the project would build on extensive recent research, and consultations to facilitate more effective engagement between non-Indigenous and Indigenous people to identify sustainable systems and processes for knowledge exchange and application. CDU Newsroom Story

Prof Rolf Gerritsen

Labor likely to hold office in the Territory, but may find itself inheriting a terrible mess

23 August 2020

An Article by Northern Institue researcher Professor Rolf Gerritsen.

Read the full article here:


Michael Hartwig

Bush voters desert democracy due to years of broken promises expert says as NTEC warns turnout remains poor

21 August 2020

ABORIGINAL Territorians in remote communities have disengaged from the democratic process because of decades of broken promises and “window dressing” commitments from politicians, a Charles Darwin University academic has said. Read the full article here.


Dr Tracy Woodroff

NI Research explores alternative approach to Indigenous education

18 August 2020

Dr Tracy Woodroffe talks to Mel Little of Territory FM (104.1) about her research that suggests a cultural shift is required to improve educational outcomes for Indigenous students PLUS how Indigenous educators are so key to Indigenous students being successful in the education system. Tracy also touches on the INSPIRElab at CDU and how it allows Indigenous lecturers/researchers to engage in the higher education and research space on their own terms in a culturally safe environment.

Hear the interview with Mel.

Dr Linda Ford

Celebrating and Presenting Indigenous Ceremonies

17 August 2020

NEW! The ARC 'Making a Difference' online research publication has been released and includes the research of NI's Associate Professor Linda Ford - scroll to page 58

View online:

What is birthing on country and why is it crucial for Aboriginal women?

What is birthing on country and why is it crucial for Aboriginal women?

12 August 2020

NI researcher Associate Professor Elaine Lawurrpa Maypilama says there are many cultural barriers women face when travelling to the mainland to have their babies off country.

“English is not their first language and it is sometimes their fifth language. I just want to talk about how difficult and how hard it is for young people when they go to a hospital, like in Darwin or Nhulunbuy.

“It is hard for them when the nurse or midwife talk to them and it’s hard for them to understand the language the midwives use and we are trying to develop a program on country for Yolngu doula and Yolngu midwife on country.”

Auntie Lawurrpa Maypilama has done extensive research on the need for locally-based services tailored for Aboriginal mothers and incorporating local traditions in it. She says this can provide an extremely positive experience for women of Galiwinku. Read the article here

Associate Professor Elaine Lawurrpa Maypilama and Dr Sarah Ireland

What is birthing on country and why is it crucial for Aboriginal women?

12 August 2020

NI researcher Associate Professor Elaine Lawurrpa Maypilama says there are many cultural barriers women face when travelling to the mainland to have their babies off country.

“English is not their first language and it is sometimes their fifth language. I just want to talk about how difficult and how hard it is for young people when they go to a hospital, like in Darwin or Nhulunbuy. “It is hard for them when the nurse or midwife talk to them and it’s hard for them to understand the language the midwives use and we are trying to develop a program on country for Yolngu doula and Yolngu midwife on country.”

Auntie Lawurrpa Maypilama has done extensive research on the need for locally-based services tailored for Aboriginal mothers and incorporating local traditions in it. She says this can provide an extremely positive experience for women of Galiwinku. Link to the Article

Tracy Woodroffe

Research explores alternative approach to Indigenous education

12 August 2020

Research by the Northern Institute at Charles Darwin University’s Dr Tracy Woodroffe suggests a cultural shift is required to improve educational outcomes for Indigenous students. The research published in AlterNative: An International Journal of Indigenous Peoples explores enhanced Indigenous student outcomes through improved teacher education. 

An experienced Indigenous educator, Dr Woodroffe believes the strategies required relate to the need for a cultural shift within the current Australian education system. She describes an alternative approach to improving Indigenous student outcomes, expressed through the views of Indigenous educators. “The research demonstrates how connections between Westernised education systems and knowledge of Indigenous educators provide a locus of potential for the improved educational outcomes of Indigenous students,” Dr Woodroffe said. CDU Newsroom Story  

Post-study work right article by George Tan 7 LyTran

Post-study work rights the key to attracting international students

30 July 2020

Campus Review article authored by NI Demography researcher Dr George Tan and Professor Ly Tran of Deakin University.

Read it here:

George Tan

Australia’s graduate work visa scheme attracts international students to our universities. Is it enough?

30 July 2020

The Australian government recently announced it will resume granting visas to international students in a move to push forward with international education. This means when borders reopen, many students will already have visas to come to Australia. Read more

This article is authored by our new Demography researcher Dr George Tan and Professor Ly Tran of Deakin University.

Deepika Mathur - Solar panel article

Researcher highlights Outback solar panel threat

21 July 2020

A Charles Darwin University (CDU) researcher in Alice Springs has warned that urgent action needs to be taken to minimise the environmental threat posed by thousands of photovoltaic (PV) solar panels that will be decommissioned in the next few years.

CDU’s Northern Institute Research Fellow Dr Deepika Mathur said the “End-of-Life Management of Solar PV Panels” project was the first attempt to address the waste management issue in remote Australia, where vast distances and the absence of economies of scale added complexity to finding solutions.

“There’s a perception that everything made can be recycled, but it’s just not that easy. Solar panels were not made to be unmade,” Dr Mathur said. CDU Newsroom Article

Joy Bulkanhawuy and Brenda Muthamuluwuy

Yolŋu short courses to teach Matha (language) and Rom (culture)

16 July 2020

People wishing to learn or expand their knowledge of the north-east Arnhem Land language of Yolŋu can now enrol in a series of short courses at Charles Darwin University.

The six-week micro-credential course is offered at an introductory or intermediate level.

Students will have the opportunity to explore Yolŋu language and culture under the guidance and supervision of Yolŋu elders and lecturers Brenda Muthamuluwuy and Joy Bulkanhawuy, who are from Galiwinku. For more information and postgraduate courses on offer, visit HERE

Aspro Kerstin Zander

Charles Darwin University researchers have contributed to an international call for 30% of the planet to be protected to address the alarming collapse of the natural world.

Professor Stephen Garnett and Associate Professor Kerstin Zander have lent their voices and research to a huge collective effort to inform the most comprehensive report to date on the economic implications of protecting nature.

The report, which brought together more than 100 economists and scientists, found that the global economy would benefit from the establishment of far more protected areas on land and at sea than exist today. Read the full story

Andrew Taylor Radio Interview

Has the NT population increased by 4000 since March?

15 July 2020

Our Demography expert Associate Professor Andrew Taylor talks to Rick Hind on ABC Darwin radio (105.7) about who is coming into the Territory & who is leaving. Listen here:  

NI researcher Dr Rachel GroomRadio Interview with NI researcher Dr Rachel Groom

08 July 2020

NI researcher Dr Rachel Groom (top left) talks to Rebecca McLaren on ABC Darwin radio 'Drivetime' about the tricky business of dugong research in the Territory with the li-Anthawirriyarra Rangers.

Listen here (9 mins - scroll to 1:38:30)

New Publication Kerstin Zander and Nanda BudhathokiHeat, cold, and floods: exploring farmers’ motivations to adapt to extreme weather events in the Terai region of Nepal. Nat Hazards (2020)

08 July 2020

An article by Nanda Kaji Budhathoki (PhD student, Northern Institute, CDU), Douglas Paton (CDU)
Jonatan A. Lassa (CDU), Gopal Datt Bhatta (Research and Reporting Unit, The City of Calgary, Alberta, Canada), & Kerstin K. Zander (Northern Institute, CDU).

Read the paper:

About Nanda -
About Kirsten -

AU 0:02 / 14:25 li-Maramaranja - Dugong Hunters of Excellence

li-Maramaranja - Dugong Hunters of Excellence

01 July 2020

"There's crocs, there's sharks, there's jellies" come dugong wranging with the li-Anthawirriyarra rangers (14.25mins)

Yanyuwa Sea Country is the dugong capital of the Northern Territory. This short film shows (Youtube Link) Northern Institute researcher, Dr Rachel Groom working with the li-Anthawirriyarra rangers to learn more about dugong movements and improve our understanding of population estimates in the Gulf of Carpentaria. Dugongs are of deep cultural significance to many Indigenous peoples across northern Australia and have a high biodiversity value as the only herbivorous marine mammal on the planet. The project uses a both-ways knowledge approach to Sea Country management, where Traditional Ecological Knowledges and Western sciences integrate to provide a robust foundation for the management of our Territory coast.

Rachel will be talking with ABC Radio Darwin this afternoon on Drivetime about her experience working with the li-Anthawirriyarra rangers tagging dugongs.

Link to listen live here

Jo Funk on Youtube

Open for Whom? OEP with North Australian Indigenous Workforce Development

01 July 2020

Recorded webinar of NI's Jo Funk presenting to the Global OER Graduate Network about her PhD research which examined four online resources in multidisciplinary contexts and how they performed as open education practices (OEP). The focus of this study is therefore to examine to whom OEP are open. Link to Youtube

Dr Tracy WoodroffeImproving Indigenous student outcomes through improved teacher education: the views of Indigenous educators

21 June 2020

CIFAS Lecturer - Indigenous Knowledges, Dr Tracy Woodroffe has just published “Improving Indigenous student outcomes through improved teacher education: the views of Indigenous educators” in 'AlterNative: An International Journal of Indigenous Peoples.' 

Read Tracy's article:

Read more about Tracy Woodroffe

Yolŋu Researchers

Caring for Yolŋu and ways of life during COVID 19

12 June 2020

BIG CONGRATS! to Yolŋu researchers Gawura Waṉambi, Joy Bulkanhawuy, Stephen Dhamarrandji & Rosemary Gundjarranbuy who wrote this article for @IndigenousX sharing a Yolŋu community perspective around the response to COVID19. Excellent work! Read the article:

Dr Andrew Taylor

NT Votes: Experts say overseas migrants are 'critical' to the Territory's population growth

11 June 2020

Northern Institute demographer Dr Andrew Taylor said the NT was going through an "era" of low population growth, caused by net interstate migration losses.

Read the full article HERE

Dr Penelope Bergen

Outback isolation study may contain celestial insights

9 June 2020

Humanity’s quest to settle Mars may find insight in a new Charles Darwin University study that explores how government workers adapted to life in isolated Outback Territory settlements. The study by Northern Institute PhD student and former Central Australian journalist Dr Penelope Bergen examined the lives of several non-Aboriginal workers who lived and worked in communities implementing government policy throughout the Red Centre in the 1960s and early 1970s.

“Examining how they adapted to their isolated circumstances was part of my research to understand the complexities in the development of the culture of this group of remote workers,” Dr Bergen said. Full Story

Land Use PolicyCongratulations to NI PhD student and Geographer Dávid Karácsonyi

08 June 2020

NI PhD student and Geographer Dávid Karácsonyi has recently co-authored (with colleagues from China) the article 'Spatio-temporal pattern and driving forces of construction land change in a poverty-stricken county of China and implications for poverty-alleviation-oriented land use policies' in the Q1 ranked Land Use Policy Journal, Volume 91 (Elsevier).

Read the article -…/artic…/pii/S0264837719302431#!

Read about David -…/david-karacsonyi


Dr Thi Tam Duong

Room for biosecurity improvements in farmers’ fields

4 June 2020

A new study into the perceptions of Vietnamese farmers towards biosecurity threats in Australia has found that more work needs to be done to improve channels of communication, and to build greater levels of trust with industry and government.

Dr Thi Tam Duong, who has just completed a PhD at Charles Darwin University through the Northern Institute, said that most Vietnamese farmers had a good understanding of biosecurity risks and were motivated to react before and during threats to crops, but the data showed there was scope for improvement. Read more....

Friday essay

Friday essay: voices from the bush – how lockdown affects remote Indigenous communities differently — The Conversation

15 May 2020

Congrats to Dr Kellie Pollard as co-author of this article in today’s The Conversation. The article focuses on the NT Aboriginal communities of Barunga, Beswick, Manyallaluk and Borroloola and the impacts of COVID-19 they face.

"Friday essay: voices from the bush – how lockdown affects remote Indigenous communities differently"

Kellie is a Wiradjuri archaeologist, a research lecturer with CDU and works with Northern Institute researchers.

Free VET Courses

CDU offers free VET short courses to Territorians

15 May 2020

Territorians now have access to a range of free short courses to help them emerge from the COVID-19 outbreak with new skills, thanks to the partnership between Charles Darwin University and the Northern Territory Government.

The suite of CDU Vocational Education and Training (VET) short courses in the areas of hospitality, health, education, environmental studies, trades, business, finance and disaster management aim to help people boost their skills to prepare for the changing job market. More details here

Dr Ridwanul Hoque

New research paper by Dr. Ridwanul Hoque

06 May 2020

‘Bangladesh’s Unofficial Emergency: Managing the COVID-19 Crisis by Notifications’

Ridwanul Hoque is Professor of Law at the University of Dhaka, Bangladesh. He is currently a University Professorial Fellow at Northern Institute, The College of Indigenous Futures, Arts and Society, Charles Darwin University, Australia. 

Read the paper: 

Learn more about Dr. Ridwanul Hoque:

PhD candidate Janet Skewes

Flexible jobs model advances work hopes in outback

05 May 2020

A Charles Darwin University study has confirmed that a unique training and employment model used in outback Australia has important implications for the design of workplace programs in Indigenous communities.

Northern Institute PhD candidate Janet Skewes has spent the past four years analysing the structure and features of an employment model in the remote Anangu Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara (APY) Lands.“The research shows that this employment model, which differs significantly from standard human capital approaches seen in most mainstream workplaces, has proven quite successful,” Ms Skewes said. Link to E-news story

Professor Ruth Wallace is on the board of the Sir Roland Wilson Foundation

CDU cements ties with scholar Foundation

05 May 2020

College of Indigenous Futures, Arts and Society Dean Professor Ruth Wallace has been named on the board of the Sir Roland Wilson Foundation. The appointment comes after Professor Wallace’s long involvement sharing her academic experience with the Foundation and cements its connection with Charles Darwin University.

Professor Wallace is also the Director of CDU’s Northern Institute. Her research centres on making social policy adaptive to the strengths and knowledge systems of marginalised people, with a focus on learning and workforce development pathways in regional and remote areas. Professor Wallace supervises a number of Sir Roland Wilson Foundation scholars studying at CDU. Read more...

ANZAC Day Odes in 3 Aboriginal Languages

ANZAC Day Odes in 3 Aboriginal Languages

24 April 2020

Warrimirri - Dr Kathy Guthadjaka (Northern Institute, CDU)
Marrithiyel - Associate Professor Linda Payi Ford (Northern Institute, CDU)
Nyungar - Professor Len Collard (University of Western Australia)

Lest we forget.

STEM project

Call for inspiring STEM videos

As part of National Science Week local artists have the opportunity to express their creativity, while educating students and the community on the importance of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics).

The 2020 Science Week online community grants will provide $250 for artists and STEM professionals to create inspiring learning material for Territorians to access online.

CDU Science Outreach Manager Dr Carla Eisemberg said all STEM related topics would be considered, from the comedy of chemistry to the poetry of physics, science story-time, paper folding, musical math and everything in between.

Applications for the 2020 Science Week online community grants close on 19 May 2020. For more information visit the Inspired NT website:

Read Full story Here

Happy Earth Day

Happy Earth Day

22 April 2020

The CDU EnviroCollective, has put together a wonderful way to do our bit helping Earth with a fun Bingo - totally Territory Style!

Shhhh here's a hint for the last row, 3rd box in - visit the @djulburr instagram (created by NI researcher Emily Ford) to learn the Marranunggu word for Magpie Goose

Link to the FB post

Dont panic seminars

Webcast to focus on Indigenous perspectives of COVID-19

22 April 2020

The Northern Institute at Charles Darwin University will host its final Don’t Panic webcast this week, focusing on emergency management from an Indigenous perspective.

CDU Post-Doctoral Researcher Dr Michaela Spencer said the online presentation would include Indigenous experiences of disasters and stories relating to COVID-19 and its impacts in East Arnhem Land. Read More

For more information or to tune into Thursday’s webcast at 10.30am, visit

Learning Abroad with CDU Webinar (April)

Study abroad with CDU17 April 2020

CDU’s Learning Abroad team is ready to help find the best overseas program to suit you and get you planning for an academic adventure in 2021.

Join the CDU Global Team for their monthly webinars held on the last Tuesday of every month from 5.00-6.00pm ACST to discuss upcoming Learning Abroad Opportunities for 2021.

Study overseas as part of your CDU degree. Taking part in a Semester Abroad or Short Term Program as part of your CDU degree is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that will help enhance your education and life experience while preparing you for a rewarding global career once you graduate.

Register Here

More details about Learning Abroad: Global opportunities

Prof Ruth Wallace

Changes to Sir Roland Wilson Foundation Board

16 April 2020

We’re proud to announce Charles Darwin University Professor Ruth Wallace has been appointed a member of the SRW Foundation board. Ruth has a long connection with the Foundation, particularly with the Pat Turner Scholarship. Read more

Are populist leaders a liability during COVID-19?

08 April 2020

Congratulations to CIFAS Senior Lecturer - Emergency & Disaster Management, Dr. Jonatan Lassa and Lecturer in Humanitarian, Emergency and Disaster Management Studies, Ms. Miranda Booth whose article was published on The Conversation. Read the full article HERE

Cathy Bow

Radio Interview with NI researcher and PhD student, Cathy Bow

03 April 2020

NI researcher and PhD student, Cathy Bow, recently spoke to Annie Brown from the ABC Darwin Radio Afternoon show for their "how to" series (targeted for people at home self-isolating) on how to learn another language & where and how can people start learning from home.

You can listen to the interview at scroll to 30:00mins

Stephen Schwer

Researcher seeks solution to tourism quandary

30 March 2020

A Charles Darwin University researcher living in the quintessential Outback town Birdsville has begun a tourism research project that could have global consequences.

Northern Institute Masters by research student Stephen Schwer said he hoped to identify a best practice funding model to sustain regional Destination Management Organisations (DMOs), the bodies that promote a location’s tourism assets.

“The overarching question is: can regional Australia’s not-for-profit Destination Management Organisations self-determine their financial sustainability?” Mr Schwer said.

“If I can establish a better way – a financially viable funding model – then we may well have something that could be applied globally as well as in Australia.”

With some 20 years’ experience in the regional tourism sector, Mr Schwer is well placed to undertake the research. He was the Chief Executive Officer of Tourism Central Australia for four years until last month. He is now the Manager Community Sustainability with the Diamantina Shire Council on the edge of the Simpson Desert. Read more...

dont panic

Webcast series to build community resilience amid pandemic

25 March 2020

A free webcast series focusing on disaster, emergency management and community resilience will be run by Charles Darwin University’s Northern Institute starting this week.

The webcast series, named “Don’t Panic”, will draw on the Northern Institute’s research expertise to provide useful facts and perspectives from experts in the emergency management, risk and resilience, mitigation, response and recovery fields.

Director of the Northern Institute and Dean of the College of Indigenous Futures, Arts and Society, Professor Ruth Wallace said the webcast series would deliver relevant and accessible information to community members amid the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read More....

The webcasts will be held weekly, starting on Thursday, 26 March from 10.30am to 11.30am (ACDT).

To find out more visit W: or follow the Northern institute on Facebook

IWD 2020

NI Celebrates 10 years of International Women's Day 2020

12 March 2020

Over 75 guests gathered at CDU campus March 6 for Northern Institute’s annual International Women’s Day event last week. Now in its 10th year Northern Institute (NI) celebrated #IWD2020 with a Friday after work event titled ‘Hurdles’.

NI Director and Dean of the College of Indigenous Futures, Arts & Society Professor Ruth Wallace MC'd and CDU’s Indigenous Academic in Residence Bilawara Lee a long-time supporter of our annual event provided the Welcome to Country.

Speakers were prominent Territory women including Co-Chair of the National Indigenous Co-design Group and CEO of Aboriginal Broadcasting Australia Dr Donna Odegaard AM, the first female member of the Northern Territory Bar Sally Gearin and NT Local Hero nominee Helen Summers sharing their personal stories of the hurdles they’ve overcome to achieve equality. 

Guests were treated to local singer Melanie Gray performing her original song ‘My Bets on Love’ with a back-up of young inspiring singers including Stella Foster, Aarika Gurung, Amelia Kadiba, Molly & Tessa Harragon. 

Our colleague Sylvia Klonaris represented the NTEU Women’s Action Committee (WAC) display and was on hand to answer questions on matters that affect women in higher education. 

This year’s International Women's Day theme was #EachforEqual. Each year the money raised from the gold coin donation entry goes to a worthy cause - this year NI collected for Australian Wildlife and Nature Recovery Fund (WWF - Australia) to care for wildlife injured in recent bushfires around Australia. Money was also raised from selling Gingerbread Women specially made by local baker Kurt from Kurt’s Cakes for International Women’s Day. If you didn’t get a chance to donate on the day you can donate directly to the fund online HERE.

On behalf of Northern Institute we wish to say thank you and Happy International Women’s day to all who attended and supported our event. We encourage everyone to please keep your #IWD2020 pledge to help forge a gender equal world in 2020. 

If you’d like to view the event pics please visit our Facebook album HERE.

Photo acknowledgement Charles Darwin University.

NT Rural woman of the year

Northern Territory’s Rural Woman of the Year named

11 March 2020

Meet three women, Amy Kirke, Maddison Clonan and Emily Ford, who epitomise the rich depth of talent and dedication we have in the Territory’s rural sector. Each are winners in their own right for their achievements on behalf of women from the Territory’s rural communities and industries.

Ms Ford is a proud Rak Mak Mak Marranunggu woman from Kurrindju. She is facilitating the development of emerging workforces through a communication program, sharing knowledge about industries from a range of relevant experts. Read the full story

The Northern Institute's International Women's Day event

NI marks 10 years celebrating International Women’s Day

02 March 2020

Inspirational Territory women will share stories of overcoming the odds when they gather for the Northern Institute’s International Women’s Day (IWD) event at Casuarina campus on 6 March.

Featuring a diverse panel of guest speakers, this year’s event also celebrates the 10th anniversary of the Northern Institute’s International Women’s Day annual event.

Those attending can expect to hear from prominent Territory women, including Co-Chair of the National Indigenous Co-design Group and CEO of Aboriginal Broadcasting Australia Dr Donna Odegard AM, the first female member of the Northern Territory Bar Sally Gearin and NT Local Hero nominee Helen Summers.

Director of the Northern Institute and Dean of the College of Indigenous Futures, Arts and Society, Professor Ruth Wallace, said the theme for this year’s IWD is Each for Equal, which aims to challenge stereotypes, fight bias, broaden perceptions, and celebrate women's achievements. For more information or to registe

Emily Ford is Darwin Young Citizen of the Year for 2020

Researcher takes out top Australia Day award

02 March 2020

Research assistant Emily Ford was recognised as Darwin's Young Citizen of the Year 2020 at an awards ceremony on Australia Day.

Emily is a Rak Mak Mak Marranunggu woman and a Darwin local. She works in CDU’s Northern Institute in the research field, with a focus on Indigenous knowledge, education, ethnomusicology, history, languages, and plant biosecurity.

She has worked on multiple projects in these fields, two of which were Australian Research Council Discovery Indigenous projects led by Chief Investigators Associate Professor Linda Paiyi Ford and Dr Kathy Guthadjaka. Read more...

Professor Ruth Wallace is committed to providing on-country support for Yolŋu students

CDU to support ALPA study hubs

02 March 2020

Arnhem Land Progress Aboriginal Corporation (ALPA) and CDU have teamed up to provide on-country support for two new study hubs in Nhulunbuy and Galiwin’ku.

The hubs are part of a national rollout by the Australian Government, which aims to increase tertiary education qualifications in remote and regional locations.

Dean of the College of Indigenous Futures, Arts and Society Professor Ruth Wallace and Executive Director of Reconciliation at Swinburne University Professor Andrew Gunston have offered ongoing support for the initiative.

Professor Wallace said Yolŋu people had wanted for a long time to lead in all areas across their communities.

“This requires qualifications, vocation and accreditation, and that’s very hard to achieve when you live in a remote area with technological challenges,” Professor Wallace said. Continue reading

Political Science PhD candidate Michael Hartwig

Research focuses on remote voting behaviour

02 March 2020

A retired accountant undertaking PhD research at Charles Darwin University in Alice Springs will be paying closer attention than most to the upcoming Northern Territory election.

Northern Institute political scientist Michael Hartwig is examining what motivates Indigenous people in remote electorates to vote the way they do.

Mr Hartwig said he was focussing on the electorates of Arafura, Arnhem, Barkly, Daly, Gwoja (formerly Stuart), Mulka (formerly Nhulunbuy) and Namatjira.

“Five of these seven seats changed hands at the 2012 Territory election after shunning the CLP for over 30 years. However, the flirtation lasted only four years until the 2016 election. Why was it that they voted one way in 2012 and another in 2016?” READ MORE.....

Cathy Bow

CDU hosts Indigenous languages intensive

02 March 2020

Sixteen Indigenous language workers from across the country gathered at CDU recently for a week-long intensive course in “Linguistics for Indigenous languages”.

It is the second time CDU has offered the course in Darwin, which aims to train Indigenous language workers in linguistic principles, assisting language speakers and teachers to maintain and revitalise their Indigenous languages.

Convenor of the Australian Indigenous Languages Institute, Cathy Bow said the course delivered important skills and training for highly experienced, as well as up-and-coming language workers.

“In the past, linguistics work has largely been done by non-Indigenous linguists, so it’s significant that these language workers are taking back control of their languages for their own purposes,” Ms Bow said. FULL STORY HERE

PhD candidate Rifka Sibarani

Researcher examines value of social media in a crisis

02 March 2020

A Charles Darwin University researcher will analyse social media’s fake bushfire map phenomenon as part of a PhD investigation into the effects of disaster communication on human behaviour in rural areas.

PhD candidate Rifka Sibarani said she hoped her research into risk communication in rural communities in the age of social media would improve communication between rural communities and disaster management agencies.

“People get their information online nowadays,” Ms Sibarani said.

“I’m particularly interested in how rural communities survive in times of a crisis, especially when the crisis doesn’t happen regularly.” Full Story

IWD 2020 PosterCelebrating International Women's Day!

18 February 2020

This is our 10th year recognising International Women’s Day (IWD) so grab a friend, enjoy a drink and delicious refreshments, listen to some amazing stories and celebrate with Northern Institute.

WHEN: Friday 6 March, 4.30pm - 6.00pm  
Mal Nairn Foyer, CDU Casuarina campus (Red 7 - View map)

Help us spread the word FacebookTwitter & Instagram or download our poster to put up around your workplace.

Indigenous graduates celebrate recognition of research skills

Indigenous graduates celebrate recognition of research skills

13 February 2020

Indigenous researchers working on country are having their specialist knowledge recognised by a new credentialing system offered through CDU.

The Northern Institute is delivering three credentials for Indigenous people working in community-based research and has celebrated its first two graduates of the program: Stephen Dhamarrandji and Emmanuel Yunupiŋu. For Stephen, an Elcho Island resident and Djambarrpuyŋu man, achieving the Indigenous Community-based Researcher badge is more than a qualification, it’s recognition of his in-depth knowledge of country, culture and community.

Fellow graduate Emmanuel Yunupiŋu achieved his micro-credentialing badge after working as a co-researcher with the Northern Institute’s Dr Michaela Spencer on a monitoring and evaluation project for the Northern Land Council’s Community Planning and Development program. Read the full story here

Research head looks to the stars to grow partnershipsDr Steve Rogers

12 February 2020

Charles Darwin University has welcomed the new Director of Research and Innovation Dr Steve Rogers, who brings with him research and high-level leadership experience in the environment sector, mining exploration and mineral processing industries.

Dr Rogers comes to CDU from the position of CEO at the Centre for Appropriate Technology Ltd (CfAT Ltd), an Aboriginal-controlled, not-for-profit technology and infrastructure solutions company based in Alice Springs, operating across rural and remote Australia.

“CDU has established itself as a progressive research-intensive university with a regional focus that prioritises the complex issues facing Northern Australia and the Asia-Pacific,” Dr Rogers said. Read more...

Sub citizenship pyramid

Congrats to former student and now Honorary Daile Rung!

14 January 2020

for her article published in the Social Sciences journal for a Special Issue called Reshaping the World: Rethinking Borders. Her paper called 'Processes of Sub-Citizenship: Neoliberal Statecrafting ‘Citizens,’ ‘Non-Citizens,’ and Detainable ‘Others’' explores how the processes of sub-citizenship occur as nation-states craft immigration, citizenship, and border securitization policies and practices. Daile draws upon recent high-profile cases of family separation, abuse, and neglect experienced by children with ‘illegal migrant’ status in the United States and Australia.

The article is OPEN ACCESS and free to read here:

2019 Long Service Awards

2019 VC's Awards for Long Service Recognitions

12 December 2019

Congratulations and THANK YOU to our long service award recipients for your commitment and contribution to CDU particularly in the field of research, over many years:

  • Alicia Boyle - 20 Year Award
  • Professor Michael Christie - 25 Year Award

VC's Awards

2019 VC's Awards for Exceptional Performance

12 December 2019

Winner of the 2019 Vice-Chancellor’s Award for Emerging Researcher

> NI PhD graduate Dr Tracy Woodroffe Nominee 2019 VC Award for Exceptional Performance in Research & VC Honourable Mention
> The Growing Up Yolŋu Team incl. Associate Professor Anne Lowell, Associate Professor Elaine (Läwurrpa) Maypilama & Emily Armstrong.

Nominee for the 2019 Vice-Chancellor’s Award for Exceptional Performance in Research
> Dr Deepika Mathur Nominee 2019 VC Award for Exceptional Performance in Research & VC Honourable Mention
> The NESP Threatened Species Team incl. NI’s Associate Professor Kerstin Zander.

Thank you to Pascal and Michael for accepting the awards for researchers that couldn't attend the ceremony. Facebook Post Link

Dr Kate Golebiowska

2019 CDU Academic Staff Promotions

11 Decemeber 2019

BIG Congratulations to researcher Dr Kate Golebiowska on being awarded an Academic Promotion.

Aspro Kerstin Zander

Solar Panel Adoption Survey

10 December 2019

Northern Institute’s Professor Kerstin Zander talked to Lyrella Cousins at ABC Radio Darwin's Afternoon show about the NT being the slowest uptake of solar energy in Australia despite being one of the sunniest places in the world. Kerstin is currently running a Solar Panel Adoption Survey to look at the barriers for people to invest in solar and how the government may help them.

Listen to the interview HERE - go to 7.40min


Dr Deepika Mathur

Grant gives life to zero-waste building idea

02 December 2019

Staff at CDU who shared a vision for a zero-waste construction site have won a $50,000 grant to advance the project. Northern Institute Senior Research Fellow Dr Deepika Mathur and School of Trades Lecturer Mark Fudge are the brains behind the initiative, which harbours the potential to reform an industry that is responsible for more than 30% of waste sent to landfill. They plan to develop the concept at a building site in Alice Springs, where construction is scheduled to start early next year.

The Northern Territory Government’s Department of Environment and Natural Resources has provided the funding through the Environment Project Grants initiative. Read more....

The RIEL tropical turtle research group

Turtle team wins NT award

02 December 2019

Here's a story about the RIEL Tropical Turtle Research Group, including NI researcher Associate Professor Linda Ford, that has recently taken home an NT Natural Resource Management Award. Read the full story

Yasunori Hayashi

Brevity the key to understanding Yolngu culture

02 December 2019

CDU is helping Top End doctors and nurses improve their understanding of Yolngu language and culture with a series of short workshops at Royal Darwin Hospital. Indigenous Knowledges Lecturer Yasunori Hayashi said the weekly workshops were just 10 minutes in duration.

“Ten minutes may not sound like much time to unpack the vastness of Yolngu Aboriginal knowledge, yet we find that by administering things in small doses and in the right manner is highly effective,” Mr Hayashi said. Read more.....

Prof Ruth WalllaceOur North, Our Future Video

29 November 2019

The north has always been a great place to live and do business. It’s contribution to Australia’s prosperity continues to grow. This video shows how we are progressing the northern agenda and growing a stronger north. Watch Here

Professor Ruth Wallace stars at 2:05

Indigenous Languages and Health Communication Symposium, 21 NovIndigenous Languages and Health Communication Symposium

29 November 2019

Approximately 150 health staff, interpreters, researchers, leaders and policy makers met last week at The Indigenous Languages and Health Communication Symposium held at the JMB auditorium (Royal Darwin Hospital). Participants shared their projects, initiatives, hurdles, plans and strategies for improving health communication for speakers of Indigenous languages.

This was a joint initiative of Menzies School of Health Research, the NT Aboriginal Interpreter Service and Northern Institute. Stay tuned for more events, partnerships and collaborations next year as we plan to expand the discussion of sustainable change across the NT and Northern Australia. Photos by Courtney Wilson, Menzies School of Health Research. View more photos

Yolŋu Studies Centre Four Half-Days Intensive Course

Yolŋu Studies Four Half-Days Intensive Course

27 November 2019

In the beginning of December, CDU Yolŋu Studies Centre will be running a Four Half-Days Intensive Course at Casuarina campus in Darwin. You will learn the introductory-level of Yolŋu gurruṯu and Gupapuyŋu Dhuwala language with two Yolŋu lectures from Galiwin'ku.

More information and registration

You will receive a micro credential (digital badge) upon the completion of this intensive course

NI CIFAS Stakeholder breakfast

NI CIFAS Stakeholder Stand-Up Breakfast

26 November 2019

Our Stakeholder Stand-Up Breakfast was held this morning at the Northern Australia Development Offices (NADO) in Darwin city.

BIG THANK YOU to the staff of NADO (especially Kim & Krystle) + Renee & Stephen of Northern Territory Indigenous Business Network for ALL your support and helping make our event such an outstanding success! View more photos

Dr Kerstin Zander

Territorians urged to have their say in solar survey

21 November 2019

Charles Darwin University Northern Institute Associate Professor Dr Kerstin Zander wants to understand why one of the sunniest places on earth has such a low uptake of solar energy in Australia.

“We have the highest average electricity bills in the country, but the lowest take-up of solar energy,” Dr Zander said. “Right now, we are on a par with Tasmania with 18 per cent uptake of solar panels, compared to 30 per cent in Queensland and 25 per cent across Australia.”

For more information and to complete the survey visit HERE

Indigenous Diplomacy IntensiveCDU Yolŋu lecturers and elders present at ANU Treaty Forum

14 November 2019

Following the success of the Indigenous Diplomacy Intensive at ANU Canberra, CDU Yolŋu lecturers and elders are at ANU's Treaty Forum presenting on Yolŋu ways of TREATY making process, which emerges from their country of djalkiri (foundation).

Emmanuel Yunupiŋu and Michaela Spencer

Gapuwiyak Researcher Hopes to Inspire Others

13 November 2019

Emmanuel Yunupiŋu from Gapuwiyak in Arnhem Land is working as a co-researcher with Charles Darwin University’s Michaela Spencer on a monitoring project for the NLC’s Community Planning and Development (CP&D) Program. Emmanuel says he wants to be a co-researcher to be a role model for other young people and to show the importance of education.

Together Emmanuel and Michaela are checking in with Traditional Owners and asking questions about how their newly created company, Milindji Development, and their house painting crew projects are going.

These projects are being funded by the Traditional Owners using their own money from land use agreements, and delivered through the CD&P Program. View more photos

Indigenous Diplomacy CourseIndigenous Diplomacy Course

13 November 2019

Last week Yolŋu lecturers from CDU joined with Ngambri-Ngunnawal and Torres Strait Elders to deliver an intensive course on Indigenous Diplomacy at ANU (Canberra). The course is the first of its kind, with postgraduate students and diplomats from the Australian region and overseas sitting with Elders to learn about diplomatic practices embedded in places and kinship relations, as well as contemporary discussions around treaty, truth-telling and constitutional recognition.

For more information about the course contact NI researcher Dr Michaela Spencer at

View more photos HERE

Dr Sarah Ireland Medical AnthropologistDr Sarah Ireland talks about her work as a Medical Anthropologist in the remote region of Arnhem Land

12 November 2019

"Being a researcher in the Northern Territory of Australia is one of the most unique opportunities that I can think of, I get to swap the office for being on country”.

Northern Institute researcher Dr Sarah Ireland talks about her work as a Medical Anthropologist in the remote region of Arnhem Land. Her latest research project called "Caring for Mum on Country" looks at how Indigenous knowledge can be used to empower women to become "Doula", Indigenous childbirth companions.

Note the beautiful footage taken on country by Pat Josse. Watch the video here

Greater Darwin Area Solar Panel Adoption Survey

Greater Darwin Area Solar Panel Adoption Survey

11 November 2019

We're asking residents of the Greater Darwin Area to share opinions about rooftop solar panel installation. Your views are important as it can help drive policymaking as well as forecast the usage of the power grid.


This research is funded by the Northern Territory Government Renewable Energy Research and Development Grants Program and is being carried out by a team of researchers at the Northern Institute (CDU).

Outdoor construction workers fear changing climate

'Heat stress' causing people to leave

09 November 2019

The heat of the Top End's wet season build-up period is always a challenge for business owner George Alexopoulos and his workers. His workforce pours concrete slabs for new houses in Palmerston, 20 kilometres from Darwin's city centre, at dawn.

His family business has spanned two generations and Mr Alexopoulos is now concerned a changing climate could create more difficulty for his workers in an already demanding environment.

Darwin was the only Australian capital city that experienced a population decline in 2017-18 Australian Bureau of Statistics data released earlier this year. Charles Darwin University environmental economist Dr Kerstin Zander's research found heat stress was one reason people chose to leave. Dr Zander said workers who continued to go in and out of air conditioning suffered more than those who work permanently outside, because their bodies did not acclimatise. Full Article HERE


‘NT Indigenous Business Network Members Showcase’ hosted by Northern Institute

01 November 2019

As a proud Associate Member of the NT Indigenous Business Network (NTIBN), Northern Institue hosted the NTIBN Member Showcase on the 01 November 2019.

Thank you to everyone who visited NI today for the NTIBN Members Showcase - over 40 people attended, business cards were swapped, yarns were told, connections were made. We look forward to partnering on more events and projects with NTIBN and their members in the future! 

After the climb

After the climb: how new tourism opportunities can empower the traditional owners of Uluru

31 October 2019

Northern Institute’s Professor Barry Judd and Associate Professor Chris Hallinan are two of a team of academics who wrote this article for The Conversation about how an end to climbing Uluru brings new opportunities.

"After the climb: how new tourism opportunities can empower the traditional owners of Uluru"

Congratulations on the article, Barry & Chris!

Read more about Barry and his research HERE
Read more about Chris and his research HERE

Homeland event

Homelands and their future: A perspective from Bäniyala

27 October 2019

Mr Djambawa Marawili AM, and other leaders of the Djalkiripuyngu ('footprint people' from the homelands of Blue Mud Bay) have outlined their vision for homelands in the Blue Mud Bay (Djalkiripuyngu) Development Strategy and Homelands Statement.

Mr Marawili says: ‘In our homelands living on our ancestral Country, we are culturally rich with our inherited language, song, dance, patterns, stories and knowledge of the details of country, animals, seasons, weather patterns and the natural work. We are also materially poor, and our people have levels of serious illness, which are completely unacceptable in a rich country like Australia.

This event was held Thursday, 24 October 2019, 5.00pm – 6.30pm at Northern Institute. Over 50 people attended. This event is proudly hosted by Northern Institute in collaboration with the Arnhem, Northern and Kimberley Artists Aboriginal Corporation (ANKA).

More details and Photographs of the event can be viewed HERE

VIEW the ABC News report about the Homelands and their future

Dr Tracy Woodroffe

Call for Indigenous knowledge in teacher training

15 October 2019

A Charles Darwin University (CDU) PhD candidate has identified the need for teachers to receive specific pre-service training in Indigenous knowledge.

Lecturer in Indigenous Knowledges at CDU’s College of Indigenous Futures, Arts and Society, Dr Tracy Woodroffe said many new teachers did not know enough about Indigenous people and their culture.

“This goes back to what kids learn at school. The current curriculum doesn’t do a good job of building students’ knowledge about Indigenous history and a worse job at teaching Indigenous culture,” she said. Dr Woodroffe will receive her PhD at a CDU graduation ceremony on 18 October. Read more...

Simon Morris at the 10th Accounting History International Conference

NI PhD student presents research in Paris

10 October 2019

NI PhD student Simon Morris presented a paper at the 10th Accounting History International Conference” hosted by the Conservatoire National des Arts et Métiers (CNAM), University Paris-Dauphine/PSL in Paris on September 3 - 5, 2019.

His paper is entitled “One size fits all? How international agencies fail fragile states in the assessment of the sustainability and professionalism of accounting professions. Timor-Leste a case study.”

CNAM is a French doctoral degree-granting higher education establishment that was founded on 10 October 1794, during the French Revolution, exactly 225 years ago today on 10 October.

Simon also visited the CNAM library and attended the presentation of SUMMA de arithmetica, geometria, de proportioni et de proportionalita which was written by Luca Pacioli in 1494. This book contains 28 pages on double entry bookkeeping and participants were able to handle an original copy in their Reading Room.

Northern Institute, Associate Professor Linda (Payi) Ford

Researcher to deliver Eric Johnston Lecture

07 October 2019

Prominent researcher from CDU’s Northern Institute, Associate Professor Linda (Payi) Ford will present this year’s Eric Johnston Lecture on Wednesday 23 October at the Library and Archives NT.

The lecture is a flagship event hosted by Library and Archives NT that provides a platform for a significant Territorian to share their reflections and insights on the Territory’s past, present or future.

Dr Ford will also reflect on the influence Eric Johnston had on Indigenous education during his time as Chairperson of the then-Batchelor College. “I was teaching the next generation of teachers during Eric’s time at Batchelor and I will focus on his achievements during this time, many of which have stood the test of time,” Dr Ford said.

The 2019 Eric Johnston Lecture will be held at the Library and Archives NT, Parliament House, Darwin on Wednesday 23 October from 5:30pm - 7:30pm. Entry is free but bookings are essential. For more information visit W:
CDU Enews

CDU Innov8

CDU Innov8 connecting business with research and innovation

02 October 2019

Charles Darwin University’s (CDU) research will be showcased during October Business Month’s Innovation Week. Research into smart solutions to construction waste management to advances in DNA technology will feature at CDU’s Innov8 event at its Darwin Waterfront campus next Monday (7 October). Researchers from across the university’s research institutes and colleges will have eight minutes each to present on their work, which will showcase innovation ranging from new ways of thinking to new ways of doing. Read more....

Northern Institute have 2 researchers showcasing their work at CDU's annual Innov8 event next week:
AsPro Payi Linda Ford - Aboriginal Cosmology – What this means for women and gender policy?
Dr Deepika Mathur – Smart Skips: A solution towards constriction waste management

This year’s event will be held on Monday, 7 October at Level Five of CDU’s Waterfront Campus, from 5pm to 8pm.
Light refreshments and entertainment by the Darwin Symphony Orchestra will be provided.
As places are limited, people are encouraged to register early.
For more information about CDU Innov8, including the list of speakers and registration information, visit W:

Smart Skips project award

Smart Skips project wins national award

23 September 2019

The Smart Skips project developed by Charles Darwin University has been hailed for excellence at the Regional Development Conference where it has won the Innovation Award.

Project leader Dr Deepika Mathur, a Research Fellow with CDU’s Northern Institute, said the accolade was richly rewarding for her colleagues in the university’s higher education and VET sectors, as well as associates in industry and local government who had worked together to develop a solution for a real-world issue.

Dr Mathur said a smart skip was a commercial waste bin fitted with electronic sensors that transmit data about the volume and weight of the contents to the building supervisor and the skip operator. “The aim of the project is to improve efficiencies within the construction industry.” “I am most grateful to my colleagues Rolf Gerritsen, Bharani Shanmugam, Sami Azam, Danny Sneddon and Rohan Badenhop for bringing their expertise to the project and working as a team,” she said.

The project was funded by the Australian Government's Smart Cities and Suburbs Program to improve the liveability, productivity and sustainability of cities and towns across Australia. Full story here

Gavin Morris

Truth telling at Daly River

05 September 2019

A truth-telling project that captured the impacts of colonisation and traditional healing practices of the Nauiyu community at Daly River will be the subject of a major presentation at a research conference in Darwin tomorrow.

PhD candidate Gavin Morris and Adjunct Dr Miriam Rose Ungunmerr-Baumann (AO) will present on “Indigenous and non-Indigenous perspectives of researching in an Aboriginal community, challenges and opportunities” at Charles Darwin University’s (CDU) Higher Degree Research Conference.

The study was requested by the Nauiyu community and is the first time the Indigenous research methodology, known as Dadirri, has been used at home in Daly River. Read more....

Dr Don Zoellner

University Fellow accpts place on expert panel

03 September 2019

Charles Darwin University Fellow Dr Don Zoellner has been appointed to a national panel that will examine the skills and knowledge that young people need to thrive beyond school. The Alice Springs based VET policy academic with the Northern Institute is the only non-capital city appointee on the seven-strong Senior Secondary Pathways Review panel, which met for the first time in Sydney last month. Commissioned by the Council of Australian Government's (COAG) Education Council, panellists will look at whether existing arrangements are sufficient for students to make the best decisions for their future.

The Education Council accepts that today's senior secondary graduates need a different mix of skills than previous generations, including stronger problem solving, communication and digital skills, as well as the ability to think critically and creatively. Education Council Chair and Australian Government Minister for Education Dan Tehan said senior secondary education played an important role in preparing young people for life beyond school.

"The review will help ensure senior secondary schooling is supporting our young people to make informed choices, and that they're leaving school with the skills and knowledge they need to succeed," Mr Tehan said.

The panel, which brings together experts in school operations, industry, VET, university entry requirements, student engagement and wellbeing, and the delivery of secondary education to disadvantaged students, will report to the COAG Education Council in June next year.

Dr Sarah Ireland and Northern Institute Principal Research Fellow Elaine Lawurrpa Maypilama

Empowering midwives in the NT

02 September 2019

Excellence in midwifery took centre stage at the recent “Tips, Tricks and Tales” Midwifery Conference at Casuarina campus, organised by the Student Midwives in Darwin club.

One of the organisers, Ashlee Guerin said the students were excited to present an extraordinary mix of local and interstate speakers, who spoke on a wide range of topics.

“It was a rare opportunity in Darwin to hear from these professionals directly and we were all captivated,” she said. CDU E-news story

Aspro Linda Ford

CDU researcher to honour Charles Perkins

02 September 2019

One of CDU’s leading Aboriginal researchers has been chosen to present a prestigious oration named after Dr Charles Perkins AO, the first Aboriginal man in Australia to graduate from university and one of the country’s most influential figures of the late 20th century.

The University of Sydney’s Dr Charles Perkins AO Memorial Oration was established with the full support of the Perkins family and in acknowledgement of his dedication to human rights and social justice for Indigenous Australians.

Orators are chosen for their outstanding contributions made by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people for their community, country and society. Full news here

Guest lecturer at the HDR Conference Dr Hugh Kearns and PhD candidate Gavin Morris.

Conference to showcase CDU research

29 August 2019

Charles Darwin University’s (CDU) Higher Degree Research (HDR) will be under the microscope at the HDR Futures Conference on Casuarina campus next week (4-6 September). The event will champion a sustainable future and showcase some of the university’s finest minds.

The conference will also feature the work of PhD candidate Gavin Morris and Honorary Doctor and Adjunct Dr Miriam Rose Ungunmerr-Baumann, which explored Indigenous trauma and healing from a community perspective.

Mr Morris and Dr Rose investigated how traditional healing practices could be incorporated into mainstream health services to address intergenerational trauma at Nauiyu, about 220km southwest of Darwin. Read more.....

Dr Linda Ford, Chloe & Emily in PULiiMA 2019

NI Researchers share their research at PULiiMA 2019

23 August 2019

NI’s Principal Research Fellow, Aspro Linda Ford, Research Assistant Chloe Ford and Junior Research Assistant Emily Ford presented at the ''PULiiMA 2019 Indigenous Languages & Technology Conference” in Darwin on Thursday, 22 August 2019. Their presentation was called 'NT Mak Mak Marranunggu Languange Program”.

PULiiMA Indigenous Language and Technology Conference is a biennial event aimed at bringing people together from all over Australia and internationally to explore pioneering project ideas and exciting products and equipment that can be used in community based Indigenous languages projects. The conference allows people to network with an inspirational group of people who all share a common ambition of preserving and celebrating the languages of your country. Visit the conference website:

Nina Lawrence

New book from NI PhD student

21 August 2019

Northern Institute is delighted to announce that our PhD student Nina Lawrence has published a new book ‘Clever Crow’ (Magabala Books). This book has been nominated as finalists for 2019 International Book Awards (Children's Picture Book: Hardcover Fiction category)

One of the most notable features of the book is the Djambarrpuynu (a Yolnu language from North East Arnhem land) translation that is woven into the design. This is extended at the end of the book with a glossary of words and an orthography which gives tips for sounding out letters phonetically. The author, Nina is a descendant of the Gimuy Walubara Yidinji mob and is passionate about the preservation and promotion of Indigenous Australian languages. Find out more:

Congratulations Nina!

Dr Linda Ford & Honorary Dr Yih-Ren Lin

Dr Linda Ford hosted an afternoon visit from our international Honorary Dr Yih-Ren Lin from Taipei Medical University (TMU) today

14 August 2019

Dr Lin is the Director, Research Centre for Humanistic Innovation and Social Engagement at TMU. Dr Lin does research in Ecology, Ethnobotany and Geography and is an expert in Social and Cultural Anthropology. He was very interested to hear more about the Indigenous seasonal posters that Northern Institute has produced like our Gäwa Yolŋu and Mak Mak Marranunggu calendars (see pic).

Dr Lin also met with our researchers Professor Barry Judd and Dr Judy Lovell when he travelled to Alice Springs recently. He plans to come back to the NT in the future and hopes to further his research collaboratively with CDU.

Thank you to Dr Michelle Moss from the College of Health and Human Sciences for facilitating the visit with Dr Lin.

Governor Philip Lowe

Gäwa Yolŋu Seasonal poster is now framed and proudly hanging in Governor Philip Lowe's office

13 August 2019

Governor Philip Lowe of the Reserve Bank of Australia has sent us a photograph of our Gäwa Yolŋu Seasonal poster, a gift from Senior researcher Dr Kathy (Gotha) Guthadjaka AO from his visit to Darwin in July. Facebook photos HERE

You can find details on how to buy your own copy of the Gäwa seasonal poster here:

PPP Seminar - Dany & Melanie

PPP Seminar by Professor Dany Adone and Dr Melanie Brueck

08 August 2019

Thank you to NI Honorary Professor Dany Adone and Dr Melanie Brueck of University of Cologne (Germany) for once again taking the time to visit us and present on your incredibly valuable Indigenous Sign Language research work.

See seminar destail HERE

Batchelor writing retreat

Batchelor writing retreat

08 August 2019

What a successful writing retreat, recently held in Batchelor, looks like - to read all about it visit HERE

This writing retreat was proudly supported by Northern Institute.

Conference to showcase CDU researchConference to showcase CDU research

06 August 2019

CDU’s Higher Degree Research (HDR) will be under the microscope at the HDR Futures Conference on Casuarina campus early next month. The event, on 4-6 September, will champion a sustainable future and showcase some of the university’s finest minds.

Some 80 HDR students will present their research to around 150 peers, academics and industry partners. The conference will showcase the extraordinary contribution made by PhD candidates to Australia and the Asia-Pacific region and provide capacity-building and training opportunities for HDR students.

The conference will also feature the work of PhD candidate Gavin Morris and Honorary Doctor and Adjunct Dr Miriam Rose Ungunmerr-Baumann, which explored Indigenous trauma and healing from a community perspective. Full story here

Partnership to probe the future Australia wantsPartnership to probe the future Australia wants

06 August 2019

How we respond to the significant challenges presented by innovation in science and technology will be the focus of a new partnership between CSIRO, CDU, the University of Queensland and the Australian National University.

As cutting-edge research in areas such as synthetic biology, robotics, precision health, hydrogen and artificial intelligence work to solve the greatest challenges facing Australia, this new partnership will bring leading researchers and scientists from across the nation's innovation system to further understanding of the challenges for society that are emerging from the development of these new areas of science. Link to the Full Story

Smart idea skips to real-world building site

Smart idea skips to real-world building site

06 August 2019

The Smart Skips initiative developed by Charles Darwin University to better manage construction waste could have global implications, depending on the outcome of the pilot project under way in Alice Springs. Four smart skips fitted with weight and visual sensors have been installed at a building site in the Red Centre in a bid to improve the efficiency of onsite sorting within the construction industry.

Each skip is to be filled with different types of waste: concrete and bricks, steel, and two for mixed waste.

Research Fellow Dr Deepika Mathur from CDU’s Northern Institute said the launch at Albrecht Oval, where a grandstand was under construction, was a good illustration of how small-scale and local-level innovation could produce something with national or international ramifications. Read more...

NIAC meeting

NIAC meets again

19 July 2019

The Northern Institute Advisory Committee (NIAC) meeting took place at Northern Institute recently. Attended by Northern Institute (NI) Director, Professor Ruth Wallace, and NIAC members, the Honorable Sally Thomas AC, Ms Lenore Dembski, Professor Lenore Manderson, who were also joined by Professor Peter Skold and Mr Petrarca Karetji via Skype. This was NIAC's second meeting of the year to discuss NI strategic direction and provide advice on its vision, opportunities and challenges.

More information about the NIAC

Bunyip birdMeet the endangered Bunyip bird living in Australia’s rice paddies

16 July 2019

Northern Institute’s Dr Kerstin Zander is one of the authors who wrote this article for The Conversation about the Bunyip bird and how the need to incorporate wildlife conservation on farms has never been greater. Read the full article HERE

"Meet the endangered Bunyip bird living in Australia's rice paddies" —
Congratulations on the article, Kerstin!


NI celebrates NAIDOC week

15 July 2019

Thank you to all who presented and supported Northern Institute’s Indigenous Language & Research Forum to celebrate NAIDOC Week 2019. Special thanks goes to Dr Linda Ford who MC’d and managed the day-long event plus to the Office of the Pro Vice-Chancellor Indigenous Leadership for providing a mouth-watering morning and afternoon tea. NI administration staff, as always, did a wonderful job setting up and facilitating our important annual event.

To view all the pics visit HERE

Aspro Linda Ford

NAIDOC week at Northern Institute

10 July 2019

Territory FM’s Mel Little chats with Associate Professor Linda Payi Ford about NAIDOC week events and the meaning of NAIDOC week and this year’s theme “Voice. Treaty. Truth. Let’s work together.” They were unable to share the entire interview on “Mornings with Mel Little” due to time constraints, so decided to share it online.

This is the unedited, raw audio.

Aspro Andrew Taylor

ABC Interview about NT’s population

10 July 2019

NI Demographer Aspro Andrew Taylor talks to Alexandra Barwick (ABC Alice Springs) about the NT's population diversity and who/why people move to the Territory.

Go to 3.06mins to hear the FULL INTERVIEW

Don Zoellner

VET paper highlighted at Oxford Conference

5 July 2019

NI's Don Zoellner is in the Quad of Keble College (Oxford University) which was the venue of the Journal of VET conference he just presented a paper on comparing the VET ministerial behaviour in the NT, Scotland and British Columbia which makes a case that they all behave like wealthy philanthropists once in office. The three jurisdictions share much in common in terms of self-governance, remoteness, low SES populations, etc.

Great pic, Don! Find out more about Don's VET research HERE

Aspro Pascal TremblayStudy to improve Northern supply chains

04 July 2019

Charles Darwin University is part of a research team working to improve the efficiency of Northern Australia’s agricultural supply chains and freight networks. The new Cooperative Research Centre for Developing Northern Australia (CRCNA) project looks to re-frame the way goods are moved around the North and to Asian customers.

The “Reframing Northern Australia Supply Chains Study” is being undertaken by CDU’s Northern Institute and James Cook University and will take a broad look at supply chains across Northern Australia, with the view to develop more efficient, effective, smart and agile models.

Northern Institute’s Associate Professor in Northern Australian Development, Pascal Tremblay said a final report would outline major potential policy reforms needed to support effective supply chains in Northern Australia.

“Our integrated approach will deliver a framework to support longer-term collaborative planning and implementation of supply chain initiatives into the future, across agencies, across industries and across jurisdictional governments.” Read more.....

Population survey

New CDU research to explore drivers of NT population change

01 July 2019

Researchers from CDU are calling for people to take part in the biggest survey ever undertaken into the drivers of population change in the NT.

The call-out is to past, present and potential Territorians to participate in the survey. It is part of the 2018-28 Northern Territory Population Growth Strategy, “The Territory and Me” research project, and the results will inform policymakers about the drivers of population change.

In the year to September 2018, the Territory’s population is estimated to have declined by 0.2% while nationally the population grew by 1.6%. The aim is to better understand what makes people want to move here, stay living here or decide to leave. The information will be used to devise strategies that ultimately increase the NT’s population. Full Story

CRC award

Major award for CDU Yolŋu research project

01 July 2019

A CDU research project and one of its leading Indigenous researchers have received national recognition from the Lowitja Institute, Australia’s national institute for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health research.

Named in honour of its Patron, Dr Lowitja O’Donoghue AC CBE DSG, the institute works to improve health and wellbeing through high-impact quality research, knowledge translation and by supporting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health researchers.

Northern Institute Associate Professor Ḻäwurrpa Maypilama, a senior Yolŋu researcher, has been recognised with the institute’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health CRC Award.  Project co-leader Associate Professor Anne Lowell said the relationship with the community was seen as one of the strengths of the project. Read more...

Remote voting process

Research aims to boost remote voting

01 July 2019

CDU’s Northern Institute is working with the Northern Territory Government and the NT Electoral Commission to raise Indigenous Territorians’ engagement levels in the electoral process.

Researcher Ian Gumbula has been looking at the barriers to voting in Ngukurr as part of a broader project that includes Galiwin’ku and Daly River. The project aims to devise a model that can lift engagement with the voting process in the bush.

Mr Gumbula recently presented his research to a seminar on Indigenous electoral inclusion held at Parliament House in Darwin. The seminar heard about research into Indigenous electoral inclusion, Indigenous political participation, engagement and representation.

Mr Gumbula said work still needed to be done to explain to people in bush communities why voting was important. “People don’t understand the meaning behind voting. If they do know that then it’s easier for them to decide which person they want to vote for,” he said. Link to the Full Story

CDU helping North

CDU helping tackle comms challenges in North

01 July 2019

CDU is part of a new project that will pave the way for investment in communications infrastructure across Northern Australia.

Funded by the Cooperative Research Centre for Developing Northern Australia (CRCNA), the project aims to improve the profitability and competitiveness of producers in the North and attract investors to put in place affordable digital networks. The 12-month “Northern Australian Communication Analysis Project” will mobilise a consortium of research, business and industry partners including CDU, the Centre for Appropriate Technology in Alice Springs and Regional Development Australia Northern Territory.

These stakeholders will be engaged at forums, including one to be held in Darwin hosted by CDU’s Northern Institute. Read more.....

Exhibition - Judith Lovell

Art exhibit reflects multiple points of view

01 July 2019

An exhibition of art works that reflect a wide range of attitudes towards a statue of explorer John McDouall Stuart has been on public display in Alice Springs.

Charles Darwin University Northern Institute Senior Research Fellow and co-curator Dr Judith Lovell said the exhibition, titled “Monumental in a small-town way: If art is about perception, then how perceptive are we?”, was a collection of visual responses towards the statue, which was gifted to Alice Springs to mark the 150th anniversary of Stuart’s first journey to Central Australia.

“Exhibited together, this collection of work provides a wider perspective on how this monument has been perceived by the public,” Dr Lovell said. Full story here

Growing up children in two worlds new website launched

New Website Launched

21 June 2019

New website, “Ŋuthanmaram djamarrkuḻiny’ märrma’kurr romgurr: Growing up children in two worlds”, which shares Yolŋu cultural strengths and priorities in early childhood with the world, was launched today at Northern Institute.

Professor Ruth Wallace opened the event acknowledging that the team had won a The Lowitja Institute ‘Tarrn Doon Nonin Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Research Ethics Project Award’ for “Ŋuthanmaram djamarrkuḻiny’ märrma’kurr romgurr: Growing up children in two worlds” the night before. Over 50 guests were treated to a presentation by Helen Nyomba (Backbone project committee member), Lawurrpa Maypilama & Anne Lowell (Northern Institute) who shared highlights of the project with video's from the website. The event was followed by a networking luncheon. Thank you to all who attended and supported our event.

Project Team Members: Anne Lowell, Lawurrpa Maypilama, Lyn Fasoli, Rosemary Gundjarranbuy, Jenine Godwin-Thompson, Emily Armstrong, Yalŋarra Guyula, Megan Yunupiŋu, Abbey Guyula, Dwayne Gurruwiwi, Rose McEldowney, Jane Garrutju.

View pics of the launch Visit the website:

First Nations Community Research Group Workshop

First Nations Community Research Group Workshop

21 June 2019

Following-on from a gathering in Humpty-Doo in August 2018, researchers came together for a workshop at Northern Institute to share ideas on building the foundations for a strong coalition of First Nations community researchers.

The workshop is for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community researchers and project teams to share their diverse experiences, expertise and ideas to support high quality grassroots, community-based research. The group advocates that research must better reflect community values and priorities in both setting research priorities and the way they work within communities. United by a sense of respect, collaboration, advocacy and activism it is an opportunity to open the discussion to more community researchers.

Electoral research event 20 June

Electoral Research Regulation Network (NT) hosts event at Parliament House

20 June 2019

This recent event marked the opening of the NT chapter of the Electoral research regulation Network. Around 30 people attended the symposium at NT Parliament house, which brought people together to focus on Indigenous Electoral Inclusion. An excellent opening presentation was given by Ian and Mercy Gumbula (CDU) and other members of their research team from Gumbula Consultancies. This set the scene for the event, and directed discussion to questions of ‘purpose’ and ‘relevance’ for Indigenous people voting in remote communities, as well as the importance of partnerships between local people and electoral commissions. Speakers were: Ian Gumbula, Mercy Gumbula, Shay Gumbula, Joleen Wanambi and Peter Dhamarrandji Mick Sherry, SA Electoral Commissioner Iain Loganathan, NT Electoral Commissioner Professor Lisa Hill, University of Adelaide Facilitated by: Jonothan Louth, University of SA Convened by: Jonothan Louth, University of SA Lisa Hill, University of Adelaide Michaela Spencer, CDU.

Image: Left to right: Lisa Hill, Warwick Gately, Iain Loganarthan, Mick Sherry, Ian Gumbula, Mercy Gumbula, Joleen Wanambi, Michaela Spencer, Shay Gumbula, Peter Dhamarrandji, Jonothan Louth — at Parliament House.

Monumental in a small-town wayMonumental in a small-town way: If art reflects attitude then how perceptive are we?

14 June 2019

New exhibition curated by NI researcher Dr Judith Lovell and NI Honorary Kathleen Wallace OPENS TODAY 6pm at 'Watch this SPACE' gallery in Alice Springs.

Find out more:

CDU logo

Phd Scholarship Opportunity

19 June 2019

We are currently looking for a student to undertake their PhD by research on the topic of local remote Aboriginal workforce development for the Creative Industry in central Australia. We're after a motivated student to join the Creative Careers project team and undertake applied research with a focus on local Aboriginal employment and enterprise pathways in the Creative Industries in Central Australia. The project aims to increase remote local Aboriginal participation in creative industries, or in the application of creative-industry type skills in employment of local Aboriginal people in any industry.

Interested? Contact Dr Judy Lovell at or to find out more:

'Growing up Yolŋu' Website Launch

Growing up Yolŋu' Website Launch

13 June 2019

New website, “Ŋuthanmaram djamarrkuḻiny’ märrma’kurr romgurr: Growing up children in two worlds”, which shares Yolŋu cultural strengths and priorities in early childhood with the world, will be launched by researchers Associate Professor Läwurrpa Maypilama & Associate Professor Anne Lowell.

Friday 21 June at 12.30pm – 1.30pm
Northern Institute, Savanna Room, Yellow 1.2.48 (Casuarina campus)

The launch will involve presentations by the project team followed by a light luncheon. All Welcome. RSVP essential for catering & seating purposes. RSVP via Facebook or directly to Visit the website

The territory and me

'The Territory and Me' survey now launched!

13 June 2019

If you live in the Territory or have lived in the Territory HELP our Demographers to advise policymakers on what to do to make people stay – it takes only 10 mins and you could win flights.

Take the survey -
Read more
about the biggest survey ever undertaken into the drivers of population change in the NT.

Vale Dr Marthen Luther Ndoen

Vale Dr Marthen Luther Ndoen

12 June 2019

We are saddened to learn that our friend and colleague Dr Marthen Luther Ndoen of Universitas Kristen Satya Wacana (UKSW) has passed away today. Dr Ndoen was a Northern Institute Honorary.

We share Pak Marthen’s family and the UKSW family’s deep sadness in losing an amazing person who contributed so much to students education and research that helped communities make decisions about their future. He will be greatly missed.

About Dr Ndoen:

(Picture: Dr Ndoen and Professor Ruth Wallace during a visit to Northern Institute in 2016)

Dr Tom WilsonCDU population modelling helps Tasmanian Govt

03 June 2019

The Tasmanian Department of Treasury and Finance has produced 50-year population projections that rely on a projection model built by CDU.

The projections were prepared using the Regional Population Projection Program (RePPP), designed by Dr Tom Wilson, a demographer in CDU’s Northern Institute.

The RePPP model created projections in Tasmania that differed from the previous Treasury projection model by factoring in the age and gender of migrants into projections. The model then requires migration rates to be inserted for each population cohort based on the age and gender of those who have arrived and departed from the State over recent years. Read more...

Growing up children in two worldsDifference, not deficit: ‘growing up Yolŋu’

03 June 2019

A modern ethnographic study has been woven into a public record of the complex cultural practices vital to the way Yolŋu families raise children in remote north-east Arnhem Land. A new website, “Ŋuthanmaram djamarrkuḻiny’ märrma’kurr romgurr: Growing up children in two worlds”, has been developed from the video-based research project, which shares Yolŋu cultural strengths and priorites in early childhood with the world.

Northern Institute Associate Professor Läwurrpa Maypilama, a senior Yolŋu researcher who co-led the project, said the website would be a source of knowledge for future generations of Yolŋu and an educational resource for non-Aboriginal people.

The project team will launch the website in the Savannah Room at the Northern Institute (building Yellow 1), Casuarina campus, on Friday, 21 June 2019. For event details contact Katrina Britnell, E: or T: 8946 7468. For more information on the website, visit W: 

First peoples

First Peoples: A Roadmap for enhancing Indigenous engagement in museums and galleries

21 May 2019

This highly anticipated Roadmap lays out a 10-year program for strengthening Indigenous engagement across the entire museum and gallery sector in Australia – addressing employment, collections, curation, leadership, cultural safety, keeping places, benefit sharing, repatriation and more. With Indigenous self-determination and reconciliation at its core, it provides key recommendations, critical pathways and targets for the sector to move through over the next ten years.

Terri Janke delivered the Australian Museums and Galleries Association (AMaGA) commissioned landmark document First Peoples: A Roadmap for enhancing Indigenous engagement in museums and galleries at the AMaGA National Conference 2019 in Mparntwe (Alice Springs) last week. View and read the roadmap HERE

Electoral research on Elcho Island

Electoral research on Elcho Island

14 May 2019

We are conducting research in Galiwin’ku (Elcho Island) today! Remote Electoral Engagement and Education

Researchers from CDU and Yalu' Marŋgithinyaraw have been working together at the polling booth in Galiwin'ku. Speaking to people about their experiences of voting in remote communities, and how understandings of voting and elections can be spread to the younger generation. The research also includes partnerships with the NTG and NT Electoral Commission. 

Emily Ford in off the leashNI researcher Emily Ford writes about the importance of the Larrakia Language in 'Off the Leash'

09 May 2019

Darwin - it's a special place. It's the home of people from all over the world, languages and accents from nearly every corner of the globe are spoken here daily.

However, there is one language that has been spoken here since time immemorial and is still being spoken today: the Larrakia language.

This language belongs to the Larrakia people who are the Traditional Owners of the Darwin region, including Trent Lee, who had a chat with us about the importance of traditional languages. Read more...

Growingupyolngu is NOW LIVE

08 May 2019

Ŋuthanmaram djamarrkuḻiny’ märrma’kurr romgurr - Growing up children in two worlds

This website is one way we are sharing Yolŋu knowledge and ideas about child development and child rearing from the findings of a research project conducted in a remote community in Arnhem Land (2012 – 2018).

The research team hope the website is useful and that you enjoy it!

Ŋuli nhe djäl bulu dhäwuw (if you’d like to know more about the research project) please email; or or

CDU-ANU PhD scholar Cathy Bow and native Kunwinjku speaker Seraine Namundja.

Event to celebrate Indigenous languages

07 May 2019

CDU’s Northern Institute, Batchelor Institute of Indigenous Tertiary Education and the NT Government’s Aboriginal Interpreter Service (AIS) will hold a symposium celebrating the International Year of Indigenous Languages.

The “Let’s Talk Aboriginal Languages” symposium on 31 May will discuss the challenges and future for teaching and using Indigenous languages as part of the United Nation’s International Year of Indigenous Languages. Read more...

For further information about the “Let’s Talk About Aboriginal Languages” symposium visit HERE and REGISTER

GWIC project

Virtual reality to build cultural understanding

07 May 2019

CDU is partnering with an Arnhem Land Aboriginal corporation to develop an immersive mixed-reality virtual engagement with a remote homeland. CDU’s Northern Institute is working with the Gong Wanhurr Indigenous Corporation (GWIC) to help build capacity to drive the concept forward.

The project proposes a new method of two-way engagement between remote communities and cultural institutions to open up anew avenue to develop better understanding of Indigenous culture. Read more.....

Development in the spotlightDevelopment in the spotlight

02 May 2019

Sustainability, regulatory reforms, Aboriginal-led cultural studies, resilience, mine closure, Australia’s adoption (or not) of the Sustainable Development Goals, strategic assessment and suggestions for community-centric agreement-making were some of the interesting themes at a conference in Brisbane recently attended by Associate Professor Natasha Stacey from RIEL (Research Institute for Environment and Livelihoods) and PhD Candidate Jane Munday from the Northern Institute. The International Association for Impact Assessment (IAIA) conference attracted nearly 1000 delegates from around the world, including a large contingent from PNG and the Pacific. The conference has a multi-disciplinary focus on all aspects of impact assessment of development, with lots of knowledge sharing and networking over the four-day conference and associated technical tours. Keynote speaker was David Morris, CEO of the New South Wales Environment Defenders’ Office (EDO), who talked about his work as the NT EDO with traditional owners affected by the McArthur River Mine. David compared negative aspects of this project’s approvals with the recent NSW Land Court’s ground-breaking ruling on the Rocky Hill Coal Mine which highlighted the need to consider climate change and psychosocial risks. Jane gave two presentations. The first covered the preliminary findings of her PhD research on a model of social and cultural impact assessment in the context of the ‘Develop the North’ agenda. Read more....

Johanna Funk

Blogging about Galway

31 April 2019

NI PhD student and lecturer Johanna Funk has blogged about her recent visit to Galway to attend OER19 Recentering Open: Critical and global perspectives at the National University of Ireland.

Read the blog HERE

Read more about Johanna's work

ANZAC Odes in Aboriginal languages

ANZAC Day Odes in 3 Aboriginal Languages

25 April 2019

Warrimirri - Dr Kathy Guthadjaka
Marrithiyel - Dr Linda Payi Ford
Nyungar - Professor Len Collard

Lest we forget.


PhD student to present on MECA Collection

26 April 2019

Yasunori Hayashi (Nori), Course Coordinator of the Yolŋu Studies program at CDU College of Indigenous Futures, Arts and Society and PhD student, Northern Institute.

A key member of the Reinvigorating the MECA Collection project, Yasunori Hayashi is passionate about learning and teaching Yolŋu languages, and particularly Yolŋu culture. “Impressed by the sound of yiḏaki (didgeridoo), I first visited Yurruwi (Milingimbi) in the early 2000s and learned to speak languages through the instrument, rather than playing!”.

Yasunori will discuss the recent filmed documentation process of the MECA Collection artworks with people from Milingimbi and Ramingining, and how it will be incorporated into teaching and research resources for Yolŋu Studies at CDU. Link to FB Event page

NI meet Tanya Plibersek & Luke Gosling

NI staff meet with Tanya Plibersek & Luke Gosling MP

24 April 2019

We are at beautiful Charles Darwin University Palmerston campus with Tanya Plibersek & Luke Gosling MP who are talking with Indigenous students, teachers & researchers about NT Indigenous education.

Dr Deepika MathurExperts seek solutions to conquer mountains of waste

18 April 209

Experts from industry, government and academia will put their heads together at a workshop in Darwin next week to explore how to deal with ever-rising mountains of construction and demolition waste produced by a global building boom that shows no sign of abating.

Charles Darwin University Northern Institute Research Fellow Dr Deepika Mathur said the two-day workshop would provide an opportunity to discuss the social, environmental and economic issues associated with construction waste management and identify opportunities and potential solutions.

“This workshop, which follows a similar one in India in January, draws together a cross-section of decision-makers, thinkers and other stakeholders determined to address crucial construction and demolition waste management issues, by learning from each other’s experiences,” Dr Mathur said. Read more.....

Dr Anne Lindblom and Dr Linda FordVisit to CDU by Erasmus Scholar by Dr Anne Lindblom

17 April 2019

In her words...

Through the Erasmus program, I was able to do an 11 day teacher exchange from Karlstad University, Sweden, to Charles Darwin University, Casuarina campus. This was my third time to Australia, but the first time in the Northern Territory. Apart from the humidity, heat and the way it made my hair go frizzy, the biggest, and most pleasant surprise, was how eager everyone was to make me feel at home, and welcome.

On my first day I met Dr Linda Ford, who took me out to dinner, engaged in research discussions and introduced me to researchers. Read the full story...

The Erasmus program (short for the European Community Action Scheme for the Mobility of University Students) is an initiative run by the European Union (EU). It provides opportunities for students to study or gain work experience in a different European country while completing a degree. Link to more info

Telehealth in rural and remote medicine

Rural Medication Australia 2018 Conference is now available to view online

15 April 2019

Telehealth - Simply closing the gap in very remote Indigenous health by Marianne St Clair, Research Fellow Northern Institute. Link to video

Telehealth a game changerNew Paper Just Published

08 April 2019

The Medical Journal of Australia 'Telehealth a game changer: closing the gap in remote Aboriginal communities' a paper written by:

- Marianne St Clair (Researcher, Northern Institute)
- David Murtagh (Researcher, Northern Institute)
- John Kelly (Laynhapuy Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services, Yirrkala)
- Jeff Cook (Laynhapuy Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services, Yirrkala)

Read the paper online

Nikki CurtinCultural tourism building understanding

18 March 2019

The opportunities for tourism to be a vehicle for greater understanding of Indigenous cultures in Australia, and the possible benefits for the reconciliation process, are being investigated by a PhD candidate from Charles Darwin University’s Northern Institute.

Nikki Curtin’s research seeks to look at tourism within a broader context than just the economic impacts.

“Indigenous tourism has social and cultural dimensions as well as economic. It has the potential to improve non-Indigenous Australians’ understanding and contact with Indigenous people and can cross the cultural divide,” Nikki said.  Read more.....

Academic Promotion

NI researchers work recognised

14 March 2019

CONGRATULATIONS to NI researchers Dr Linda Ford, Dr Kerstin Zander & Dr Andrew Taylor on being awarded Academic Promotion - very well-deserved recognition.

Barry Judd Converstaion storyThe summer bushfires you didn’t hear about, and the invasive species fuelling them - The Conversation

12 March 2019

An article by Professor Barry Judd, Professor in Indigenous Social Research, Northern Institute, and Christine Schlesinger, Senior Lecturer in Environmental Science and Ecology, Charles Darwin University.

Read the full article HERE

IWD 2019

NI Celebrates International Women's Day 2019

11 March 2019

Over 85 guests gathered on CDU campus March 8 for Northern Institute’s annual International Women’s Day event last week. This year Northern Institute (NI) celebrated #IWD2019 with an afternoon event of inspiring speakers followed by sparkling and nibbles.

NI Director and Dean of the College of Indigenous Futures, Arts & Society Professor Ruth Wallace MC'd and Bilawara Lee, CDU’s Indigenous Academic in Residence provided the Welcome to Country.

The event was officially opened by Her Honour the Honourable Vicki O'Halloran, NT Administrator then followed a selection of presentations by diverse voices including:

- Dr Elaine ‘Lawurrpa’ Maypilama, Indigenous Academic & Leader
- Mr Charlie King OAM, Anti-Family Violence Campaigner
- Dr Belinda Chaplin, Transgender Women’s Advocate

This year’s International Women's Day theme was #BalanceforBetter. This was the ninth year the Northern Institute has held an event celebrating International Women's Day on CDU campus.

Each year the money raised from cupcake sales and gold coin donations go to a worthy charity - this year NI collected for White Ribbon Australia to help stop violence against women. You can donate directly to White Ribbon Australia at their website here

View the pics of the event HERE

Fords in Hawai

NI experts hold workshops in Hawaii

28 February 2019

This week Dr Payi Linda Ford, Chloe & Emily Ford along with Dr Clint Bracknell of Edith Cowan University are at the 6th International Conference on Language Documentation & Conservation (ICLDC 6) at University of Hawai'i at Manoa holding several 'Talk Story Sessions' on best-practice techniques for recording, documenting & archiving songs in endangered languages.Here they are pictured together at the conference.

You can visit the conference website to view the program HERE


Get ready for International Women’s Day March 8

27 February 2019

This year International Women's Day falls on a Friday (or Fri-YAY!) so Northern Institute have decided to mark it a little differently...with an after work event. We still have an amazing line up of inspiring speakers but we'll follow with drinks and yummy nibbles to start your weekend off.

The opening will be given by Her Hon The Administrator Vicki O’Halloran AM and special guest speakers include:
Mr Charlie King, Anti-Family Violence Campaigner
Dr Elaine ‘Lawurrpa’ Maypilama, Indigenous Academic & Leader
Dr Belinda Chaplin, Transgender Women’s Advocate

Women and men are encouraged to grab a friend (or 3!), hear amazing stories, enjoy truly delicious refreshments and celebrate International Women’s Day with Northern Institute on Friday 8 March 4pm at the CDU Theatre (Orange 3).

This is a FREE and open to the public event but registration is essential. REGISTER ONLINE


Workshop to examine ‘realist’ research, evaluation

20 February 2019

An intensive five-day workshop beginning 4 March at CDU’s Sydney campus will introduce participants to the philosophical assumptions of a realist philosophy of science and their implications for understanding how policies and programs work.

Participants will develop skills in designing and implementing realist research and evaluation, from developing initial questions through to final reporting. The workshop also covers realist review, the realist approach to systematic literature reviews and rapid realist review. Read more....

Ship for world youth

Ship for World Youth visits Darwin

08 February 2019

On 8 February, Professor Ruth Wallace had the honour of representing CDU at the Ship for World Youth (SWY) cocktail reception & dinner on-board the 'Nippon Maru' at Darwin Port, East Arm Wharf. Mr Komagata, Head Administrator SWY, (standing next to Ruth in pic), is wearing a scarf (Yuendumu Design) presented to him by the Vice Chancellor at the official SWY welcome to CDU campus earlier in the week. Mr Komagat wore the scarf to the function and highlighted it during his speech. The Ship for World Youth Program, has over 250 young leaders on board who take part in the program to develop and foster the vision and spirit of international cooperation and global awareness.

To learn more about the Ship For World Youth visit #youthprograms 

Preserving the Kunwinjku language

Preserving the Kunwinjku language of West Arnhem Land

29 January 2019

CDU-ANU PhD scholar Cathy Bow and native Kunwinjku speaker Seraine Namundja, who created multimedia resources for the new course.

The Charles Darwin University (CDU) and the Australian National University (ANU) have launched the first university-level course teaching Kunwinjku - an endangered Aboriginal language spoken by the Bininj people of West Arnhem Land in northern Australia. The course is being coordinated by CDU-ANU PhD scholar and NI Research Associate Cathy Bow in collaboration with the Bininj Kunwok Regional Language Centre.

Ms Bow said the course is a positive step forward for Kunwinjku, which is under threat from the increased usage of English and Kriol – an emerging Aboriginal language with a largely English vocabulary. Read more.....

Prof Barry Judd article

Just published: Kapi Wiya: Water insecurity and aqua-nullius in remote inland Aboriginal Australia

14 January 2019

An article by Acting Pro Vice-Chancellor Indigenous Leadership, CDU and NI Professor in Indigenous Social Research, Professor Barry Judd.

Abstract: Water has been a critical resource for Anangu peoples across the remote inland for millennia, underpinning their ability to live in low rainfall environments. Anangu bio-cultural knowledge of kapi (water) developed in complex ways that enabled this resource to be found. This paper provides a brief insight into how kapi has become devalued in the context of contemporary remote communities with particular reference to my area of expertise – Aboriginal identity, well-being and Australian sports.

Read the article HERE

Construction Waste Reduction Australia-India collaborative workshop

1st Construction Waste Reduction: Australia-India collaborative workshop

09 January 2019

Construction Waste Reduction: Australia-India collaborative workshop was held on 9-11 January 2019 in New Delhi, India

This is a DFAT funded collaboration between Charles Darwin University, University of Melbourne and Energy and Resources Institute, India (TERI) to host workshops on managing construction and demolition waste in India and Australia. The next workshop will be held in Darwin, Australia on 24-26 April 2019.

The keynote speaker was Dr Timothy Kendall, Economic Counsellor, Australian High Commission in India. View the pics and share on Facebook

Ganesh Koramannil

Research Highlights in Education and Science 2018

01 January 2019

The College of Indigenous Futures, Arts and Society Lecturer and NI PhD student, Ganesh Koramannil has had a chapter published in “Research Highlights in Education and Science 2018”. The book is published by The International Society for Research in Education and Science (ISRES).

The chapter title is “ Reading Between Lines and Going Beyond the Data – Towards a Qualitative Outlook for Quantitative Findings: A Second Reading of the Report ‘Completing University in a Growing Sector: is Equity an Issue?’”.

Read the full article HERE

NI PhD student Thi Tam Duong

PhD student Tam gets published  

13 December 2018

NI PhD student Thi Tam Duong (pictured) has just had a chapter published online as part of her study on Vietnamese farmers’ perceptions of biosecurity threats in Australia. Tam's work involved surveying 101 Vietnamese farmers across the Northern Territory, South Australia and Western Australia. Co-authors include NI researcher Dr Kerstin Zander as well as Tom Brewer and Jo Luck. Research article highlights:

  • Biosecurity threats were perceived as one of key agricultural risks (43%).
  • Farmers' perceptions of biosecurity threats were explored in four main dimensions of their life.
  • Belief, information, trust and risk experience had positive influence on farmers’ perceptions of biosecurity threats.
  • English levels were found to have negative influence on farmers' perceptions of biosecurity threats.

To read the full article go to:

Dr Kate Golebiwska

Researcher represents NT on population committee

12 December 2018

NI researcher Dr Kate Golebiowska has been voted in as a committee member and the Northern Territory representative at the Australian Population Association Council for 2019-2020. The Australian Population Association (APA) is Australia’s leading professional association for demographers and has been running for nearly 40 years. The main aims of the APA are

  • To encourage the exchange of information between individuals and organisations in population and related fields
  • To provide a forum for the discussion of population issues
  • To promote population research and education particularly in Australia and the Asia-Pacific region

Congratulations Kate and good luck with your 2-year tenure with APA. You can read more about the APA and the work they do on their website -

CDU library open access award

2018 CDU Library Open Access Award goes to NI Demographer

11 December 2018

Congratulations to Dr Tom Wilson of the Northern Institute for winning the 2018 CDU Library Open Access (OA) Award. The award was for establishing the journal, Australian Population Studies, as a truly open access initiative. Open Access refers to research outputs which are distributed online and free of cost or other barriers. The Australian Population Studies journal was officially launched in November 2017 and the editorial team has recently produced its third issue.

Read the full story HERE

Professor Michael Christie’s keynote at the recent TopEndSTS SymposiumKeynote now available online

06 December 2018

Professor Michael Christie’s keynote at the recent TopEndSTS Symposium ‘Languages and Yolŋu Ground Up research: The metaphysics of translating and interpreting’ is now uploaded to our Vimeo channel.

View the presentation here

Find out more about TopEndSTS here

Dr Kishor Sharma

New 'Economic Analysis and Policy' Journal article 

05 December 2018

A new paper by Professor Kishor Sharma and colleagues 'Trends, patterns and determinants of production sharing in Australian manufacturing' is featured in the 'Economic Analysis and Policy' Journal this month.

You can read the full article and download it HERE


Prof Steven BirdKeeping Indigenous languages strong with mobile technologies

05 December 2018

The Australian Research Council has awarded Charles Darwin University (CDU) a $322,500 Discovery Grant to explore the use of mobile technologies to support Indigenous and non-Indigenous people working together, and learning each other's languages in the process. Northern Institute linguist and computer scientist, Professor Steven Bird received the three-year grant in the latest funding round.

Professor Bird has already explored the use of mobile devices in his preliminary work to learn and teach Kunwinjku, the main language spoken in the West Arnhem region. Read the CDU E-news story HERE

Christman treeBe nice and give this Christmas

04 December 2018

Not sure if you've been naughty or nice? Do something nice and help a Territory kid have a happy Christmas!

Once again Northern Institute are helping our friends at the CDU Office of People and Capability to collect presents for the Salvos to give to some less fortunate Territory kids to enjoy this Christmas. This year we are focussing on the age group 11-16 years.If you'd like to give - please leave your new (unwrapped) gift under the Northern Institute Christmas Tree (CDU Yellow 1 Level 2) by COB Monday 17 December.

For ideas on what to give click HERE

Dr Linda FordNew Australian Journal of Education Paper

04 December 2018

‘Re-imaging Aboriginal leadership in higher education – A new Indigenous research paradigm’

This new Australian Journal of Education Paper was a collaboration with many Northern Institute researchers contributing and lead by Dr Linda Payi Ford.

Read the paper HERE

Citrus cankerCDU creates citrus canker alert videos 

03 December 2018

The Northern Institute at CDU has produced three videos in English, Creole and Yolngu Matha to help spread the word about citrus canker eradication in the bush.

Citrus canker is not harmful to humans or animals but is highly contagious. It affects the quality and quantity of citrus fruit produced, and the ability of citrus growers to sell their produce interstate and internationally.

Senior Research Fellow at the Northern Institute, Dr Linda Ford said eradication messages had been translated into Top End Indigenous languages, so the messages are explained directly to community members. Read the CDU E-news story HERE

Dr Judith Lovel

Special edition journal now online 

3 December 2018

A journal that explores the practice of developing ethical relationships in Central Australia’s complex research environment has been launched in Alice Springs.

Co-editor and Northern Institute Senior Research Fellow Dr Judith Lovell said the inspiration for the special edition of the Learning Communities journal was the 2017 Knowledge Intersections symposium, where researchers from throughout the Red Centre gathered to explore the concept of “crossings”. Read the CDU E-news story HERE

Gotha receives award on country Gotha receives award on country 

3 December 2018

Northern Institute’s Dr Kathy (Gotha) Guthadjaka made the Queen’s Birthday Honours List in 2018 and was recently officially appointed a Member of the Order of Australia by the Administrator of the Northern Territory, Her Honour the Honourable Vicki O’Halloran AM.  

For the first time, the Investiture ceremony was held on Gäwa, Elcho Island, which is Gotha’s country. Read the CDU E-news story HERE

working paper 4

New ‘Working Paper’ Published

27 November 2018

In the ‘Australian Marriage Law Postal Survey’ of 2017- 61.6% responded ‘Yes’. The working paper ‘The geography of Australia’s Marriage Law Postal Survey outcome’ explores the geographical pattern of ‘Yes’ voters. It was written by Northern Institute Demographers Dr Tom Wilson & Fiona Shalley with Francisco Perales from the University of Queensland. Read the paper HERE


VC's awards

CONGRATS to NI staff for their nominations & wins at the CDU Vice Chancellors Awards for Exception Performance today!

26 November 2018

NOMINATED for Exception Performance by Professional Staff Team: CIFAS Administration Team (which includes the Northern Institute Research Support Service team)
In recognition of unfaltering and innovative research and administration services, demonstrating resilience, adaptation and cooperation.

NOMINATED for Exceptional Research Team: NI's Realist Research Evaluation & Learning Initiative Team
In recognition of national and international leadership in evaluation research and methodology AND their outstanding success in winning evaluation research grants and tenders.

WINNER of the Exceptional Research Team: NI's Demography & Growth Planning team
In recognition of the application of the team's research to government policy formulation, generating significant revenue and forging a prominent national and international research profile.

View the pics and share the good news on Facebook and Twitter

Learning Communities Journal (LCJ) launched

23rd edition of NI’s Learning Communities Journal launched

12 November 2018

The latest edition of the Learning Communities Journal (LCJ): International Journal of Learning in Social Contexts was launched at CDU Alice Springs campus and hosted by the CDU Library on 12 November.

NI's Director, Professor Ruth Wallace formally launched the journal with over 20 people attending. Catering was supplied by 'Kungas can Cook'.

Number 23 of the LCJ is a Special Issue titled: Ethical relationships, ethical research in Aboriginal contexts: Perspectives from central Australia. In this special issue, researchers share the experiences, the challenges, the positions and the reflections of researchers from diverse backgrounds who are working in a range of discipline areas in central Australian Aboriginal research contexts. What emerges from these different perspectives is a map of the ethical terrain across which researchers and research participants traverse, and which will, inform both the academy and those embarking or engaged on journeys across this terrain. This journal is FREE to read online or download HERE

'Australian Population Studies'

New 'Australian Population Studies' journal released

12 November 2018

A new issue of the 'Australian Population Studies' journal (Vol 2.No 2) has just been published.

This journal is FREE to read and download HERE

Dr Gotha (Kathy) Guthadjaka, 2018 NT Senior of the Year winner, announced the 2019 Senior NT Senior of the Year

2019 Northern Territory Australian of the Year Nomination Night

8 November 2018

Congratulations to all the nominees and winners!

Dr Gotha (Kathy) Guthadjaka, 2018 NT Senior of the Year winner, announced the 2019 Senior NT Senior of the Year winner Charlie King OAM, a human rights campaigner from Darwin.

Bettina Danganbarr the 2018 NT Local Hero of the Year winner, presented the 2019 award to Kate and Tick Everett — parents of Amy ‘Dolly’ Everett and advocates against bullying from Katherine.

Danzal Baker or ‘Baker Boy’ a rapper and dancer from Milingimbi won the 2019 NT Young Territorian of the Year.

And Michael Long, AFL champion and community leader from Darwin won the 2019 NT Australian of the Year. Michael is an advocate for reconciliation who prompted the AFL to introduce a racial abuse code. View all the pics from the night HERE

Dr Rebecca Hardwick Welcome Dr Rebecca Hardwick

8 November 2018

Please welcome Dr Rebecca Hardwick to the NI family. Rebecca (Becky) is a post-doc research associate working with the Realist Research, Evaluation and Learning Initiative (RREALI) team. 
Her PhD at the University of Exeter was on how third sector (not for profit) healthcare organisations use research and other kinds of knowledge in their work.

You can contact Rebecca on 8946 7491 or

NI meets Indonesian Ministry of Defence

Indonesian Ministry of Defence visit

07 November 2018

Professor Ruth Wallace recently met with an Indonesian Ministry of Defence Delegation at Northern Institute including officials Lieutenant Colonel Luma Sahap Maranata and Major Mahfut to discuss potential cross-collaboration projects and CDU’s capability to partner in training and research in areas such as disaster preparedness and emergency management, public policy and local governance. The delegation presented Professor Wallace with a very impressive engraved medallion to commemorate the meeting.

Senior Lecturer in Indigenous Studies Greg Williams Indigenous language school open for business

05 November 2018

Charles Darwin University has opened its enrolment books in the lead up to a summer school program designed to increase awareness and understanding of endangered Indigenous languages.

Senior Indigenous Studies Lecturer Greg Williams said three workshops were on offer through the Australian Indigenous Languages Institute (AILI) at the CDU Sydney Centre from January 14-25 next year.

“We are offering an Introduction to Yolngu Languages and Culture, a beginner’s course to Gamilaraay (an east Australian language) and an Introduction to Linguistics for Indigenous Languages,” Mr Williams said. Full Story here

Professors Greg Shaw and Ruth Wallace Seamless transition for social sciences and education

05 November 2018

Long-time CDU academics are steering two important new areas of the university, with Professors Ruth Wallace and Greg Shaw now heading social sciences and education teaching and research.

The College of Indigenous Futures, Arts and Society brings together expertise in Indigenous knowledge practices, human geography, disaster preparedness and management, languages, humanities and the creative industries.

The Dean, Professor Ruth Wallace, said the college aimed to be a leader in creative and innovative approaches to engaging with many distinctive perspectives on the world, generating new ideas and critiquing the old. Read more....

Dr Kathy (Gotha) Guthadjaka’s Investiture on country

Dr Kathy (Gotha) Guthadjaka’s Investiture on country

30 October 2018

Northern Institute’s Dr Guthadjaka made the Queen’s Birthday Honours List in 2018 and this week she was officially appointed a Member of the Order of Australia by Her Honour the Honourable Vicki O’Halloran AM, Administrator of the Northern Territory. For the first time, the Investiture ceremony was held on Gäwa, Elcho Island which is Gotha’s country. A small delegation of Gotha’s colleagues including Northern Institute Director and College Dean of Indigenous Futures, Arts & Society, Professor Ruth Wallace, travelled to Gäwa to help commemorate the occasion. The event was preceded over by senior Warramirri clan Elder Daymaŋu (James) Bukulatjpi.

The entire community and school gathered to celebrate with prayers from Allan Maratja and speeches delivered by family including Clive Munyarryun and Mawuyul Yanthalawuy AM, who received her Order of Australia in 1991 for service to education and to Aboriginal culture.
Dances were performed by Gäwa and Galiwin’ku Youth and a banner dance by David Stanfield. The ceremony also included a Citizenship Ceremony for Gäwa Christian School Principal Rachel Herweynen. A highlight of the program was a performance by the Elcho Island Junior Choir, who originally formed as primary age children in the early 1960’s. The choir sang a hymn in a local language, Gupapuyngu. Government dignitaries in attendance included Senator Malarndirri McCarthy and Independent member for Nhulunbuy, Mr Yingiya Guyula MLA. After the formalities, the whole community joined together for an afternoon tea and to sing happy birthday to Gotha who only days before celebrated her 70th birthday.

Northern Australian Women Scientists gather for launch Catalysing Women Science Program

22 October 2018

Calling All Women in Science - 'Catalysing Women Science Program in Northern Australia' was successfully launched on the 18 October 2018 at Darwin Innovation Hub, Darwin. Over 50 people attended and they had the opportunity to share their thoughts and knowledge about women in science.

For further information about this program, please contact Professor Cathy Robinson via

View pics from the event

Wuyagiba students on campus

Wuyagiba students meet researchers on campus

20 October 2018

Recently staff from CDU’s Northern Institute and the Research Institute for the Environment and Livelihoods met with a group of 17 prospective students from Wuyagiba (on the coast between Ngukkur and Numbulwar) who were travelling through Darwin on their way to Sydney to visit Macquarie University. The folks in the group are part of a study group who have set up their own study hub at their outstation at Wuyagiba and are getting ready for tertiary study. They dropped into CDU to meet staff and to get an idea of the study options available at Charles Darwin University. Read more

Chancellor, Kathy (Gotha) Guthadjaka & Ruth Wallace

Gotha's Honorary Doctorate & CDU Graduation 2018

12 October 2018

On Friday, Northern Institute celebrated many milestones at the CDU Graduation Ceremony 2018. Gotha (Kathy Guthadjaka) was awarded an Honorary Doctorate. Our first two Master of Public Policy students graduated. Three of the five PhD students that were awarded their Doctorates were Northern Institute students. Congratulations to everyone!

View the graduation pictures HERE

NI creates Biosecurity alert videos

NI creates Biosecurity alert videos

12 October 2018

Citrus canker has been identified in the Northern Territory (NT) and Western Australia (WA) prompting a nationally coordinated response to eradicate the disease, with movement controls and quarantine measures in place to prevent further spread.

Northern Institute are recording Biosecurity alert videos in English, Kriol & Yolŋu Matha, for the NTG Department of Primary Industry and Resources, to help spread the word to communities across the Top End about citrus canker and what do to if you have a citrus plant.

The recording team includes Mutha (Brenda) Muthamuluwuy and NI researchers Joanne Gondarra, Linda & Emily Ford with Pat Josse providing the technical expertise. To find out more about Citrus Canker visit HERE

Dr Kathy Guthadjaka

CDU grads big day on Friday

11 October 2018

For hundreds of graduands participating in Charles Darwin University’s graduation ceremonies tomorrow (Friday, 12 October), the hard work and effort is about to pay off.

Kathy Guthadjaka will be recognised as an Honorary Doctor of Education for her lifelong dedication to the education of Yolŋu people and will present the Occassional Address at the afternoon ceremony. Also known as Gotha, Dr Guthadjaka’s work in the formation of bilingual and intercultural education is known throughout Australia and stems from her passionate belief that children who form a strong, clan-based identity will be able to take their place confidently in Australian society.

She is continuing to revitalise the Warramiri language and culture through the Australian Literacy and Numeracy Foundation, and her work as Senior Research Fellow and Elder on Country at CDU’s Northern Institute. Read more...

Dr Deepika

Five ways to reduce waste (and save money) on your home renovation

4 October 2018

Deepika Mathur article in The Conversation
On average, renovating a home generates far more waste than building a new one from scratch. This waste goes straight to landfill, damaging the environment. It also hurts your budget: first you have to pay for demolition, then the new materials, and then disposal of leftover building products. By keeping waste in mind from the start and following some simple guidelines, you can reduce the waste created by your home renovation. Read the story

Prof Ruth Wallace & Ben Grimes @ PPP

Seminar discusses the politics of language and its implications on Aboriginal Territorians

2 October 2018

Ben Grimes is a CDU lecturer, lawyer and linguist who specialises in communication issues in the criminal justice system and cross-cultural legal education. Recently Ben presented a People. Policy. Place Seminar to highlight the implications of English language dominance in government on speakers of minority languages. Over 50 people attended including Independent Member for Nhulunbuy Mr Yingiya Guyula who also spoke about his experience communicating in English in Parliament when it is not his first language. Read the abstract

People.Policy.Place Seminars are recorded and uploaded to Northern Institute’s VIMEO Channel.

Prof Barry Judd

PVC Indigenous Leadership shares his research at Indigenous Seminar

27 September 2018

Northern Institute is a proud co-host of the very successful ‘Indigenous Seminar Series’ which is facilitated by Tracey Woodroffe, Indigenous lecturer, academic & Northern Institute PhD student. Recently, Professor Barry Judd, Acting Pro-Vice Chancellor Indigenous Leadership (& Senior NI Professorial Fellow) presented ‘(White) Australian Rules’.

This seminar provided an overview of his recent research engagements with Aboriginal people and sport in central Australia. Professor Judd outlined the key findings and understandings that emerged from his study of Australian (Rules) Football as played and organised by the remote community of Papunya, 240kms North West of Alice Springs.

Dr Heather Gibb

NI Ageing researcher featured in Australian Association of Gerontology promotion

26 September 2018

Dr Heather Gibb is a Northern Institute academic expert in ageing and support for ageing. Last year, Heather was a delegate to the Australian Association of Gerontology (AAG) conference in Alice Springs & was selected to be interviewed for a production on healthy ageing in the community. The video is called 'Ageing is Living: Expert Perspectives. Community engagement in an older Australia'.

This video will likely feature as a material submission to the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety by the AAG. Heather appears in the video talking about remote communities as places for growing old. Link to the video

Ptere Strachan

Stats show rise and fall in Indigenous employment

03 September 2018

A CDU analysis of data gathered 30 years apart shows Indigenous employment has risen in Alice Springs but fallen elsewhere in the Red Centre.

Peter Strachan has been comparing data gathered at the Australian Bureau of Statistics Census in 1986 with that taken in 2016 as part of a Masters research project into Indigenous employment in Central Australia.

“The status of Aboriginal employment in Alice was about 31 per cent in 1986 and almost 36 per cent in 2016,” Mr Strachan said. Read more.....

Dr Deepika Mathur

Waste project boosted by funding

03 September 2018

Alice Springs researcher Dr Deepika Mathur has won a $50,000 grant for a project to tackle the mounting challenge of construction industry waste in Australia and India.

The Northern Institute Research Fellow said the project would allow her to deliver workshops in New Delhi and Darwin next year that focus on an issue critical to both nations.

“We will work with colleagues from the University of Melbourne to present the workshops that address crucial construction and demolition waste management issues and bring stakeholders together to learn from each other’s experiences," Dr Mathur said. Full story here

Dr Tom Wilson

Population expert to brief United Nations

03 September 2018

One of the Territory’s own was given the distinction of presenting new population research to the United Nations this month.

Charles Darwin University Principal Research Fellow Dr Tom Wilson will address the Population Division of the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs at its New York headquarters.

Dr Wilson said the United Nations was keen to hear his findings about whether users wanted to know about uncertainty in subnational population forecasts. It has been a high priority of the division tasked with estimating and projecting levels and trends of populations for every country. Read more.....

Prof Stephen Granett

Indigenous people are ‘critical to conservation’

07 August 2018

Indigenous people own or manage at least one-quarter of the world’s land surface, according to a new study published in the journal Nature Sustainability. Professor of Conservation and Sustainable Livelihoods Stephen Garnett, who led the international consortium that developed the maps, said that understanding the extent of lands over which indigenous peoples retained traditional connection was critical for several conservation and climate agreements.

Professor Cathy Robinson, of both Charles Darwin University and the CSIRO, said some countries stood out as having significant levels of indigenous engagement with conservation.

“In Australia, nearly half of all protected areas were owned and managed by Indigenous peoples,” she said. “The coincidence between the interests of Indigenous peoples and conservation is a cornerstone of Australia’s conservation policy.” Full story here

Dr Linda Ford & Environmental researchers Researchers probe mystery of dying turtles

07 August 2018

Environmental researchers are investigating an increase in malnourished and perished long neck turtles at Finniss River, two hours south-west of Darwin.

Research Fellow Dr Carla Eisemberg said CDU was working with Territory Natural Resource Management on the project.

Dr Linda Ford is also involved in the project as she is a Rak Mak Mak Marranunggu a traditional landowner of Twin Hill Station located on the Wagait Aboriginal Land Trust. Read more....

Dr Tom WilsonAussie cities on track for 8 million people

07 August 2018

Australia’s population is on track to reach “somewhere in the high 30 millions” by the middle of the century with Sydney and Melbourne to top over eight million people each, a leading demographer reported to a national conference in Darwin recently. Charles Darwin University Northern Institute Principal Research Fellow Dr Tom Wilson said Sydney and Melbourne would be similar in population by mid-century, and about the size that London is today.

“We expect to see some growth in regional Australia but stronger growth in the capital cities. The percentage of people living in metropolitan areas will increase from about 67 per cent today to about 73 per cent by mid-century,” Dr Wilson said. Full story

Demographers Anita Maertens and Fiona Shalley Alice counts on migrants to boost population

07 August 2018

One of the keys to increasing Alice Springs’ population could rest with the town’s burgeoning migrant community, Charles Darwin University researchers said at a forum in the Red Centre recently.

CDU Northern Institute Research Fellow Fiona Shalley said that while the town’s population dropped by two per cent in the five years to the 2016 Census, there was a “strong growth potential”, particularly among the Sri Lankan, Taiwanese, Indian and Filipina populations, all of which experienced substantial increases.

“Alice Springs has always had a strong multicultural mix, but this is now more-so than ever with several new migrant communities growing strongly and an increase in the diversity of the overseas-born population,” Ms Shalley said. Read more...

Dr Kerstin ZanderAir-con not the cool option in high density cities

19 July 2018

A new Charles Darwin University study has found that air-conditioners are starting to lose their effectiveness in combatting heat stress in high density population areas.

The study, led by CDU Northern Institute Senior Research Fellow Dr Kerstin Zander, focussed on urban Philippines and investigated perceptions that heat stress increased with population density.

Published online recently in Environmental Research Letters the study found that more than 90 per cent of those surveyed had experienced heat stress and the level of heat stress correlated with population density. Dr Zander said heat stress could harm people’s health, impair well-being and reduce productivity. Read more.....

Dr Tom WilsonAussie cities on track for 8 million people

17 July 2018

Australia’s population is on track to reach “somewhere in the high 30 millions” by the middle of the century with Sydney and Melbourne to top 8 million people each, a leading demographer will report to a national conference in Darwin this week. Charles Darwin University Northern Institute Principal Research Fellow Dr Tom Wilson said Sydney and Melbourne would be similar in population by mid-century, and about the size that London is today.

“We expect to see some growth in regional Australia but stronger growth in the capital cities. The percentage of people living in metropolitan areas will increase from about 67 per cent today to about 73 per cent by mid-century,” Dr Wilson said. Read full story here


Professorial lecture - Prof. Ruth WallaceTerritorians urged to cause disruption

02 July 2018

The people of Northern Australia can take the lead in the future development and change of the region and cause the next major disruption in their lives, according to a Charles Darwin University academic.

College of Indigenous Futures, Arts and Society Dean Professor Ruth Wallace will present the first Professorial Lecture for 2018 titled “Indigenous Advantage: can Northern Australia lead through innovation?” on Wednesday, 11 July.

The lecture will be held from 5:00pm to 7:00pm on Wednesday 11 July 2018 at the CDU Theatre, Casuarina campus. All welcome, but bookings are essential: RSVP to E: or T: 08 8946 6554. Read more...

Dr Andrew TaylorPopulation forum coincides with 25-million milestone

02 July 2018

The number of people living in Australia will conveniently reach the 25-million mark this month, about the same time that leading demographers, statisticians and researchers gather in Darwin for a national population conference. Charles Darwin University Northern Institute Senior Research Fellow and conference organiser Dr Andrew Taylor said a broad range of trends and issues would be examined during the three-day event, starting 18 July.

“One of the topics we’ll look at is the Australian population, which is on the cusp of a noteworthy milestone and growing at a particularly fast rate for a developed nation,” Dr Taylor said. Read full story here

NAIDOC 2018CDU gears up for NAIDOC Week

02 July 2018

The university will celebrate NAIDOC week with a series of events on the theme “Because of Her, We Can” from 9 July to13 July. During the celebrations CDU will recognise the achievements of the many Indigenous women who have made significant contributions to the university. The events being organised by the Office of the Pro Vice-Chancellor Indigenous Leadership, Northern Institute and CDU Library include the launch of the Djambarrpuynu Dictionary, an exhibition, the Indigenous Language and Research Forum, and lectures.

Acting Pro Vice-Chancellor Indigenous Leadership Professor Barry Judd said Indigenous women had inspired and driven change for staff and students.

“This is an opportunity to acknowledge the Indigenous women in our university community – their achievements, their voice, and passion to empower past generations and pave the way for generations to come,” Professor Judd said.

STEM Grant

Grant to support women in STEM

02 July 2018

Charles Darwin University is one of 22 organisations sharing in more than $4 million worth of Federal Government grants as part of the second round of the Women in STEM and Entrepreneurship (WISE) programme.

CDU Dean of the College of Indigenous Futures, Arts and Society Professor Ruth Wallace said the programme engaged entrepreneurship.

“The programme will be a catalyst in enabling women to drive evidence based approaches, innovation and unique solutions to the challenges and opportunities of northern Australia,” Professor Wallace said. Read more...

For a list of grant recipients, visit W:

Yolngu Lecturer Brenda Muthamuluwuy

Language classes a must before Garma Festival

02 July 2018

People attending the Garma Festival in Gulkula, north-east Arnhem Land this year have the opportunity to undertake workshops in language and culture to enhance their experience and learning. College of Indigenous Futures, Arts and Society, with the Australian Indigenous Language Institute, will hold two short intensive Yolngu language and culture courses in July in advance of the festival.

Yolngu Studies Lecturer Brenda Muthamuluwuy said it was important to have an understanding of language and culture when visiting Indigenous communities in the Northern Territory.

Linguist Cathy Bow said the workshops, to be held in Darwin, were available to anyone who wanted to become more familiar with Yolngu language and culture.

The four-day intensive language learning workshop “Yolngu Mala Wangany: Yolngu are One” will run from 23-26 July from 9am to 1pm. Click here for more details


Gotha and Former Governor General

NI researcher Kathy Guthadjaka (Gotha) awarded AM

11 June 2018

KATHY Guthadjaka has been awarded an AM for significant service to the Indigenous community through contributions to education and cultural preservation in East Arnhem Land.

The distinguished campaigner’s service includes:

      • SENIOR Research Fellow, Northern Institute, Charles Darwin University, current.
      • EDUCATOR Shepherdson College Galiwin’ku, 48 years.
      • GAWA Christian School - Elcho Island
      • HOMELAND Visiting Teacher, since 1990s.
      • FORMER Assistant Teacher and Language/Cultural Consultant.
      • HELPED establish the community and the school.

Her other awards and recognition includes:RECIPIENT, Northern Territory Female Elder on Country Award, NT NAIDOC Committee, 2015 and; SENIOR Australian of the Year, Northern Territory, 2018. NT News story

Marianne St ClairForum to highlight broadband benefits to Indigenous health

04 June 2018

Northern Institute research fellow Marianne St Clair will join other experts to discuss the advances in connectivity and digital inclusion in regional, rural and remote Australia at the Broadband for the Bush Alliance Forum VII this week 6-8 June. The conference is supported by Northern Institute. Read the story HERE

Linda Ford & Alby MarshNI Project wins National Science Exchange Program - Collaboration Award 2018

01 June 2018

We won!!! NI researchers Dr Linda Ford and Professor Ruth Wallace with Plant and Food Research (NZ) Alby Marsh have won the Plant Biosecurity Cooperative Research Centre 2018 Collaboration Award: For the demonstration of exemplary collaboration skills, bringing together different disciplines and organisations in novel ways for better plant biosecurity outcomes. Linda and Alby accepted the award which recognised their research project ‘Building Resilience in Indigenous Communities through Engagement: A Focus on Biosecurity Threats’.

Read full story HERE
Read more about their award winning project HERE

Australia’s non-heterosexual population

Estimates of Australia’s non-heterosexual population

01 June 2018

Just published: Estimates of Australia’s non-heterosexual population. A paper by NI Demographers Dr Tom Wilson and Fiona Sharley.

Read the paper:…/article/view/23

Nafsa2018NI at NAFSA

31 May 2018

We are at NAFSA Annual Conference and Expo 2018, Philadelphia, the biggest International educationa event of the year. 10000 attendees from more than 3500 educational institutions from over 100 countries. And we are promoting our unique NT as the best place to visit, study and do research. Visit the conference website HERE

Symposium co-convenors Dr Lisa Papatraianou and Dr Al Strangeways

Symposium showcases Red Centre research

29 May 2018

In welcoming more than 70 delegates to the second annual Knowledge Intersections symposium held at Alice Springs, Northern Institute Director Ruth Wallace said it was important to gather together and think about knowledge and how researchers work together. Read the CDU E-news story HERE

Ganesh Koramannil

Congratulations Ganesh!

29 May 2018

Ganesh Koramannil is an Northern Institute PhD student, who also lecturers in the area of Indigenous Knowledges, Linguistics and Education at CDU, and received the Emerging Scholar Award at the Eighteenth International Conference on Knowledge, Culture and Change in Organisations. Read the full CDU E-news story HERE

Gawa Cosmology Field TripGäwa Cosmology Field Trip

24 May 2018

Gäwa Cosmology Field Trip led by Dr Linda Ford with Ben Van Gelderen and Joanne Gondarra for the ARC Aboriginal Cosmology Project : What this means for women and gender public policy and Milky Oyster Project. Gäwa is situated on the northern tip of Elcho Island in Arnhem Land, NT.

More info about our project can be found HERE. Note: These pics are subject to copyright and may not to be copied or distributed in anyway without permission of Northern Institute.

NT Non-Resident Workforce in 2016New report: The NT’s non-resident workforce

18 May 2018

The Territory's Non-Resident Workforce in 2016: Four things you need to know by Dr Andrew Taylor - Demographer and Growth Planning, Northern Institute.

The ‘Local Jobs Package’ in the Territory’s 2018/19 Budget ( included initiatives encouraging workers in mining and other sectors to base in the Territory.

In the past, the Territory has had the highest proportion of non-resident workers of all jurisdictions (other than the ACT). We’ve crunched the latest data and here are four key things you need to know: Read the full story HERE

Noel FinchVale Noel Finch

18 May 2018

We were saddened to hear that Noel Finch a PhD student and friend of Northern Institute passed away this week after a long but heroic battle with cancer.

Noel had an extensive background and experience teaching and mentoring first nations throughout his life from being a primary teacher on Thursday Island to Principal of Aboriginal community College (Adelaide), he was also Head of School of Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Studies (Kangaroo Point College of TAFE) and Associate Director with Batchelor College.

Noel was young at heart and drawing on his deep experience in Indigenous education when he joined the Northern Institute to accomplish his life-long dream to complete his PhD. He achieved this in December 2017 with the successful awarding of his PhD for his thesis. Read more.....

IDAHOBIT DAY International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia

17 May 2018

NI staff were thrilled to attend this event held on CDU campus today.
Guest Speakers:
- Sally Sievers, Anti-Discrimination Commissioner, NT
- Meredith Parry, Deputy Vice Chancellor CDU
- Dr Danielle Stewart, Northside Health NT, and
- Louisa Manning-Watson, NT QUTE

The speakers were amazing plus there were performances by NT's most fabulous DragQueens Vogue MegaQueen and Tiwi sistagirl Shaniqua. The event was beamed via conference to all CDU campuses, and there were cupcakes available via gold coin donation (proceeds donated to Minus 18, Australia’s youth driven network for LGBTIQ youth).

Congratulations Belinda Chaplin for such an entertaining, insightful and successful event. Link to more photos

queer eye "Northern Institute gets it"

15 May 2018

Article 'Queer eye for the Straight City' by Jill Diane Pope discusses NT's declining population and could a queer makeover encourage people to settle in Darwin.

Read the article:…/queer-eye-for-the-st…/

The Crawford Fund - NT Forum

The Crawford Fund – NT Forum

10 May 2018

Northern Institute attended The Crawford Fund - NT Forum 'Developing the Indo-Pacific Region and Developing the North: Opportunities and Partnerships', 10 May (Parliament House).

Dr Helen Garnett MC'd the event. Dr Garnett is a former CDU Vice-Chancellor and currently Chair of the Crawford Fund’s Northern Territory Committee and a member of the Board of Directors. Hon Ken Vowles, Minister for Primary Industry and Resources, opened the event. Samantha Nowland was awarded the Crawford Fund 2018 International Student Award for Northern Territory. Samantha's research is about Coastal Women’s Enterprise Building; with a Case study in pearl handicraft in Tonga, Fiji.

Keynote was given by Prof Andrew Campbell, Chief Executive Officer at the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR) and former head of the Research Institute for Environment and Livelihoods (RIEL), Charles Darwin University (CDU). His keynote focused on progress in global food security, and ACIAR and the NT’s role in agricultural development efforts.

Professor Simon Maddocks, Vice Chancellor and President of CDU managed a panel of some of the students and trainers explaining the innovative NT research and training underway to benefit both our neighbours’ and the Top End’s agriculture, and the benefits flowing back to them personally and professionally – highlighting the real win-win-win that results from ‘doing well by doing good’. View all the pics here

Professor Rolf Gerritsen

What did the 2018 Budget do for the Territory?

08 May 2018

NI's Professor Rolf Gerritsen contributed to this article on the impact of the Federal Budget on the #NT for 'The Conversation'

Read the full story

Ben Van Gelderen

Researchers win $12,000 for history projects

01 May 2018

An NI PhD candidate and CDU lecturer has won a $2000 grant in support of a doctoral history project into the Warramiri clan and the establishment of the Gäwa community on Elcho Island in the Northern Territory. Growing Our Own Coordinator Ben Van Gelderen said the funds would allow him to travel to the remote East Arnhem community, where he once worked as a school teacher, to further his “best of both worlds” research project

“The Gäwa story is a powerful local narrative, which also will resonate with many Northern Territory communities and broader Indigenous histories,” Mr van Gelderen said.
Read the full Enews story by Patrick Nelson:

jeanette millier

PhD student to keynote

01 May 2018

Northern Institute PhD candidate Jeanette Millier is keynoting at the upcoming Knowledge Intersections II Symposium to be held in Alice Springs, 17 May. Jeanette is in the latter stages of an ethnological study that involves the collection of “authentic stories by a group of remote central Australian Aboriginal families who discuss the ‘growing up’ of their children”. Read the full CDU Enews story here

Aboriginal Tourism WorkshopAboriginal Tourism Workshop

30 April 2018

Northern Institute (NI) hosted a day-long workshop April 30 that saw an amazing group of Aboriginal tourism small business operators come together to talk about ‘Developing product innovation platforms for Indigenous/Aboriginal Tourism SMEs: Supporting Aboriginal economic participation through coordinated product diversification’.

A combination of discussion about product development and innovation platforms, keynote speakers, investigation of potential grants that could support new ideas and feedback from some invited Northern Territory Government representatives made for a very interesting day. Full Story and more photos...

Immigrant-born workers... Kate & Alicia

New paper published

16 April 2018

Congratulations to NI researchers Dr Kate Golebiowska & Alicia Boyle along with NI Adjunct Sophie Pennec and CDU VET's Denise Horvath who have just published a paper "Immigrant-born workers and quality early childhood education and care in the Northern Territory, Australia" in the International Journal of Training Research.

The paper showcases collaboration between Northern Institute (Kate and Alicia), Institut National d'Etudes Demographiques (National Institute of Demographics) in Paris (Sophie) and CDU VET Children’s Services and Education Support.

Read the paper HERE

Emily Ford - NT Young Achiever Awards

NT Young Achiever Awards 2018

13 April 2018

Friday night we joined the Ford family at the NT Young Achiever Awards to support Emily Ford, a Northern Institute junior research assistant and @CDUni Law student who was a finalist of the Genesee & Wyoming Australia Indigenous Achievement Award. It was a close race with some inspiring leaders in the running including 2016 NT’s Miss World Australia entrant Magnolia Maymuru but the winner was Daryl Lacey. Daryl is dedicated to helping conserve Australia’s northern environments and Indigenous cultures, was a senior ranger with the Dhimurru Aboriginal Corporation and is a Team Leader with the Federal Department of Agriculture. Daryl’s work covers the Top End with a focus on North Eastern Arnhem Land. He has created strong links and facilitated better outcomes for Northern Australian biosecurity efforts. Daryl is also an accomplished sportsman. Congratulations Daryl and all the finalists for being role models in your community and beyond. See more pics HERE

NI hands over International Women’s Day donations

NI hands over International Women’s Day donations

12 April 2018

This week Northern Institute Director, Professor Ruth Wallace, handed over nearly $400 raised from the gold coin donation entry and cup-cake fundraiser held at Northern Institute’s annual International Women’s Day function in March.

Paula Hawthorne and baby Lauren (who slept through the entire event) joined Mary Petersen to accept the donation on behalf of the Australian Breastfeeding Association (ABA). The money raised will help the local branch to continue to provide their valuable services to the Darwin, Palmerston and Rural community.

To find out more about the ABA’s services and events please visit their Facebook page HERE.

CIFAS admin office opening

New College office opening!

03 April 2018

Congratulations to the new College of Indigenous Futures, Arts & Society (CIFAS), which NI is now a part of,  who opened their reception area today at CDU Casuarina Campus - Yellow 1 Level 2 - the CIFAS admin team now have a dedicated area to support their staff and we all celebrated with black forest cake.  To find out more visit the CIFAS Facebook page LINK

Pic: Professor Ruth Wallace (Acting Dean, CIFAS) symbollically breaks a bottle of sparkling while Alan Graham (CIFAS College Manager) cuts the cake

Jakarta ‘Realist Evaluation’ workshop

Jakarta ‘Realist Evaluation’ workshop

03 April 2018

NI Realist Evaluation expert Gill Westhorp travelled to Atma Jaya Catholic University of Indonesia in Jakarta recently to run a three day ‘Introduction to Realist Evaluation’ workshop. The workshop was jointly sponsored by Northern Institute (CDU), Atma Jaya Catholic University of Indonesia and Wahana Visi (World Vision Indonesia). Over the past four years, Gill has led a capacity-building realist evaluation of a Citizen Voice and Action program conducted by Wahana Visi - co-facilitators for the Jakarta workshop were drawn from that group.

“It’s fantastic to see the progress those team members have made,” Gill said, “from participants in training workshops themselves to helping to provide training in realist evaluation for others.”

More than 30 participants took part and came from several universities, Wahana Visi’s national office and international regional office, international non-government organisations and evaluation consultants in Indonesia.

“This workshop filled in three days after it was advertised, and there’s a lot of interest in running a repeat event later in the year. We really hope to see more realist evaluation in Indonesia over time,” said Gill. To find out more about NI’s Realist Evaluation work please visit HERE

Cyclone Marcus

Cyclone Marcus & 'Lessons not learned' - An article by NI researchers Deepika Mathur & Supriya Mathew

27 March 2018

Darwin was directly in the path of Cyclone Marcus and suffered severe impacts from wind gusts up to 130km/hour on Saturday, March 17. Northern Territory authorities made no declaration of emergency, but the Insurance Council of Australia declared it a “catastrophe” for the Greater Darwin region. Marcus is considered the city’s second-worst cyclone after Tracy, which devastated Darwin on Christmas Eve 1974.

The good news is that no deaths have been reported. But had it been a category 4 or 5 cyclone, instead of category 2, how would the city have fared?

The post-Marcus chaos in Greater Darwin is not just “a real wake-up call”, but a typical case of lessons yet to be learned. For example, large shallow-rooted trees planted after Cyclone Tracy and overhead power lines brought down in the cyclone were both hazards that could have been avoided. Read more...

Prof Barry Judd

Bush footy may be health key - researcher

26 March 2018

An Australian Rules football competition in Central Australia’s bush communities may hold the key to improved health and wellbeing outcomes among Aboriginal people, a Charles Darwin University researcher says. Northern Institute Indigenous Social Researcher Professor Barry Judd put forward the idea to guests of philanthropist Susan Alberti at the Australian Club in Melbourne this month on the eve of the 2018 AFL season.

“I spoke about the wellbeing benefits of playing football in Indigenous communities such as Papunya, and of the need for an on-country football league with support from the AFL industry to operate out there in a way that it hasn’t to date,” Professor Judd said.

“I explained that these communities are relatively safe places for young men to play football. They are places where they know how to behave socially according to traditional law, and where elders are able to engage with younger men and put them on a right path in life through football.”

Professor Judd, a descendant of the Pitjantjatjara people and a leading scholar on Aboriginal participation in Australian sport, has spent several years observing the social impact of Australian Rules on Indigenous Australia and how participation in organised sport affects identity and everyday life in remote communities. Read the full story here

NI celebrates their 8th International Women’s Day event

18 March 2018

Over 70 guests gathered on CDU campus March 8 for Northern Institute’s annual International Women’s Day event. An opening address was presented by the newly appointed NT Administrator Her Honour Vicki O’Halloran with The Hon Lauren Moss MLA delivering the keynote speech. Bo Remenyi, Northern Territory Australian of the Year, was guest of honour and Bilawara Lee, CDU’s Indigenous Academic in Residence provided the Welcome to Country. The gold coin entry fee & cupcake fundraiser raised several hundreds of dollars for the local branch of the Australian Breastfeeding Association (ABA).

IWD 2018

As well as a delicious morning tea and Photo-booth for people to express their #PressforParity support there were displays by:

- Australian Breastfeeding Association
- Childbirth Education Foundation
- CDU Office of People and Capability
- Northern Territory Education Union
- CDU International House
- Centrelink
- Miracle Babies Foundation
- Rheumatic Heart Disease Australia

After the morning tea Northern Institute, in partnership with the ABA, ran a panel discussion entitled ‘Paid work & Parenting: Policy Matters’ addressing the issue of returning to work as a primary carer of children, the challenges faced and the policies that make it easier. The panel was MC’d by Megan Lawton with panel members including The Hon Lia Finocciaro MLA, NT Anti-Discrimination Commissioner Sally Sievers and primary caregivers Amy Harrison and James Courtney. It was wonderful to see so many women taking part in the Q&A and particularly families with young children and babies attending the event as a whole – we hope this tradition continues for future IWD celebrations. See you at IWD2019!

View event photographs LINK
View Photo-booth photographs LINK

otential paths for Australia's future population

You decide Australia’s population, we’ll show you how it looks

13 March 2018

Australia's population has more than quadrupled in the past century, with the number of people tipped to reach 25 million this year. If current trends continue the population will top 40 million within 40 years.

Some say Australia should have stopped growing decades ago. Others point out Australia is a wealthy country with plenty of space to welcome more. This is your chance to decide how big (or small) you think Australia should be.

"A lot of debates about population size seem to focus solely on the total population number. But in many ways the age structure of the population is much more important," demographer Tom Wilson, a principal research fellow at Charles Darwin University, said. Read the full story here

Demography March 10`

NT Government urged to focus on seven ‘key areas’ to boost shrinking population

11 March 2018

WORK is the main reason people move to the Territory, but it’s also a driving force for people to pack up and leave, new research shows. To boost the NT’s shrinking population, Charles Darwin University researchers Andrew Taylor and Dean Carson are recommending the Gunner Government focus on seven key areas — which will give the best “return on investment”.

Priorities include attracting women early in their early working life, making the NT more ‘retiree friendly’ and keeping people in the Territory as they progressed in their career.

“The Territory is now eight years into a low population growth era featuring deterioration in interstate migration, and particularly the ‘failure to arrive’ of large numbers of people in what previously were key migrant groups,” researchers found.

“During the past four years NT growth has generally been well below the national rate and this has created a decline in the NT’s share of the national population.” Read More

Dr Deepika

What is a 'SmartSkip'?

07 March 2018

James Dean of ABC Radio Alice Springs talks to NI researcher Deepika Mathur (pictured) about a new smart skip trial taking place in Alice Springs to better understand building wastage & improve productivity with recycling & landfill. Listen Here


Women to Press for Progress at celebration

06 March 2018

The Northern Territory will join the global call to action to “Press for Progress” when some of the NT’s most prominent women gather at Charles Darwin University this week to celebrate International Women’s Day. The 8th International Women’s Day event hosted by the Northern Institute on the theme #PressforProgress will include speakers Her Honour the Honourable Administrator of the Northern Territory Vicki O’Halloran AM and Lauren Moss MLA. Also attending are NT Australian of the Year award recipients Bo Remenyi and Kathy (Gotha) Guthadjaka.

The aim of the international event is to motivate and unite friends, colleagues and communities to think, act and be gender inclusive.

Her Honour the Administrator said there was no doubt that a global movement was occurring. “Ensuring that this momentum does not dwindle is the responsibility of all of us – across genders, ages and cultures,” she said. “It is my experience that together we can achieve great things.” Read more....

apokries greek party feb2018

Director supports local Greek Community ‘Apokries’ Party

23 February 2018

The Guardians of the Greek Language and Culture in conjunction with Darwin Friends of FLOGA Inc. hosted a “Apokries” Fancy Dress Party at the Greek Orthodox Community Hall in Cavenagh St in February. Many families attended the event to support the Hellenic & Greek Program at Charles Darwin University (CDU) as well as FLOGA (Parents Association of Children with Cancer). There was live music from a band of young Greek people who played traditional songs from the Greek islands. The event was supported by numerous families as well as officials of CDU.

Representatives of CDU included Professor Simon Maddocks, Vice Chancellor of CDU, and his wife Vicky Maddocks, Professor Ruth Wallace, Dean of the College Indigenous Futures, Arts & Society and Director of Northern Institute, Dr Christian Bok, Dr Stephen Miller. Associate Professor George Frazis was the MC for the night and presented two short videos showcasing activities of the organisers. Professor Maddocks gave a speech and welcomed the synergy between the Guardians of Greek Language and the Darwin Friends of FLOGA Inc., who joined forces to support children and education.

It was hailed as a very successful night and demonstrated the support of the Greek Community towards the Greek and Hellenic Studies undertaken at CDU. Photographs of the event can be found on the Greek Community NT Facebook page.

Sweden Ambassador visit

Ambassador of Sweden visits Northern Institute

20 February 2018

The Ambassador of Sweden H.E. Par Ahlberger & Mrs Helene Ahlberger spent the morning at Northern Institute (NI) 13 February.  The Ambassador met with NI researchers to learn more about Indigenous populations and the challenges of living and working in remote communities as well as the current research work between NI and Umea University.

The Ambassador also met with Professor Lawrence Cram, Pro Vice-Chancellor and Vice-President Research and Research Training, Stacey Faraway, Director of International and Sally-Anne Hodgetts, Manager International Projects and Operations to talk about the current and possible collaborations with Sweden and CDU in the areas of research and study.

The Ambassador was extremely pleased with the visit mentioning Northern Institute was the 'highlight of my visit' to Darwin. He also expressed a keen interest to visit NI again when he returns to Darwin in July this year. Visit LINK to view more photographs of the visit. 

Population Projection survey

Population Projection survey released

16 February 2018

Do you use population projections? Decisions based on the future population involve millions of dollars. Northern Institute (NI) want to know how you use them and how you process the uncertainty. The Population Projection survey forms part of research being undertaken by NI Demographers Dr Tom Wilson and Ms Fiona Shalley and focuses on how well users understand the uncertainty associated with population projections.

Survey purpose: Population projections are estimates of what the population may be in the future. We can't predict the future with certainty so all population projections include forecast error. This is associated with assumptions made about the elements of population change (births, deaths and migration), and the models and data used to estimate population change over time. We are interested in whether users of population projections understand the impact of this forecast error, which is often described as 'uncertainty', and whether users consider it in their decision making. We also want to investigate the best way to communicate the uncertainty to a range of different population projection users.

You can take part in the Population Projection Survey at this LINK

Treasure Language Storytelling

NI celebrates International Mother Language Day

12 February 2018

NI’s Professor Steven Bird will produce another "Treasure Language Storytelling" show to mark International Mother Language Day on 25 February 2018. Indigenous and immigrant women who have made Palmerston their home will share stories from the heart, at Durack Community Centre beside CDU's Palmerston Campus. Most other multicultural events focus on cuisine and costume, but Steven Bird designed this storytelling format as a way to celebrate the thousands of small languages still spoken in the world today, and to publicly recognise the people who are keeping them strong. The event has women share stories in Indigenous and immigrant languages with translations into English. Past audiences have described the event as "beautiful, inspiring, moving, rich, spine-tingling, eye-opening"! "Treasure Language Storytelling" is produced with Aikuma Project, in partnership with Darwin Community Arts. Book tickets

Prof Rolf

Researcher new president of regional science body

05 February 2018

Charles Darwin University’s Central Australian research leader Professor Rolf Gerritsen has ascended from vice president to president of the Australia New Zealand Regional Science Association International for the next two years. The Alice Springs based professorial research fellow with CDU’s Northern Institute becomes the first person with a major research focus on remote Australia to lead the organisation.

“We will organise an annual conference for late in the year and publish an edition of the Australasian Journal of Regional Studies,” said Professor Gerritsen, who was elected president at the annual conference in Toowoomba. Read more...

Cat Street PPP

Indigenous Higher Education Policy presentation draws a crowd

25 January 2018

Cat Street, Project Coordinator at the Office of Pro Vice-Chancellor Indigenous Leadership (CDU) presented our first People.Policy.Place seminar of the year in January. The seminar ‘Review of Indigenous Higher Education Policy in the Northern Territory – Where have we come from and where are we heading?’ was well attended by over 40 people.

Cat has experience in research and evaluation in health and education settings in the Northern Territory and internationally. She has been involved in delivery of numerous initiatives that aimed to unlock capacity of remote Indigenous communities in the areas of health promotion and higher education. She shared her findings of a research project that examined Indigenous perspectives of ‘success’ in higher education in the context of an ever-evolving Indigenous higher education policy landscape with particular attention to historical government higher education policies and the responses of institutions in the NT to these policies.

The event was recorded and uploaded for viewing on the Northern Institute Vimeo channel

TerritoryQ CDU technology

Don't Forget to Pick Up a Copy of The Latest TERRITORYQ Magazine

24 January 2018

NI researchers Dr Kerstin Zander & Dr Deepika Mathur are taking part in two of four NEW Charles Darwin University major technology projects addressing the NT's energy & waste problems – view link to read all about it in the latest TerritoryQ Magazine.


Dr Judith Lovell and Dr Al Strangeways Town still upset with statue, say researchers

12 December 2017

The John McDouall Stuart statue in Alice Springs continues to evoke a deep emotional response from townspeople, say two Charles Darwin University researchers in the Red Centre. Senior research fellow and former creative arts therapist Dr Judy Lovell said a public arts engagement project that centred on a statue of the explorer had tapped into a vein of powerful emotion and resulted in the production of a collection of thought-provoking artworks.

“Participants have expressed hurt, anger and sadness among a broad range of visual responses that also was marked by humour, quirkiness and an appreciation of arid landscape,” Dr Lovell said. Read more....

Prof Lisa's Farewell

NI Farewells Deputy Director

11 December 2017

On December 6, staff came together to farewell Northern Institute’s Deputy Director Professor Lisa McManus. Lisa has been with NI since August 2016 and proved a truly valuable member of the team when she stepped up as Acting Director while Professor Ruth Wallace spent 6 months in the USA for her Fulbright scholarship. Lisa was also the Dean of Research and Research Training for the Faculty of Law, Education, Business and Arts at CDU and prior to that headed the School of Business at the Waterfront.

CDU’s loss is University of Tasmania’s gain as Lisa will be heading the ‘Tasmanian School of Business and Economics’ in the new year. Lisa’s happy and lively personality will be greatly missed. NI staff wished her all the very best on her Tasmanian adventure with Ruth presenting her with an original Alice Springs hand-made beanie to keep her warm in the cold Tassie weather. View more pics

LEBA end of year 2017

LEBA Faculty farewelled

04 December 2017

NI staff joined Faculty of Law, Education, Business & Arts (LEBA) staff at an 'End of Year Celebration' last Friday December 1, 2017. Recently retired PVC of LEBA. Professor Peter Kell (pictured), returned from interstate to attend the event and acknowledge the hard work and dedication of the LEBA Faculty team. Professor Kell's wife, Dr Marilyn Kell, who also said a few words, has been a Research Fellow at Northern Institute for many years and will be sorely missed. LEBA is one of two CDU Faculties which will be replaced with Colleges in 2018 so the end of year function doubled as an end of Faculty function.

Dr Tom Wilson

New journal examines population trends

04 December 2017

A free online academic journal that discusses research into Australia’s population has been launched at Charles Darwin University. Northern Institute demographer and journal editor Dr Tom Wilson said the CDU-based Australian Population Studies was the only journal dedicated specifically to population research in Australia.

“It is also the first online open-access journal hosted by the CDU Library,” Dr Wilson said. “And it is a bit different from most journals.” Dr Wilson said the journal invited three types of contribution, including regular research papers, introductory guides that explained demographic methods and theories, and the use of visualisation to present data in interesting and innovative ways. “We expect it will be of interest to students, researchers, practitioners, teachers and others wishing to learn about demography,” he said. Read more....

Dr Deepika

Northern Institute researchers win $250,000 for ‘smart city’ idea’

04 December 2017

A research team in Alice Springs has won a $250,000 grant to develop a “smart system” for reducing the amount of waste sent to landfill. Research Associate Dr Deepika Mathur from CDU’s Northern Institute said the project to develop “smart” rubbish skips had the potential to improve productivity and sustainability in Alice Springs.

“The idea is to fit electronic sensors to a set of commercial waste bins, which would transmit data about the volume and weight of the contents to waste management authorities and the skip operator,” Dr Mathur said. “With better data, they’ll be equipped to make better decisions on issues such as short-term scheduling, as well as inform them of long-term trends.” Dr Mathur said the aim of the project was to improve efficiencies within the construction industry. Read more.....

ntg granta

CDU helps build NT’s renewable energy future

04 December 2017

The Northern Territory Government is harnessing CDU’s expertise in renewable energy in three research and development projects valued at $1.1 million. Minister for Environment and Natural Resources, Lauren Moss announced at the weekend funding for projects that would help the NT use renewable energy to deliver secure, reliable and affordable power.

Deputy Vice-Chancellor Research and Research Training Professor Lawrence Cram welcomed the university’s role in solving problems related to energy in the Territory. “These projects are prime examples of how knowledge that is developed by the Northern Territory’s university can be accessed for the benefit of the whole community,” Professor Cram said. Read full story here

Indigenous researcher Gotha

Indigenous researcher is NT’s senior of the year

20 November 2017

A senior elder who has worked as an educator and researcher in her community for more than five decades is this year’s Northern Territory Senior Australian of the Year.

Kathy Guthadjaka, also known as Gotha, is a senior elder from Gäwa, a small family community on Elcho Island in East Arnhem Land. Warramiri, the language spoken in Gawa, is endangered. Working as an educator since the mid-1960s, Ms Guthadjaka’s research spans Warramiri language, knowledge, culture and country, and more widely, Aboriginal education, both-ways education, spirituality, identity and religion. A part-time Senior Research Fellow at the Northern Institute at CDU, Ms Guthadjaka is dedicated not only to preserving traditional knowledge, but also to sharing this knowledge with the greater global community. Read full story here

Dr Andrew Taylor Roadshow

Roadshow to reveal NT’s population future

24 November 2017

Population experts will tour the Northern Territory to update communities on what the future may hold based on the 2016 Census data. Led by demographic researchers from the Northern Institute at Charles Darwin University, with members of the Australian Bureau of Statistics, the team will travel to Darwin, Alice Springs and Katherine to deliver region-specific seminars as part of the Territory Population Roadshow. Senior demographer Dr Andrew Taylor said that every five years the Census provided a base to paint a picture of what the NT population looked like and was vital information for planning the NT’s future.

“Population growth is crucial to the Territory and much has changed,” Dr Taylor said. Read more...


Roadshow to reveal NT’s population future

20 November 2017

Population experts will tour the Northern Territory to update communities on what the future may hold based on the 2016 Census data. Led by demographic researchers from the Northern Institute at Charles Darwin University, with members of the Australian Bureau of Statistics, the team will travel to Darwin, Alice Springs and Katherine to deliver region-specific seminars as part of the Territory Population Roadshow.

Senior demographer Dr Andrew Taylor said that every five years the Census provided a base to paint a picture of what the NT population looked like and was vital information for planning the NT’s future. “Population growth is crucial to the Territory and much has changed,” Dr Taylor said. Read more....

Yolngu Studies Lecturer Brenda Muthamuluwuy

Indigenous language school set for Sydney

17 November 2017

Plans are well advanced for the first Indigenous Languages Summer School, which will be run from Charles Darwin University’s Sydney Centre early in the New Year. Yolngu Studies Lecturer Brenda Muthamuluwuy said CDU was working with the Australian National University to offer three fully accredited units from 8 January.

“It will be the perfect opportunity to begin learning an Indigenous language or to develop an understanding of the linguistics that underpins Indigenous language work,” Ms Muthamuluwuy said. “Options will include an introduction to Yolngu Languages and Culture, a beginner’s course for Gamilaraay Language and an introductory linguistics unit, each of which will be offered as two-week intensives.”

Ms Muthamuluwuy and fellow CDU language lecturer Yasunori Hayashi will co-present the Yolngu unit, which will give students a basic grounding in Dhuwala (one of a number of Yolngu languages), including the sounds, grammar and a basic vocabulary, as well as an introduction to various aspects of kinship, songs, art and ceremonies. Read more...

NT Senior Australian of the Year Gotha & Ruth

Indigenous researcher is NT’s senior of the year

16 November 2017

A senior elder who has worked as an educator and researcher in her community for more than five decades is this year’s Northern Territory Senior Australian of the Year. Kathy Guthadjaka, also known as Gotha, is a senior elder from Gäwa, a small family community on Elcho Island in East Arnhem Land. Warramiri, the language spoken in Gawa, is endangered. Working as an educator since the mid-1960s, Ms Guthadjaka’s research spans Warramiri language, knowledge, culture and country, and more widely, Aboriginal education, both-ways education, spirituality, identity and religion.

A part-time Senior Research Fellow at the Northern Institute at CDU, Ms Guthadjaka is dedicated not only to preserving traditional knowledge, but also to sharing this knowledge with the greater global community. Read more...

Australian of the Year 2018

NI researcher wins !

16 November 2017

At the 2018 NT Australian of the Year awards, held at Darwin Waterfront Convention Centre 15 November, East Arnhem Land educator, pioneering academic & Northern Institute senior researcher Gotha (Kathy Guthadjaka) was named NT Senior Australian of the Year. Gotha, a Gawa elder, was recognised for her work creating a bilingual educational model that delivered high attendance and graduation rates on Elcho Island. Gotha has represented Australia at the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child in Geneva and works as a Yolngu researcher with Northern Institute examining language, traditional knowledge, culture and country.

Gotha received the award from NT Administrator Her Honour Vicki O'Halloran and was congratulated by Chief Minister Michael Gunner. Upon accepting the award she was asked by MC Richard Margetson “What’s your advice to others wanting to make a difference?” she gave her response in her traditional language Warramiri “When you work, keep a clear vision and pathway and your work will make a difference”.

Gotha’s daughter Bettina Danganbarr also won a 2018 NT Australian of the Year award in the NT Local Hero category for her work on Elcho Island as an indigenous youth leader. Bettina has offered her home as a safe haven to dozens of domestic violence victims in her role as an Aboriginal Community Police Officer in the East Arnhem community of Galiwin'ku. Bettina also established the Galiwin'ku Women's Space, a community-led initiative addressing family violence, and trains other Police Officers to understand Yolgnu culture.

Gotha and Bettina will head to the national awards in Canberra on January 25 where the 2018 Australian of the Year will be announced.

Rebecca (Beck) Hardwick

Realist Approaches to Ethnography Workshop

03 November 2017

Rebecca (Beck) Hardwick, a PhD student at the University of Exeter Medical School, visited CDU as part of a week of work building collaborations between CDU and overseas universities. Rebecca ran a workshop at the Northern Institute on the use of ethnographic methods in realist research and evaluation. The workshop explored the benefits of an overarching realist methodology (that is, one concerned with explanation and theory development), and how ethnographic data collection methods and data (observation/field notes respectively) lend themselves to thinking about causation and explanation.

After introductions to both realism and ethnography, participants spent some time 'out in the field' at CDU to do some observation and data collection. This led to a discussion about 'how do social spaces on campus work, for whom, in what circumstances, and why. Participants reported enjoying the time to reflect on and discuss methods and methodologies in research. 

For further info:  @rjlhardwick

Strengthening collaboration with Saskatchewan University

Strengthening collaboration with Saskatchewan University

03 November 2017

Following the successful international realist conference in Brisbane in October, a team of Canadian realist researchers came to Darwin to work on strengthening existing collaboration between CDU and Saskatchewan University.

“Saskatchewan and the Northern Territory share some common challenges, including large geographic spaces, remote isolated populations, and the impacts of colonisation on Indigenous populations,” said Dr Gary Groot, leader of the Saskatchewan delegation.

During their visit, the team presented realist research on shared decision making (SDM) between health service providers and Indigenous cancer patients and their families in a workshop for CDU and Menzies staff. Plans for the future include collaborative research projects, teaching exchanges in realist methodology for post-graduate students, adjunct relationships for staff and HDR student partnerships.

“We learn about ourselves by seeing ourselves through other's eyes and by seeing how places that face similar challenges have developed and think about policy development, implementation and evaluation,” said Dr Groot.

REC-IER report

New Report released

2 November 2017

The Indigenous Contemporary Knowledge & Governance research group at Northern Institute have released a report on their research developing Indigenous-led engagement practices in several remote NT communities. The Remote Engagement Coordination – Indigenous Evaluation Research (REC-IER) project was funded through the NTG Department of Housing and Community Development. The aim of the research was to develop community specific strategies for evaluating the engagement and coordination performance of government in the four project locations – Galiwin’ku, Ngukurr, Ntaria and Ali Curung. The team worked on the project in conjunction with local Indigenous researchers from each of the project locations, and a Steering Group from government. Their methods involved working under the guidance of Elders in each of the project sites, and working collaboratively with small teams of local Indigenous researchers.

Local project teams initially developed means for consulting with other community members, listening to their stories and learning about what was important in their engagement with government. Beyond this, they have also developed site specific means for giving feedback to government on their engagement, including through ongoing community consultation, engagement scorecards, and use of video footage. 

Read the report
Visit the REC-IER website

Cathy Bow

Linguists digitise 1970s children's storybooks to help preserve Indigenous languages

30 October 2017

ABC Radio Darwin story by Jesse Thompson

Few people involved in the Indigenous language storybook programs of the 1970s could have realised how precious the books would be decades later.
During this time, bilingual education programs were rolled out in remote schools throughout the Northern Territory, allowing schoolchildren to read and write in their native languages before transitioning to reading and writing in English. Thousands of unique, entry-level children's books, often based on local stories and illustrated by local artists, were created in Indigenous languages. Read more

CDU student Anita Maertens

New study to explore why NT hooks German migrants

27 October 2017

A German-born Charles Darwin University postgraduate student is embarking on a study to discover why her countrymen and women come to the Northern Territory – and what makes them stay. Anita Maertens, who is enrolled in a Master of Public Policy, said she found adventure and work experience when she arrived in Darwin a decade ago.

“I wanted to come to an exciting place for experience in the information services sector, such as libraries and archives, before going to study in London,” she said. read more....

Dr Andrew Taylor

NI announces 2017 NT Demography Roadshow

24 October 2017

Population change & growth is crucial to the Territory and much has changed. Armed with new 2016 Census data, demographic researchers from CDU’s Northern Institute and their international colleagues have organised a dedicated Territory Population Roadshow. Dr Andrew Taylor from NI’s Demography & Growth planning research team announced this week that the roadshow will travel across the Northern Territory to update Territorians on trends, implications and future directions for the NT, it’s towns and beyond.
The roadshow is FREE and coming to a Territory town near you – find out more, read the program and register at the NT Demography Roadshow website HERE

Dr Yulia

University of Sarjanawiyata Tamansi visits CDU

18 October 2017

peration and Public Relation Affairs, English Language Department, University of Sarjanawiyata Tamansiswa (UST) visited Northern Institute in October to meet with Senior Executives to explore partnership opportunities between Charles Darwin University and the UST in the areas of research and study. Dr Yulia also presented for the Northern Institute People.Policy.Place Seminar series during her stay. Her presentation entitled ‘An Evaluation of English Language Teaching Programs In Indonesian Junior High Schools In The Yogyakarta Province’ was recorded and can be viewed on Northern Institute’s Vimeo Channel HERE

Fiona Shalley

Northern Institute welcomes Fiona Shalley to the team

09 October 2017

With a previous career spanning more than 20 years with the Australian Bureau of Statistics, Fiona Shalley is an experienced data practitioner. Fiona has particular interest in data about and for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, being the immediate past Director of the National Centre for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Statistics.

Fiona has also worked previously with the CDU Office of the Pro Vice Chancellor – Indigenous Leadership, on Indigenous student access to higher education, and has co-authored a report providing a statistical overview of Aboriginal adult English literacy and numeracy skills in the Northern Territory. Fiona joins NI’s Demography & Growth planning team and is currently working with Dr Tom Wilson on evaluating people’s understanding and use of population forecasts and investigating the best ways to communicate uncertainty in sub national population forecasting. Read more about Fiona’s work HERE

Prof Ruth & John Lesli

Professor John Leslie visit to Northern Institute

29 September 2017

Professor John Leslie is a Distinguished Professor at Kansas State University (K-State) and a Fulbright Alumni. He recently visited CDU to explore partnership opportunities between Charles Darwin University and K-State in the areas of research and study. K-State is recognised annually by the Princeton Review as one of America’s best colleges and currently offers two Australian Fulbright scholarships:

  • Fulbright Distinguished Chair in Agriculture and Life Sciences
  • Fulbright Senior Scholarship

During his visit Professor Leslie presented a Northern Institute People.Policy.Place Seminar about the Fulbright Scholarship process and writing a successful application with Professor Ruth Wallace. For more information about the seminar go to FB event page. To apply for a Fulbright Scholarships visit

Ilonka GuseStudy seeks views on retirement policy

28 September 2017

A Charles Darwin University researcher will explore how local economies and ethnic backgrounds influence the views of older Australians on proposed policies to keep them in the workforce longer. PhD candidate Ilonka Guse will interview workers aged between 55 and 65 in Darwin and Melbourne, from diverse cultural and socio-economic backgrounds, for a critical review of potential responses to retirement policy.
“Previous studies identify financial wellbeing, health, and age discrimination in the workplace and a lack of suitable jobs as factors that influence people’s retirement intentions,” Ms Guse said. Read more...

Prof. Rolf

Overhaul needed to fix NT’s urban bias, academic says

26 September 2017

A Charles Darwin University academic will propose that Darwin should be partitioned off from the rest of the Northern Territory as part of a solution to achieve better fiscal equity in the NT. Professorial Research Fellow Rolf Gerritsen, an Alice Springs based regional economist with CDU’s Northern Institute, will tell delegates at the NTCOSS Conference in Darwin this week that the Territory’s political and institutional structures need to be overhauled in order to remedy the urban bias, which he says has characterised fiscal policy in the NT since self-government.
“If we are serious about a fairer and more inclusive Northern Territory then it is time that our governance structures are reformed to allow for a better distribution of the budget to remote and regional communities,” Professor Gerritsen said. Read full story HERE

Prof. Rolf

Overhaul needed to fix NT’s urban bias

25 September 2017

A Charles Darwin University academic will propose that Darwin should be partitioned off from the rest of the Northern Territory as part of a solution to achieve better fiscal equity in the NT. Professorial Research Fellow Rolf Gerritsen, an Alice Springs based regional economist with CDU’s Northern Institute, will tell delegates at the NTCOSS Conference in Darwin tomorrow [26 Sep] that the Territory’s political and institutional structures need to be overhauled in order to remedy the urban bias, which he says has characterised fiscal policy in the NT since self-government.

“If we are serious about a fairer and more inclusive Northern Territory then it is time that our governance structures are reformed to allow for a better distribution of the budget to remote and regional communities,” Professor Gerritsen said. Read more...

Whole of Community Engagement initiative

Call for policy on Indigenous English language literacy

25 September 2017

A stark new report that reveals many Indigenous adults in the Northern Territory lack the English language skills to function independently in the workplace has been presented to policy-makers in Canberra. CDU researchers sourced data from multiple agencies for a statistical overview, after Indigenous leaders in six remote communities raised concerns about a lack of responsibility for policy direction in the adult English language and literacy space. Project leader Allison Stewart said there was no comprehensive evidence base, on which to build holistic policy responses despite more than half of Indigenous people in the NT speaking English as an additional language. “This report describes the situation in the NT as best we can,” she said. “Indigenous people make up 30 per cent of the NT population and are highly significant to economic development and cultural richness.”

Statistics expert and report co-author Fiona Shalley said more than 85 per cent of a sample group of 660 Indigenous adults did not have the literacy skills to operate independently in tertiary education or the workplace. “This could translate into a large number across the board,” she said. The project was driven by the findings of a Federal Government-funded Whole of Community Engagement initiative, led by CDU, at Galiwin’ku, Yirrkala, Gunbalanya, Maningrida, Tennant Creek and Yuendumu. Read more...

Heat Stress research

Heat Stress research showcased to Darwin audience

22 September 2017

Over 45 people came together last Friday at CDU Waterfront campus to hear about the current research on Heat Stress, Heat Mitigation and Climate Impacts in Darwin. The event was an initiative of the Darwin City Deal partnership between the Northern Territory Government, City of Darwin & Charles Darwin University and showcased a panel of research representatives from CSIRO, the Bureau of Meteorology, Northern Territory Government and Northern Institute. 

Northern Institute Research Fellow, Dr Elspeth Oppermann, presented on her work with the Heat Stress Research Partnership (HSRP).  HSRP was formed in response to a shared concern about the challenge Heat Stress posed to the safety, health and wellbeing of the workforce in the region, particularly during the ‘Build-up’ and Wet season. View the Heat Stress event pics HERE.

Due to the popularity of the event another presentation is being planned in Darwin before the end of the year.  Keep an eye on Northern Institute social media for details.

Amy award story

NI student wins 'International Student of the Year'

22 September 2017

We are delighted to announce Amy Zhang, one of our Master of Public Policy students, took out 'International Student of the Year' at the Chief Minister's Export & Industry Awards held in Darwin September 21  

Congratulations Amy!

Ruth & Dany

Radio National Interview with Adjunct Professor Dany Adone

19 September 2017

NI Adjunct Professor Dany Adone recently visited and presented on her Indigenous Sign Languages research. While in Darwin, Dany also spoke with Radio National's Paul Barclay about her work and the complexity of Indigenous Sign Languages of Northern Australia. Listen to the interview HERE.

Since 2013 Professor Adone has been a University Professorial Fellow affiliated with the Northern Institute (CDU). Professor Adone is currently the Head of the School of Modern Languages and Cultures and the Head of the Department of English at the University of Cologne, Germany. She also holds the Chair of Applied English Linguistics and is the Director of the Australian Studies Program (Linguistics) in the English Department. She is also a Honorary Professor at the University of Seychelles. Professor Adone visits Northern Institute annually to present on her current research.

Dr Heather GibbOlder Territorians face lack of support

11 September 2017

People ageing in remote communities of the Northern Territory are facing issues such as lack of access to suitable home support and home-care services despite recommendations of an inquiry to improve such services, new research has discovered.
Charles Darwin University Northern Institute research fellow Dr Heather Gibb surveyed residents of three ex-mining towns between Katherine and Darwin to inform her research titled “Five years on from the Inquiry: Caring for older Australians, what is the viability of ageing in remote places, in Australia?”.
“It is widely acknowledged that people in rural and in particular, remote places, are not well supported with services to age-in-place,” Dr Gibb said. Read more...

Fiona ShalleyIndigenous higher ed trends under microscope

07 September 2017

Researchers have received a $40,000 grant to investigate factors that influence Indigenous university student completion rates, and determine if institutions should adjust generic policies to provide more individual support.
CDU senior research fellow Fiona Shalley will lead the study of Indigenous student cohorts from Charles Darwin University and Central Queensland University, collecting data dating back to 2005 to identify potential trends.
“We will particularly focus on where regional students come from – our results will be used to investigate whether assumptions made by Indigenous higher education policy should be applied broadly, or should be more nuanced to suit specific circumstances,” Ms Shalley said.
Ms Shalley will join the Northern Institute, to research remote area population forecasts, this month. Read full story HERE

Prof Rolf

Scholars to probe flaws and failings of Western thought

04 September 2017

Charles Darwin University will explore the limitations of Western thought with the help of two eminent European intellectuals at a public event at Alice Springs campus next week.
Northern Institute Professorial Research Fellow Rolf Gerritsen said the panel discussion would be the first of three events in Australia this month, presented by the prestigious Goethe-Institut.
“We are delighted to be assisting the Goethe-Institut with their project ‘Responsibility and Humanity – Nature, Culture and Terror’, which is investigating several philosophical questions that have the capacity to challenge and move society,” Professor Gerritsen said. Read more...

Prof DanyLinguist to explore Indigenous sign language

31 August 2017

A linguist with more than 20 years expertise in alternate sign languages will talk on the importance of the communication system in Indigenous communities, aiming to raise awareness and dispel many of the misconceptions around it.
Charles Darwin University Professorial Fellow Dany Adone will present seminars on alternate sign languages and Bimodal Bilingualism (speech-sign) at the Northern Institute on Friday, 1 September.
“Alternate sign languages are different from primary sign languages in that they are used by hearing people as an alternate mode of communication,” Professor Adone said. read more...

NIM award 2017And the NIMA goes to…

18 August 2017

Congratulations to Linda Barwick, Allan Marett and Lysbeth Ford for winning the 2017 National Indigenous Music Award – Traditional category for the ‘Wangga: Complete CD Set’. Dr Linda Ford and daughter Emily happily accepted the award on the trio’s behalf. The CD set  includes recordings of Linda’s Wangga family who are from the Daly/Waigat region of the NT. A small component of the Wangga recordings were for Linda’s Australian Research Council Grant ‘New ways for old ceremonies: an archival research project’ – read about the project
To purchase the ‘Wangga: Complete CD Set’ please visit HERE

Prof. Rolf G

Is stopping the FIFO workforce viable for the Territory?

16 August 2017

Professor Rolf Gerritsen talks to Kate O'Toole on ABC Darwin Radio ‘Drive’ about the Chief Minister's call for the mining industry to stop 'Fly in Fly out' workforce. To listen CLICK HERE and forward to 1:21:40 to listen.

Ruth, Fullbright scholarFulbright scholar brings home ideas to secure futures

14 August 2017

A returning Fulbright scholar has likened the Northern Territory to communities in the state of Kansas in the United States, saying that with shared challenges also lay shared solutions.
Northern Institute Director Professor Ruth Wallace was the first woman to be awarded the Fulbright Distinguished Chair in Agriculture and Life Sciences Scholarship and recently concluded a six-month residency at Kansas State University. Read more...

CDU Garma 2017

CDU turns out in force at Garma Festival

14 August 2017

A strong contingent of staff and students attended the 2017 Garma Festival in Gulkula, Arnhem Land, to showcase the university’s commitment to Indigenous education, research and engagement. The team from the Office of the Pro Vice-Chancellor Indigenous Leadership, Northern Institute, School of Indigenous Knowledges and Public Policy, and VET held a swag rolling competition, offered Yolngu language sessions and spoke about Indigenous research partnerships such as the Gurruwilyun Yolngu Seasonal Calendar. Read more.....

Garma 2017

GARMA 2017

4-7 August 2017

Northern Institute were part of a CDU delegation, headed by Vice Chancellor Professor Simon Maddocks, who attended Garma 2017 on Arnhem Land in early August. The newly appointed Pro Vice-Chancellor of Indigenous Leadership, Adrian Miller, two new Northern Institute academics Professor Barry Judd and Professor Steven Bird and our Director Professor Ruth Wallace were part of the delegation at the festival. This year CDU had a double marquee and featured a mobile teaching unit camper trailer set up by VET Lecturer/Workplace Assessor in Tourism & Guiding, Chris Hogarth. Chris also ran a swag rolling competition which was very popular amongst the kids – the prize being a swag. The stall was always busy with Nori (Yasunori) Hayashi & Brenda Muthamuluwuy from the School of Indigenous Knowledges and Public Policy presenting daily Yolngu language classes. Northern Institute promoted their research with Indigenous communities and sold Senior Indigenous Researcher Gotha’s (Kathy Guthadjaka) Gawa Seasonal Poster as well as her Flowers & Fruits poster. Throughout the long, hot, dusty days our very talented CDU Indigenous student ambassador Mark Munnich and Indigenous Student Services officer Jessica Procak plus Melissa Royle from the Office of Indigenous Leadership provided lots of advice to prospective students. It was a privilege for NI staff to be part of the CDU team once again and an amazing opportunity to be on such magical country. Garma 2017 is hosted, coordinated and programmed in entirety by the Yothu Yindi Foundation (YYF), a not-for-profit Aboriginal corporation.

View more pics of Garma

Dr April Petillo

US academic to share nation building successes

31 July 2017

A visiting American academic will bring stories of Indigenous hope and capacity building to a seminar at Alice Springs campus this week [Aug 3]. Kansas State University Assistant Professor of American Ethnic Studies Dr April Petillo will discuss Native Nation Building theory and the efforts of several US native nations who have increased their capacity for self-governance, self-determination, sustainable community and economic development. “The presentation will consider how this theory has been applied in social service settings and public policy arenas,” Dr Petillo said.
“The idea of rebuilding native and indigenous capacities through culturally appropriate and effective governance institutions resonates well when addressing social issues. This is relevant for indigenous communities beyond the US, as well.” Read more...

Dr Kerstin Zander

First NT researcher receives prestigious fellowship

31 July 2017

A Charles Darwin University academic is the first Northern Territory-based researcher to be awarded a prestigious Humboldt Fellowship to further her research into climate change impacts and adaptation. Northern Institute senior research fellow Dr Kerstin Zander was one of about 500 scientists and scholars world-wide to receive the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation Fellowship this year to conduct research in Germany in 2018/2019. The fellowship will enable her to carry out research for 12 months in Germany and collaborate with researchers in Bonn and Berlin.

“My main host for the Fellowship will be Professor Dirk Messner, Director of the German Development Institute in Bonn, where I will continue my research into the economic and social impacts of climate and people’s adaptation strategies,” Dr Zander said. Read more....

Census Data Seminar

Darwin 2016 Census Data Seminar Hosted By Northern Institute

26 July 2017

Northern Institute hosted the 2016 Census Data Seminar in Darwin  at CDU Casuarina campus Wednesday 26 July 2-5pm. The seminar was one of many held across Australia revealing what the 2016 Census of Population and Housing tells us about ourselves, our communities and Australia.
The Darwin 2016 Census Data Seminar included a 45-minute overview of the 2016 census results, key findings specific to the Northern Territory and information about understanding the census data. In addition Australian Bureau of Statistics data specialists were available to provide support and guidance after the event. Nearly 100 people attended the event which was webcast live and recorded – you can view the Darwin presentation at this LINK

Welcome back Ruth

Welcome back, Ruth!

25 July 2017

It was wonderful to have lots of colleagues and friends join us for a morning tea today to welcome back NI Director, Professor Ruth Wallace to CDU. Ruth presented Professor Lisa McManus with a beautiful artisan made Raku pot to thank her for Acting as Director while she spent 6 months at Kansas State University studying for her Fulbright Scholarship. Ruth will be giving a presentation about her trip to the Unites States 2.30pm August 17 – keep an eye on social media for more details & to RSVP. View more pics of the event here

Bridging the gap in water knowledge

Bridging the gap in water knowledge

17 July 2017

Researchers are helping to bridge cultural and language knowledge gaps in a project to improve community participation in water management in remote communities.
Northern Institute education Professor Michael Christie and School of Indigenous Knowledges and Public Policy Yolngu studies coordinator Yasunori Hayashi are leading the community engagement and Indigenous knowledge section of the ARC Linkage funded project.
The collaborative project, titled “Cross-cultural management of freshwater on resource-constrained islands”, aims to develop methods for community-led adaptive water management on the resource-constrained island of Yurrwi (Milingimbi). Read more....

Why are Territorians losing their religion?

Why are Territorians losing their religion?

13 July 2017

Northern Institute Demographer, Dr Andrew Taylor, talks to ABC Darwin Radio’s Lyrella Cochrane about why Territorians are losing their religion. Click on link to listen to the interview

Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven

A meeting with Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven

7 July 2017

Swedish Prime Minister, Stefan Löfven, visited the Centre for Rural Medicine (CRM) in Storuman, Sweden, last week and NI researcher Professor Dean Carson and his wife Doris took advantage of this unique opportunity to talk about the research partnership between CRM and Charles Darwin University, including prospects for expanding the partnership in the future. Prime Minister Löfven was interested to hear about the value of student and researcher exchanges and gains made over the past three years of the program.  The Prime Minister visited CRM as part of a summer tour of the provinces of Sweden – read more about his tour 

NI celebrates ‘Why Our Languages Matter’ in NAIDOC Week 2017

6 July 2017

NAIDOC event

Over 65 people attend our NAIDOC ‘Why Our Languages Matter’ event at Northern Institute on Wednesday 5 July. Special guest Indigenous educator Dr Waymamba Gaykamangu had a captive audience when presenting about ‘Why Matha (Yolngu Languages) Matter,” where she explained some of the complexities of Yolngu language and culture. It was wonderful to see everyone take advantage of the afternoon break to have a cuppa & chat on the breezeway, and most importantly, make connections. There was a display by Cathy Bow, from the ‘Living Archive of Aboriginal Languages’ and Steven Bird of ‘Treasure Languages’ who talked to guests about their projects promoting Indigenous languages. After the break we heard from other speakers including Linda Ford, Kathy Guthadjaka, Yirrininba Dhurrkay, Richard Fejo, and others who shared about why their Indigenous languages matter. Even among those who no longer know their traditional language for various reasons, all agreed that language was integral for identity and for understanding cultures. Several speakers made the point that the younger generation needs to learn their own languages to keep them alive and thriving.
The event was recorded and will be uploaded to our Vimeo channel shortly. To view pictures of the event visit our Facebook page at

Tbusiness awards


5 July 2017

Northern Territory Veterinary Services (NTVS) won the Small Business Award at the Telstra Business Awards held on July 4. NTVS are one of NI's Industry partners. Dr Sam McMahon started NTVS 23 years ago in Katherine. She and business partner Dr Alex Burleigh now operate 2 veterinary clinics - 1 in Katherine and 1 in Alice Springs as well as providing services to remote Indigenous Communities. Sam and Alex have produced a number of research papers published in the Australian Veterinary Journal and are working with the Northern Institute to expand research into the human/animal pathogen interface.
See more pics here

Australian populationIntroducing a new publication from Northern Institute 'Australian Population Studies'

30 June 2017

NI's Tom Wilson recently announced that Australian Population Studies will commence publication in November. Australian Population Studies is an open-access, peer-reviewed journal containing short, high-quality papers on Australian population issues. It is published by the Northern Institute, with CDU Library providing web hosting. The scope of the journal spans the full range of topics in demography and population studies, but contributions should focus on Australia and be written for a wide-ranging readership. In additional to regular research papers, the journal will also feature DemoGraphics, data visualisations, and Introductory Guides, introductions to methods, theories, or data for postgraduate students. There are no publication fees. read more....

Prof. Steven Bird

Language technology expert joins CDU

30 June 2017

A researcher living at a remote Northern Territory outstation to deepen his cultural understanding and develop new technology to preserve Indigenous languages has joined Charles Darwin University.
Professor Steven Bird is a social and technological researcher with an interest in the evolution of the world's languages and has joined the Northern Institute. Professor Bird is currently based at Kabulwarnamyo Outstation, in West Arnhem Land, to learn Kunwinjku language and begin conducting studies into its vitality. read full story here

Dr Tom Wilson

Territory Population Report

28 June 2017

How has the Territory’s population changed over the last few years & what factors are driving population change?  Northern Institute Demographer, Dr Tom Wilson, shares his findings taken from the latest Australian Bureau of Statistics population figures. View a Territory Population Update report here:

5 key points about NT’s population

5 key points about NT’s population

27 June2017

With the release of new 2016 Census data, and accompanying population estimates, here are five key points you need to know about the Northern Territory from NI Demographer Dr Andrew Taylor. Read the article HERE

Prof. Ruth in Kansas

Fulbright scholar notes similarities in regional development between Kansas, Australia

24 June 2017

Australian Fulbright Scholar Ruth Wallace says there are a lot of similarities in regional development between Kansas communities and her home country. MANHATTAN, Kan. —Though they are half a world apart, Ruth Wallace thinks her home in Australia isn’t too much different from many communities in the state of Kansas.
“I have found a lot of similarities here on issues about what the future looks like and who will be doing the work when you’ve got change,” said Wallace, the director of the Northern Institute at Charles Darwin University, who will complete a six-month Fulbright Scholarship in July at Kansas State University.
Wallace’s stay in Manhattan has included a lot of travel around the state to study changing demographics, economic development, workforce development, social policy and how governments make decisions, and other issues. read full story...

Dean and Doris Carson 2017

Umea University highlights NI Demographer Dean Carson

9 June 2017

'Think.' is a magazine & website by Umea University. Their latest publication includes an article about Professor Dean Carson, from NI"s Demography & Growth planning team, and his wife Doris who not only research sparsely populated areas...they live in them!  Read the full article

Realist Evaluation Training group picRealist Evaluation Training

8 June 2017

The Northern Institute's Realist Research, Evaluation and Learning Initiative (RREALI) led by A/Prof Emma Williams and Dr Gill Westhorp has been conducting training this week on realist research and evaluation methods with researchers who have expertise in research with remote Indigenous communities. Participants came from IPSOS, Prime Minister and Cabinet, CDU and the community sector.  Read more about our Evaluation work

Book LaunchCongratulations Don!

7 June 2017

Dr Don Zoellner’s book ‘Vocational Education and Training: The Northern Territory’s history of public philanthropy’ was launched by Pro Vice Chancellor LEBA Professor Peter Kell on June 7 in the lovely surrounds of the Northern Territory Library at Parliament House.  35 people spanning education, industry and government attended the event which was followed by a really informative Q&A session.  You can download the book for FREE at ANU Press. View  the book launch pics

GlasshouseGlasshouse Workshop in Darwin

25 May 2017

Recently, Northern Institute facilitated the first of two Glasshouse workshops in Darwin at the CDU Waterfront campus.  These workshops, sponsored by the NTG Department of Trade Business and Innovation are run to enable Northern Territory women entrepreneurs, scientists and engineers to test and build the business case for their ideas, products and services, and research to create value for the marketplace and science. Professor Isabelle Skinner (Member of NI) and Professor Cathy Robinson (Director, Northern Australian Research Alliance at NI)  ran the first workshop which brought together 23 researchers/scientists and local business women.  The next workshop will be held in Alice Springs Wednesday 14 June.  To find out more and to register visit the Glasshouse Workshop webpage

LoRa NetworkLoRa Workshop

22 May 2017

This LoRa Workshop brought together stakeholders from municipal associations, government agencies and CDU University to explore the opportunities and challenges with engaging with the provision, regulation and use of wireless infrastructure. Northern Institute’s goal is to construct a web-based application to map migration flows in order to improve government services in contexts of high mobility, including in remote Australia and for Indigenous Australians. We are currently working on a project with paring the Wi-Fi with a LoRa (Long-Range WAN) network to enable data collection for a range of usages.
For more information about this project please contact Stephen Neale, Senior Research Fellow - Development and Innovation on email or 8946 7468, See our FaceBook album for more pics.

Ground Endi. Workshop

Ground Up Indigenous Evaluators Workshop

27 April 2017

The Ground Up Indigenous Evaluators Workshop was held from19-20th April, 2017 at the Northern Institute, Charles Darwin University. Senior Indigenous researchers and junior mentorees came to NI and Several generations of researchers worked together to design mentoring and evaluation services products. See more photos...

Dr Supriya

Red hot Alice puts mums and bubs at risk

24 April 2017

The projected rise in Central Australia’s future temperature may pose an increased health risk to women in the late stages of pregnancy, a Charles Darwin University researcher has warned. In a paper published in the current edition of International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, lead author Dr Supriya Mathew said researchers had identified a statistically important link between premature births and extreme heat.
“We focused the study on Alice Springs, which has a high preterm delivery rate relative to the rest of Australia,” Dr Mathew said.
“Of the (almost) 17,000 single natural births at Alice Springs Hospital between 1986 and 2013, about 9 per cent (1401) were premature. Read more...


Vilhelmina (Sweden) Rotary Club Welcome NI Researchers

3 April 2017

On March 7 the Rotary Club of Vilhelmina, Sweden invited Northern  Institute researchers to present on their demography research. NI HDR student Ana Vuin talked about her thesis on migration and population decline in the remotest parts of Australia, Croatia and Sweden. The study raises the question why people move and what it is that remains. Ana has worked in Vilhelmina and interviewed people across Sweden in Latikberg, Järvsjöby and Dalasjö.Besides Ana, Northern Institutes Professor Dean Carson and also Ramona Mahringer presented. The titles of the evening lectures were:

  • The future of small villages - Dean Carson
  • What makes a good village? - Ramona Mahringer
  • Migration against the tide - Ana Vuin

The Vilhelmina Rotary club have since commented they found the presentations very interesting and were appreciated by both club members and invited guests. You can read about Ana’s research here

National RIRDC Rural Women’s Awards

National RIRDC Rural Women’s Awards

31 March 2017

NI were delighted to attend the National RIRDC Rural Women’s Awards at Parliament House this week where Kate Peake won the NT Award. Pictured are members of NT Women in Seafood and Women in Primary Industries.
From left to right, Cheryl Owens, Last year’s NT winner Martina Matzer, Marianne St Clair (Northern Institute & NT Director Women’s Industry Network Seafood Community (WINSC)), Rachel from Rachel’s Seafood Shack, Carmel Ball – Darwin Fishmarkets, and Debbie van der Rijt – RIRDC National award coordinator.

Ceremony ushers in ‘football’ academic

Ceremony ushers in ‘football’ academic

27 March 2017

New Central Australian scholar Professor Barry Judd has become the first person to be individually welcomed with a smoking ceremony at Charles Darwin University in Alice Springs.
Professor Judd, the recently appointed Northern Institute Professor of Indigenous Social Research, said the event was the “appropriate way to begin” his work as a resident in Arrernte country. “It is important philosophically that we continue to hold traditions like this one,” Professor Judd said. “My research and interest is in Indigenous knowledge systems, and to acknowledge and to participate in them is a critical part of the process.” Read more...

Territory Population Update

Territory Population Update

23 March 2017

New report just released by our Demography & Growth Planning Team.
Population figures just published by the Australian Bureau of Statistics show that the total Estimated Resident Population of the Northern Territory reached 245,657 at the end of September 2016, an increase of 812 over one year earlier. This represents a growth rate of 0.3%. The population of 245,657 gives the Territory a 1.0% share of the national population of 24,220,192. Read the report at our DemographyNORTH Blog

Prof Barry Judd 'Welcome to Country' Smoking Ceremony


Prof Barry Judd 'Welcome to Country' Smoking Ceremony

22 March 2017

NI's Professor Judd was welcomed to country by Arrernte ladies from Akeyulerre including Margaret Scobie, Patricia Webb and Irene Davis at the 'Yarning Circle' on Alice Springs CDU campus 22 March 2017.
The event was proudly MC'ed by Acting Director Prof LIsa McManus and attended by by a crowd of students and staff. See more photos

Steven Bird PPP

Language Engineering in the Field’ Seminar

17 March 2017

Over 25 people attended a recent seminar, held at NI, by Indigenous Endangered Language expert and NI Adjunct Professor Steven Bird.  The seminar entitled ‘Language Engineering in the Field’ covered the innovations in the revitalisation of endangered languages, and new ways to learn unwritten languages with the aid of social mobile technologies. Professor Bird also presented on his research work designing technologies to help keep Australian Indigenous languages strong, focussing on the Bininj Kunwok community of West Arnhem. To read more about Professor Birds work please visit here & This event was recorded and uploaded to our VIMEO Channel.

iwd 2017Northern Institute celebrates International Women’s Day

9 March 2017

Over 70 guests gathered on CDU campus March 8 for Northern Institute’s annual International Women’s Day event. The morning tea was opened by NI Acting Director Professor Lisa McManus and included special presentations by the NT Anti-Discrimination Commissioner Sally Sievers and Red Cross Voluntary Service Business Partner Andrea Lee. Bilawara Lee, CDU’s Indigenous Academic in Residence provided the Welcome to Country. This years theme was #BeBoldForChange and guests were encouraged to be bold in the workplace and home and continue the journey towards a gender equal society.
This was the seventh year the Northern Institute has held an event celebrating International Women's Day, raising more than $1500 for charity. This year the gold coin donation on entry went to the Red Cross. View our International Women’s Day Photobooth pics & International Women’s Day Event pics

NT Anti-Discrimination Commissioner Sally Sievers

Event to celebrate bold and brave women

06 March 2017

Some of the Northern Territory’s most prominent women will take the stage during International Women’s Day 2017 at Charles Darwin University on Wednesday, 8 March. The event themed #BeBoldForChange asks that people take the ground-breaking action that drives the greatest change for women to forge a better working environment and more gender inclusive world. The event will be held at the Mal Nairn Auditorium at Casuarina campus on Wednesday, 8 March from 9.30am until 11:30. For more information or to register visit here.
Hosted by the Northern Institute at CDU, the event will include special presentations by the  and Red Cross Voluntary Service Business Partner Andrea Lee. Read more

John Dillon Memorial Fellowship Delegation visit NI

John Dillon Memorial Fellowship Delegation visit NI

01 March 2017

Acting Director Professor Lisa McManus hosted five International guests and John Dillon Memorial Fellows at Northern Institute. The delegation were given an outline of current research from NI researchers Dr Kerstin Zander, Dr Marilyn Kell & Dr Opperman. Another fantastic opportunity to promote our research capability & share connections. Thanks to CDU's Research Institute for the Environment and Livelihoods for connecting us. To find out more about the John Dillon Memorial Fellowships and to apply visit here

Governor General & Lady Cosgrove visit to NI 2

Governor General & Lady Cosgrove visit to NI

21 February 2017

Northern Institute were delighted to be part of this visit on CDU campus by the Governor General and Lady Cosgrove hosted by Vice Chancellor Simon Maddocks. This was a unique opportunity to showcase our Northern research capability in particular our work with Indigenous Communities and Plant Biosecurity as well as our Heat Stress Research work. Our Heat Stress research attracted the Governor General due to his long military history and working in tropical climates. Find out more about our Heat Stress work here

International Mother Language Day

International Mother Language Day

21 February 2017

Today is International Mother Language Day & to commemorate NTs finest Indigenous Language Champions gathered to talk about future planning including upcoming conferences and symposia to promote bilingual language education and preservation of Indigenous languages in the Northern Territory. Awesome mob! Click here for more pictures

Barry JuddNI welcomes Professor Barry Judd

13 February 2017

Acting Director Professor Lisa McManus welcomed Professor Judd to NI this week. 

“It gives me great pleasure to welcome Professor Barry Judd to CDU and the Northern Institute. Barry commenced with us today, based at Northern Institute at the Alice Springs campus. Many of you know Barry or know of his research, so you will understand the important contribution Barry will make to the Northern Institute, the Faculty of LEBA and CDU.

For colleagues that aren’t aware of Barry’s research you might be interested in the following link that outlines his current project that he brings to CDU with his ARC Fellowship. Barry is a member of the National Indigenous Research and Knowledges Network (NIRAKN) and his research interests include the social impact of Australian Football on Indigenous Australia; explorations of Australian identity and the process of cultural interchange between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples; constructions of Australian citizenship and Australian nationalism; Aboriginal affairs policy and administration. Please join me in welcoming Barry to the team!” Link to Facebook post

Charles Darwin Debate

Charles Darwin Debate

10 February 2017

Northern Institute staff attended the Charles Darwin Debate ‘Do we need to rethink the theory of evolution?’ held on campus recently. The event was ‘Adjudicated by Tom Pauling AO QC. The Positive team included Professor Martin Carroll (PVC Education & Student Success), Adam Britton (RIEL) & Mel from Radio 104.1 and the Negative team consisted of Professor Lawrence Cram (DVC of Research), Alexandra Murray (Office of Research & Innovation) & the VC & President of CDU Professor Simon Maddocks. The Negatives won...only just! The Positives made a strong case and had the crowd in hysterics... well done to all! 

There was a yummy morning tea held afterwards with lots of discussion - some of us even got photobombed by the VC himself!

Click here to see More pics

Kuntal & Ben

NI Success in Brazil

6 February 2017

Congratulations to NI student Kuntal Goswami who won the Emerging Scholar Award for his paper presentation based on his PhD project at the 13th International Conference on Environmental, Cultural, Economic & Social Sustainability, Niteroi, Brazil. Kuntal travelled with NI Senior Research Fellow Dr Benxiang Zeng who also presented at the conference. Read Kuntal’s abstract here

Prof. Ruth Wallace

Ruth Wallace announced as ‘Territorian to watch in 2017’

15 January 2017

Director, Professor Ruth Wallace was named by NT News as a Territorian expected to make their mark in 2017. In 2016, Ruth Wallace became the first female Australian researcher to be awarded a Fulbright Distinguished Chair in Agriculture and Life Sciences. In a few weeks, the director of the Northen Institute at Charles Darwin University will head to the US to work with researchers at Kansas State University. Her role centres on engaging remote communities in biosecurity surveillance. Read the full story here

Dr Eslpeth

Our Heat Stress Research highlighted on ABC News Broome

29 December 2016

Journalist Erin Parke of ABC News Broome recently covered a story about our Heat Stress research and interviewed Heat Stress Research Partnership coordinator & NI researcher Dr Elspeth Opperman. The Heat Stress Research Partnership (HSRP) formed in response to a shared concern about the challenge Heat Stress posed to the safety, health and wellbeing of the workforce in the region, particularly during the ‘Build-up’ and Wet season.  It links the three northern Group Training Organisations from northern WA, NT and Queensland including GTNT, Kimberley Group Training and Skill360 Australia with research expertise from Northern InstituteMenzies School of Health ResearchJames Cook University and RMIT’s Centre for Urban Research. Watch the ABC story here 

Heat Stress

Top End tradies to swallow tiny thermometers for heat stress experiments

29 December 2016

NI researcher Dr Elspeth Oppermann, coordinator of the Heat Stress Research Partnership speaks to The Guardian about the research into study how local workers and workplaces, in tropical Northern Australia, adapted to working in extreme heat and humidity. Read the full story here.

Read about the Heat Stress Research Partnership research at our website.

Return to the latest NI News

VC Awards 2016

Congratulations to the NI Nominees & Award Winners at the 2016 VC's Awards for Exceptional Performance

28 November 2016

Professor Dean Carson, Winner, Outstanding Individual Researcher
Dr Jackie Gould,
Nominee, Emerging Researcher
Dr Supriya Mathews,
Nominee, Emerging Researcher
Dr Michaela Spencer,
Nominee, Emerging Researcher
NI's Central Australian Research Group,
Nominee, Exceptional Research Team
The VC also presented a 10 year service award to Research Assistant Pawinee Yuhun
Congratulations one and all! Click here for more pics

Tony Barns

NI presents for NAGS Conference

25 November 2016

Northern Institute researcher Tony Barnes presented recently on his research at the National Association for Gambling Studies (NAGS) Conference along with Menzies researchers Matthew Stevens and Maren Thoss. The title of the presentation was : 'Gambling $s in the Northern Territory: is the Territory out of line?'. The conference was held in Cairns Queensland over 3 days from 23-25 November.
The National Association for Gambling Studies Inc. promotes discussion and research into all areas of gambling activity. They have members from the industry, treatment agencies, academics, regulators and gamblers themselves. To find out more about the conference please visit the NAGS website

Indon Embassy visit

Visit by Indonesian Embassy (Canberra)

23 November 2016

Professor Ruth Wallace met with Professor Ronny Rachman Noor, Ir, MRur.Sc, PhD – Education and Cultural Attaché of the Indonesian Embassy Canberra to discuss research partnerships & future collaborations to grow the region. Also taking part in the discussion was Indonesian Consul, Pak Andre Siregar and Ibu Ryan Andriani – Consul for the Information, Social and Cultural Affairs and Shena Damayanti from the office of Information, Social and Cultural Affairs.

Heat Stress- Elspeth

Researchers place spotlight on heat stress

21 November 2016

Employers in Northern Australia can play an important role in a new research program examining heat stress across Australia’s monsoon tropics, says a researcher at Charles Darwin University’s Northern Institute. Dr Elspeth Oppermann said there was widespread acknowledgement that outdoor labour-intensive workers experienced heat stress, but dealing with the problem was hampered by the lack of feasible, regionally appropriate responses. Read the full story by Patrick Nelson.  Read more about the Stress Research Partnership

MPP Information Sessions Dec 2016

Master of Public Policy Information Sessions announced

18 November 2016

NI recently announced it would hold 45 minute information sessions at Northern Instiutte and in the city at the Northern Australia Development Office.  These sessions give prospective students an opportunity to learn more about the Master of Public Policy course, discuss study options and ask questions. The Course Coordinator will provide an overview of the course, how to apply and information on study options. You can register to attend a session here.

Master of Public Policy Information Sessions are scheduled for the following dates:
5.00pm Tuesday 29 November. 
Northern Institute, CDU Casuarina campus Yellow 1.2.48 MAP
3.30pm Thursday 8 December. 
Northern Australian Development Office, 76 The Esplanade, Darwin City MAP
5.00pm Tuesday 7 February. 
Northern Institute, CDU Casuarina campus Yellow 1.2.48 MAP
3.30pm Wednesday 8 February. 
Northern Australian Development Office, 76 The Esplanade, Darwin City MAP

VC and Rolf

Prof. Rolf Gerritsen receives 10 year Long Service Award

17 November 2016

BIG CONGRATULATIONS to NI's Professor Rolf Gerritsen who was presented a 10 year long service award by CDU Vice Chancellor & President Professor Simon Maddocks in Alice Springs last week. Rolf is also featured in the CDU’s latest Bi-annual research magazine Origins(page 24). Share the good news on Facebook and Twitter

Dean Carosn

NI researcher wins prestigious Institute of Public Administration Australia award

04 November 2016

Congratulations to NI's Professor Dean Carson who has jointly won with Dr Adam Walstead (Michigan Technological University) the Sam Richardson Award for the Most Influential Paper: Australian Journal of Public Administration/Institute of Public Administration Australia. The winning article is entitled “Government with a Cast of Dozens: Policy Capacity, Risks and Policy Work in the Northern Territory”. Read the paper

Read the Media Release
Visit the IPAA website

Dr Linda won ARC

Yolngu Cosmology project wins $360K ARC - We Are Celebrating!

01 November 2016

Northern Institute Senior Research Fellow Dr Linda Ford has just been awarded almost $360,000 in funding under the Australian Research Council’s Discovery Indigenous scheme.
Linda’s project will focus on aspects of the Yolngu people in North-east Arnhem Land of the Northern Territory. The project will involve supporting and retaining established Yolngu Australian researchers in traditional ecological environmental knowledge, and improving Yolngu wellbeing and quality of life.
Read the CDU eNews story
Read the NITV story


NI celebrates new book at CDU Waterfront

27 October 2016

50 people joined us to celebrate the launch of ‘Settlements at the Edge: Remote Human Settlements in Developed Nations’ Thursday 27 October, 2016 at the beautiful CDU Waterfront Campus.
The book, which was officially launched by Jodie Ryan, Chief Executive Officer, Department of the Chief Minister, examines the evolution, characteristics, functions and shifting economic basis of settlements in sparsely populated areas of developed nations.
‘Settlements at the Edge’ was edited by Northern Institute researchers Andrew Taylor & Dean Carson + Prescott C. Ensign, Lee Huskey, Rasmus Ole Rasmussen, Gertrude Saxinger.
A chaired panel session concluded the event at which editors and authors discussed and debated key themes in the book. Attendees also took part asking questions and participating in discussions with the panel.
To learn more visit the event webpage or visit the Facebook Album

Demog talk to treasury

NI presents to NT Department of Treasury & Finance

26 October 2016

Our Demography & Growth Planning team along with colleagues & International Demography experts presented a seminar to the NT Dept Treasury and Finance 26 October. What was covered? Everything from the top 3 population issues for the NT, Work on projections ARC, The NT's future population and Change and challenges for small settlements in the north just to name a few. View more pics of the event Here

Heat Stress Partners Wkshop 2016_2NI hosts Heat Stress Research Partnership Workshop

22 October 2016

Northern Australia’s largest employers of apprentices and trainees, Skill360 Australia, GTNT and Kimberley Group Training met with researchers in Darwin 20-21 October to develop a program of research that tackles the problem of heat stress in Northern Australia’s tropical monsoon zone. The meeting was the first of the newly formed Heat Stress Research Partnership. It links the three northern Group Training Organisations from northern WA, NT and Queensland with research expertise from Charles Darwin University’s Northern Institute, Menzies School of Health Research, James Cook University and RMIT’s Centre for Urban Research. Outdoor, labour-intensive workers in northern Australia routinely experience heat stress as a result of environmental heat and humidity. The Partnership formed in response to a shared concern about the challenge this posed to the safety, health and wellbeing of the workforce in the region, particularly during the ‘Build-up’ and Wet season.
Read more about the Stress Research Partnership

Climate-Smart Livestock Project: Central Luzon, Philippines

20 October 2016Climate-Smart Livestock Project

NI researcher Dr Kerstin Zander visited PhD student Jacquelyn Escarcha's field study site in Central Luzon, Philippines in October. Jacquelyn's PhD research study project is entitled 'Towards climate-smart livestock: the role of water buffalo in increasing livelihood resilience in Central Luzon, Philippines'. Visit activities included field observation, meeting with research participants and attending a local scientific seminar and annual convention in Manila.
View pics of the visit

Cambodia Ministry of Education VIP visit

Cambodia Ministry of Education VIP visit to Northern Institute

13 October 2016

NI Director Professor Ruth Wallace recently met with Mr Mak Ngoy the Director General of Higher Education in the Ministry of Education of Cambodia. Mr Ngoy was visiting Charles Darwin University and being hosted by Dr Ania Lian who is a lecturer in Teaching & Learning at CDU as well as the Vice-President of AsiaCALL (Research and Innovation).

Pictured L to R: Dr Ania Lian, Mr Mak Ngoy & Professor Ruth Wallace

Ruth award team photo NI Director wins prestigious AIMS Leadership Award

29 September 2016

Professor Ruth Wallace was announced the 2016 winner of the AIM Leadership Excellence NT Leader/Manager of the Year award at Parliament House, Darwin on Thursday 29 September.  Professor Wallace was nominated for creating a culture of excellence at the Northern Institute and for driving its development into a highly regarded and internationally recognised social and policy research institute. She also was recognised for her ability to exercise strong leadership in a complex and multi-disciplinary setting, and for building the Institute’s profile among key stakeholders including government agencies, industry organisations, Indigenous communities and in the wider non-government sector. Ruth now goes onto the National Finals at a Gala dinner which will be held in Brisbane in October. Good luck, Ruth!

Tony BarnesNI Researcher Provides Advice for Major Review

26 September 2016

NI researcher Tony Barnes of our Demography and Growth Planning team provided the methodological advice for this major review of Indigenous Burden of Disease and sitson the Australian Burden of Disease Indigenous Reference Group. Amongst other results, this report outlines the causes of the gaps in life expectancy between Indigenous and other Australians.

You can download the document FREE at the following webpage:


Congratulations Peter Berggren!

19 September 2016

Peter Berggren was recently awarded The Håkan Mogren Foundation 2016 medical scholarship in recognition of – and for the advancement of – efforts for human well-being. Peter has been a close colleague of NI Demographer Professor Dean Carson over the years travelling to Darwin in 2013 to take part in our 'URBAN NORTH: Dreams and Realities Symposium'. Peter who works at the Centre for Rural Medicine in Sweden's North which is a partner with NI & the Northern Ontario School of Medicine in winning a $450,000 grant to investigate health workforce issues in remote parts of Sweden earlier this year.

Read the Peter Berggren award story -
About the grant -

Samantha Disbray

NI work with Warumungu and Warlmanpa language speakers in Tennant

16 September 2016

The CDU campus in Tennant Creek has been a buzz the last two weeks. Warumungu and Warlmanpa language speakers have been working with Northern Institute’s Samantha Disbray and Australian National University colleague Jane Simpson as part of a set of projects under the Centre for Excellence Dynamics of Languages. Click here for more pics & information.

Linda & PeterMonash Visitor to NI

13 September 2016

Dr Linda Ford hosted Dr Peter Anderson a visiting researcher from Monash University (Faculty of Education) who is in the Northern Territory to visit pre-service teachers at Maningrida (West Arnhem Land region) doing their practical in a remote community. Peter's country is the Daly River region and he resides & works in Melbourne, Victoria.

The best

Northern Institute sweep LEBA Faculty Grants again!

08 September 2016

We are very proud to announce that our multi-talented research team were successful in winning a majority of the LEBA Faculty Collaboration Grants announced recently. Congratulations to the following NI researchers and their partners researchers and agencies for their winning projects:

  • Tom Wilson, Kerstin Zander, Andrew Taylor and Huw Brokensha - Creating seasonal de facto population estimates
  • Ben Zeng, Rolf Gerritsen, Judy Lovell, Supriya Mathew, Deepika Mathur - Social sustainability: Regional development in remote Indigenous Australia
  • Ruth Wallace and Cathy Robinson - Evaluating the impact of investment northern development with Indigenous communities
  • Ruth Wallace, Karen Gibb and Michael Christie - Moving from Theory to Practice – Pathways for Aboriginal led Development.
  • Linda Ford and Marianne StClair - Expansion of Telehealth and digital inclusion in Northern Australia.
  • Linda Ford and Heather Gibb - Addressing neglected contexts of ageing in northern Australia
  • Dean Carson - Stimulating migration of the professional workforce into northern regions– what can we learn from medical doctors?
  • Emma Williams and Gill Westhorp - Developing evaluative research capacity
  • Elspeth Oppermann and Matt Brearley - Heat Stress Research Partnership grant applications: app development and prototype.

Congratulations to you all!

Congratulations to NI’s Dr Kate Golebiowska Who Has Just Published a Joint Paper In the Australian Geographer

 Kate G07 September 2016

Congratulations to NI’s Dr Kate Golebiowska who has just published a joint paper in the Australian Geographer entitled ‘Responding to Negative Public Attitudes towards Immigration through Analysis and Policy: regional and unemployment dimensions’. The Australian Geographer is the oldest academic Geography journal in Australia.  It is published in four issues per year and is indexed in a number of citation indexes.  Launched in 1928, the journal is a peer-reviewed academic journal that is distributed all over the world.  It focuses primarily on two areas of research: Australia and its region, including developments, issues and policies in Australia, the western Pacific, the Indian Ocean, Asia and Antarctica; and environmental studies, particularly the biophysical environment and human interactions with it.The Australian Geographer is published by Routledge Taylor and Francis Group

Publication details:
Golebiowska, K.,
Elnasri, A. and Withers, G. (2016). Responding to Negative Public Attitudes towards Immigration through Analysis and Policy: regional and unemployment dimensions, Australian Geographer, online 2 September, DOI: 10.1080/00049182.2016.1220904.


NI Hosts 1ST GO DIGI POP UP Event On Campus

2 September 2016

Northern Institute hosted our first Go Digi Pop-Up Darwin Festival event recently. The Go Digi Pop-Up Festival is run as part of the National Year of Digital Inclusion. The Go Digi goal is to help 300,000 Australians improve their digital skills and online confidence and these Pop-Up Festivals are a great way for the community share their digital knowledge. NI researcher Marianne St Clair pulled together a group of ‘techsperts’ to present ‘i-Med and i-Vet: Delivering tele-medicine and tele-veterinary services to remote areas in Northern Australia and Indonesia’. Event details

Dr Don Zollner

Award Winning Paper Presented

23 August 2016

NI Adjunct Don Zoellner presented his award winning paper from the AVETRA Research Conference 2016 as part of the People.Policy.Place 2016 Seminar Series. The paper entitled ‘Fixing problematic apprentice systems: there is never a clean slate’ was well received by all who attended. 



NI Attends Freedom Festival

21 August 2016

Northern Institute were proud to have been on Gurindji country for the 50th Wave Hill Walk Off Anniversary and Freedom Festival.

The Charles Darwin University delegation, led by Vice Chancellor Professor Simon Maddocks, were panel members for the Jarrakapkula (Talking): Indigenous Education held at Barrangut (Daguragu Rec hall) which was moderated by PVC Indigenous Leadership, Wendy Ludwig.  Facebook pics

Garma Festivel

Garma Festival 2016

03 August 2016

Northern Institute were part of a CDU delegation headed by Vice Chancellor Professor Simon Maddocks that attended Garma Festival 2016 (29 July to 1 August).  Over 2000 people came together on north-east Arnhem Land site to take part in Garma which is Australia’s Leading Cultural Exchange event.  The theme this year was ‘the land is our backbone’.  The annual festival is facilitated by the Yothu Yindi Foundation who is committed to improving the state of Indigenous disadvantage by engaging business, political, academic, and other leaders of society to shape global, regional, and industry agendas.

The Garma gathering brings together business leaders, international political leaders, intellectuals, academics and journalists to discuss the most pressing issues facing Australia.  Please visit the Garma website to view the full program of events and entertainment offered during the festival.

Population symposium to examine NT future

Population symposium to examine NT future

18 July 2016

In the lead up to the 2016 Census, experts will gather in Darwin to discuss key demographic issues affecting the Northern Territory and what this might mean for the future of Northern Australia.
The Northern Institute at Charles Darwin University will host a Northern Population Matters symposium on Thursday, 4 August in Darwin, bringing together researchers to present findings on recent population change and possible impacts for society and the economy. read more

NAIDOC 2016 National Awards In Darwin


08 July 2016

Northern Institute attended the NAIDOC 2016 National Awards held in Darwin on Friday 8 July.  Congratulations to all the award winners!

Award winners:

  • Caring for Country Award: Manymak Energy Efficiency Project (NT)
  • Youth of the Year: Elijah Douglas (QLD)
  • Artist of the Year: Geoffrey Gurrumul Yunupingu (NT)
  • Scholar of the Year: Layneisha Sgro (WA)
  • Apprentice of the Year: Montana Ah-Won (WA)
  • Sportsperson of the Year: Jade North (NSW)
  • Female Elder of the Year: Professor MaryAnn Bin-Sallik (NT)
  • Male Elder of the Year: Dr Robert Francis Isaacs (WA)
  • Person of the Year: Professor Chris Sarra (QLD)
  • Lifetime Achievement Award winner: Stephen Page (QLD)

See all the event pics here


NI Takes Part In ASIC NAIDOC Event With Video Launch

05 July 2016

Professor Ruth Wallace was guest speaker at a ASIC NIADOC Week event with the theme "Songlines: the living narrative of our nation" to celebrate the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.  She joined Dr Donna Odegard from Larrakia Nation and presented about Indigenous women & leadership.  ASIC Commissioner Cathie Armour hosted the event which also launched ASIC’s new video resources for Indigenous Australians – ASIC has developed three video animations which provide light-hearted, easy to understand information for remote and regional Indigenous audiences on three key financial issues:
Motor vehicle financing, Consumer leases, Book up.

you can view the videos here
The event was recorded and video linked to ASIC offices across Australia including Adelaide, Brisbane, Canberra, Hobart, Melbourne, Perth, Sydney and Traralgon

NT sausagefest

The NT'S a Sausagefest

30 June 2016

NI Demographer Dr Andrew Taylor was interviewed by the Sunday Territorian about how the Territory is the most male-dominated part of Australia. Here's the article.

Prof. Rolf

How Local Politics In The Northern Territory Could Muddy The Federal Vote — The Conversation

17 June 2016

Congratulations to NI’s Central Australian based Principal Researcher Professor Rolf Gerritsen whose article was just published on The Conversation today.

Here’s the link "State of the states: how local politics in the Northern Territory could muddy the federal vote"

MPP 2016

Master of Public Policy: Enrol now for semester 2

01 June 2016

Northern Institute (NI) at Charles Darwin University now offer a Master of Public Policy (SPPOL1) degree and are currently taking enrolments for semester 2.  The Master of Public Policy (MPP) addresses the expressed need for a postgraduate qualification that equips public policy practitioners for working in northern Australia and with its northern neighbours in Southeast Asia.

The Master of Public Policy (MPP) is designed for such northern contexts; it will provide students with a strong theoretical and practical understanding of the design, implementation and evaluation of public policy in remote, regional, Indigenous and cross-jurisdictional contexts. The course is also intended to be a platform for both students and staff of partner organisations, departments and universities, fostering a culture of cooperation to support the development of public policy practice in this rapidly developing region. NI can offer elements of the Master in Public Policy in 'Intensive Mode'. NI is enrolling students for Semester 2 and will be holding Master of Public Policy Information Sessions (45min) on the following dates:

  • 5.00pm Thursday 16 June (Northern Institute, CDU Casuarina campus Yellow 1.2.48)
  • 3.30pm Monday 27 June (Northern Australian Development Office, 76 The Esplanade, Darwin City)
  • 5.00pm Wednesday 13 July (Northern Institute, CDU Casuarina campus Yellow 1.2.48)

Prospective students are encouraged to attend these sessions to learn more, meet with lecturers, discuss study options and ask questions. Please click here for detailed information on course outline, unit details and credit points, testimonials and intensive modes on offer. You can also download a MPP flyer 2016 here.

NI hosts Permampu Consortium of Women’s NI hosts Permampu Consortium of Women’s Organisations in Alice

25 May 2016

Recently 5 visitors from the Permampu Consortium of Women’s Organisations in Sumatra arrived in Alice Springs for two full days of networking and visits, organised and supported by the Northern Institute researchers Samantha Disbray and Deepika Mathur and research student Delyna Baxter. Ramida Sinaga, Endang Sulfiana, Ramadhaniati, Desy Setyawati, Yeni Roslaini were picked up from the airport on Wednesday 25 May and hosted at a lunch at the Star of Alice provided by CDU. The group was joined by Central Australian Aboriginal Congress Research Co-ordinator Bronwyn Silver, who afterwards lead the tour of Alukura Birth Centre. Later they visited the Purple House, the Western Desert Dialysis Unit to find out about their innovative service and community governance model. To read more & view pics visit our Facebook

Bilawara Lee

Congratulations To Bilawara Lee!

22 May 2016

Wonderful news that respected Larrakia woman Bilawara Lee has been appointed to CDU as an academic-in-residence. Bilawara has a long history working with the Northern Institute and we value the knowledge she brings to us - and now the entire University. Full story


Young ‘know role’ in knowledge future

19 May 2016

Young Indigenous Central Australians recognise their vital role in ensuring that traditional knowledge is carried into the future, a Charles Darwin University researcher has found.

Dr Josie Douglas said that young Aboriginal people had much to offer in showing how modern technology could be used in the “maintenance and transmission of knowledge”. “As fearless users of technology, our young people are often underestimated but nonetheless a central element in the Indigenous knowledge system,” Dr Douglas said. read more...

Anhui University visit Northern Institute

Anhui University visit Northern Institute

11 May 2016

Northern Institute had the honour of hosting representatives from the Anhui University, China, this morning.

The distinguished delegates included: CHENG Hua, President; GUO Zhiyuan, Director International Department; ZHANG Shuting, Lecturer of Foreign Languages School, Interpreter.

Anhui University has a Rural Economic and Social Development Research Institute with some similar research themes & capability to Northern Institute - this meeting highlighted the similarities and the possibility for future research partnership.
To view more pics visit our Facebook

Prof Emma

Rare air for evaluation expert

26 May 2016

A Charles Darwin University academic has received international recognition for her professional expertise as an evaluator. Associate Professor Emma Williams of the Northern Institute this month received word that she has been designated a Credentialed Evaluator by the Credentialing Board linked to the Canadian Evaluation Society, the only organisation in the world where this designation can be gained.

“The application process requires evidence of expertise and experience in multiple areas,” Ms Williams said. read more....


Prof Rolf new newsInternational education ‘could bring NT $150m’

26 April 2016

A Charles Darwin University academic has calculated that the Territory’s international education exports could triple to $150 million a year within a decade. Northern Institute political economist Professor Rolf Gerritsen said this would see international education rise to fifth on the list of export earners for the NT, up from its current 10th placing.

“The international education sector is a promising industry for the NT and will grow in importance, both absolutely and relative to other export industries,” Professor Gerritsen said. read more....

Ruth New president Northern Institute Director, Professor Ruth Wallace was announced as the new President of AVETRA

22 April 2016

Last night at the AVETRA Conference (Sydney) Northern Institute Director, Professor Ruth Wallace was announced as the new President of the Australian Vocational Education & Training Research Association (AVETRA).  Below left she is pictured with outgoing President Michele Simons.

But wait there’s more….NI’s Professor Don Zoellner won the ‘Best Conference Paper’ at the AVETRA conference awards – Don is pictured with Michele and Ruth (below right). Congratulations to both Ruth and Don on their accomplishments!

To view more pics visit our Facebook page or Twitter

Disaster Management report

New Report Just Launched - Disaster Resilience, Management and Preparedness in Aboriginal Communities in Darwin and Palmerston

19 April 2016

How do Aboriginal Communities prepare for disasters? We worked with the Northern Territory Emergency Services (NTES), Red Cross & Larrakia Nation Aboriginal Corporation (LNAC) to explore the experiences of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in Darwin when a cyclone, bushfire or severe weather event strikes and in its aftermath, and to identify determinants of vulnerability from the perspective of these communities.

Read the report here


Central Australians Win Research Grants

11 April 2016

Seven staff at Charles Darwin University’s Alice Springs campus have won grants for research projects in areas ranging from heat stress and recycling, to teaching in remote Australia. The grants, of either $5000 or $10,000, will fund four projects in the Northern Institute and a fifth in the School of Education.

  • Dr Judy Lovell and Dr Benxiang Zeng: Socio-economic development activities evident in an exchange of knowledges between indigenous communities in Asia-Pacific region.
  • Dr Supriya Matthew, Dr Benxiang Zeng, Dr Slade Lee and Dr Andrew Coutts: Exploring the relevance of native plants in mitigating heat stress in Central Australia.
  • Dr Deepika Mathur, Dr Robert Crawford and Professor Rolf Gerritsen: Environmental and economic cost of recycling construction waste in Alice Springs.
  • Dr Elspeth Oppermann, Dr Don Zoellner and Dr Matt Brearley: Why apprentices fail to complete: Exploring Northern Australia's extreme heat as a possible factor.
  • Dr Lisa Papatraianou, Dr Al Strangeways and Dr Susan Beltman: Becoming a teacher in remote Australia: Picturing Resilience.

Read the full CDU E-news story


Seniors in NT Population Set To Double!

07 April 2016

This morning NI Researcher & Demography expert Dr Andrew Taylor talked to Conor Byrne on Breakfast 105.7 ABC Darwin about his research and our report commissioned by Council on the Aging NT recently presented to City of Darwin to help make Darwin age-friendly.

Listen to the interview at 1.46.15 here

Read our report

Ranking Logo

CDU ranks higher among world’s young unis

07 April 2016

CDU has moved UP from 48 to 31 in Times Higher Education rankings of universities less than 50 years. Making us the third highest ranking University in the whole of Australia. See the stats
Read the CDU eNews story

Alicia Boyle

Thousands of ‘untapped workers’ could boost NT economy

06 April 2016

Charles Darwin University’s Northern Institute has estimated that there are nearly 6000 unemployed Darwin residents who have the potential to boost the Northern Territory economy. Workforce Development Research Associate Alicia Boyle said the mobilisation of Darwin’s “untapped labour force” could enhance government objectives to develop Northern Australia. read more...

Read the research by our NI experts here

Listen to the interview with Vicki Kerrigan ABC 105.7 & Alicia Boyle

Creative Commons workshop

Creative Commons workshop - Investigating the use of Creative Commons licenses with Indigenous language materials

05 April 2016

Thanks to a small grant from the Faculty of Law, Education, Business and Arts (LEBA) at Charles Darwin University, granted to the Northern Institute (Cathy Bow) and the School of Law (David Price), an expert in the area of Copyright law and Creative Commons was invited to facilitate a two-day workshop in Darwin in March. Our invited guest, Dr Anne Fitzgerald is a barrister who has practised, taught and researched in the areas of intellectual property law, internet/e-commerce law and international trade law for more than 20 years. read more....

Workshop Taiwan

NI Takes Part In Walking Workshop Taiwan

01 April 2016

The International Network of Indigenous Ecological Farmers (INIEF) Walking Workshop and Alliance Meeting: took place in Taiwan from 10-21 March 2016 and Northern Institute researchers took part. Indigenous farmers and  scholars from 12 Indigenous groups in eight countries: Australia, Thailand, Philippines, Nepal, Malaysia, India, Papua New Guinea and Taiwan, with around 20 different languages, gathered in Taiwan travelling to more than 10 Indigenous communities in Taiwan, to share our experiences around the topics of food sovereignty and climate change, our search for ecological farming techniques, our struggles for territory and the defence of our culture, our ways of teaching and learning. The group met in the field, discussed in the forest, shared their knowledge in deep mountains. The workshop led to The Taiwan Declaration of Indigenous Ecological Farmer, which was read at the closing ceremony in Taipei by Theresa Alice, an East Arrernte woman from Alice Springs.  The Australian team included Northern Institute researchers Dr. Judith Lovell and Dr. Benxiang Zeng and Theresa Alice, an educator and designer of cultural curricula in central Australia. We shared our knowledge and efforts in regional economic development in Indigenous communities, Indigenous education, Indigenous traditional knowledge transmission, and Australian Indigenous people’s perspectives on land, food and culture.
Mr. Richard Neumann (Deputy Representative of Australian Office in Taipei) and his wife participated in the workshop activities on 16 March 2016 in Cinsbu Community. At this time he said he appreciated this opportunity and acknowledged Northern Institute's  contribution in the workshop as well as our contribution to strengthen the linkage between Australia and Taiwan especially in the cooperation in Indigenous studies and exchanges. View the photo album on Facebook

NI thank you with staff pic_Page_1

NI Celebrates Harmony Day

22 March 2016

We had over 25 CDU staff & students join us to celebrate Harmony Day at Northern Institute Tuesday 22 March.

The annual ‘bring a plate’ lunch was opened by Dr Linda Ford, who is currently Acting Director of Northern Institute. Linda gave some fascinating statistics about the NT’s multicultural diversity and then congratulated NI staff members Aravinda and Hina on their newly acquired Australian citizenship. The amazing BYO buffet included rice paper rolls, goat curry, samosas, fried rice, pavlova, spicy noodles, sausage rolls, Greek pastries, cheese & dips, Sri Lankan curry, hot chips & even a giant basket of Easter eggs.

Thank you to everyone who came along and Happy Harmony Day!  View the pics HERE

Dr matt-brearley

This Morning We Spoke to ABC Darwin radio About Heat Stress......

22 March 2016

NI Adjunct researcher Dr Matt Brearly talks to Margo about humidity, heat stress and tradies working smart

Listen to the interview HERE

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Judy & Ben

We Are In Taiwan This Week

18 March 2016

Our Alice Springs based researchers Dr Judy Lovell & Dr Benxiang Zeng are in Taiwan 10-20 March attending and presenting at the International Network of Indigenous Ecological Farmers (INIEF) Conference (Providence University). It is a roving conference that travels around a range of communities to visit local farms, sacred sites & water sources.

Some of the communities visited are: Namasia/ E’dolan/ Laiji community, Tayal’s Community (Jianshi Township), Quri community, Mrqwang River, Tbahu community, Cinsbu community, Smangus Community, Taipei.

We’ll report on their trip and findings when they return to Australia. Share this story on Twitter and Facebook

US Visitor

Visit From USA Academic

17 March 2016

Dr Apichai Shipper was welcomed to the Northern Institute this week. Dr Shipper is an Asia Regional Chair of the US Dept. of State Foreign Service Institute and an expert in Japan-U.S. relations, comparative immigration politics and international migration. On request, Northern Institute provided Dr Shipper with an overview of Australian Indigenous Policy & Indigenous issues in Northern Australia.

Dr Shipper hopes to return to Darwin in January 2017 and we have requested that he present for our People.Policy.Place seminar series on his next visit. 

Here he is pictured with NI researchers from left: Michael Harrison, Dr Linda Ford, Dr Apichai Shipper & Dr Christine Black.

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Small & Medium Research Grants winners logoNorthern Institute win 10 of 14 research grants

7 March 2016 

Our amazing team of Northern Institute researchers just won 10 of the 14 Small & Medium Research Grants (2016) offered by the CDU Law, Education, Business & Arts Faculty. And the winning research projects are:

  • ‘Indigenous Knowledge Work in Northern Australian Landscapes of Democracy’ - Dr Michaela Spencer, Dr Endre Danyi, Professor Michael Christie, Professor Helen Verran and Dr Thomas Scheffer
  • ‘Exploring the relevance of native plants in mitigating heat stress in central Australia’ - Dr Supriya Mathew, Dr Benxiang Zeng, Slade Lee (Ninti One) and Dr Andrew Coutts
  • ‘Socio-economic development activities evident in an exchange of knowledges between indigenous communities in Asia-Pacific region’ - Dr Judith Lovell and Dr Benxiang Zeng
  • ‘Social drivers of ecosystem change: Knowledge consolidation pilot project’ - Dr Tom Brewer
  • ‘Measurement and application of TPACK in Higher Education contexts: A CDU case study’ - Ms Alicia Boyle, Dr Jon Mason, Ms Alison Reedy and Ms Ruth Billany
  • ‘Why Apprentices Fail to Complete: Exploring Northern Australia's Extreme Heat as a Possible Factor’ - Dr Elspeth Oppermann, Dr Don Zoellner and Dr Matt Brearley
  • ‘Environmental and Economic Cost of Recycling Construction Waste in Alice Springs’ - Dr Deepika Mathur, Dr Robert Crawford and Professor Rolf Gerritsen
  • ‘Mapping the Cultural and Environmental Values of the Northern Territories Marine Environment to Inform MPA Planning’ - Dr Jackie Gould
  • ‘Revitalising the Tykin Languages of the Daly-Wagait Region’ - Dr Payi Linda Ford, A/Professor David Green and Mr Bruce Birch
  • ‘Understanding the Contract/Seasonal Employment Potential in Regions with High Youth Unemployment: Testing a Dedicated Investigative Tool’ - Alicia Boyle and A/Professor Pascal Tremblay

Another busy & productive year ahead - congratulations to you all!

NI hosts Kansas UniversityNI hosts Kansas State University

29 February 2016

NI had the pleasure of hosting visiting US academics Dr Sue Maes and Professor John Leslie from Kansas State University in February. The Kansas State delegation was in Australia to promote research partnerships and student exchange opportunities. The duo also presented a People.Policy.Place seminar at Northern Institute on Research and Distance Education during their visit. 

Picture (left to right): Professor Ruth Wallace (Director, Northern Institute), Professor Sharon Bell (CDU Deputy Vice Chancellor), Dr Sue Maes & Professor John Leslie (Kansas State Uni), Jan Mo (CDU Deputy Director International) at Northern Institute

farewell for DVC Professor Sharon Bell

NI hosts farewell for DVC Professor Sharon Bell

22 February 2016

Northern Institute hosted a farewell morning tea for Deputy Vice-Chancellor Professor Sharon Bell recently. Director Professor Ruth Wallace presented Professor Bell with a print of 'Mystery Train' by Marina Strocchi. The DVC has been a strong advocate of NI since its inception and her leadership & support will be greatly missed. Professor Bell leaves CDU after 5 years service and will be relocating to Canberra NSW. -LINK



NI Director awards prestigious Fulbright Scholarship 

15 February 2016

A prominent Charles Darwin University academic will travel to the United States this year to collaborate and build on her research, which seeks to engage remote communities in biosecurity surveillance. Northern Institute Director Professor Ruth Wallace has been awarded a Fulbright Distinguished Chair in Agriculture and Life Sciences Scholarship, which has been sponsored by Kansas State University.

Professor Wallace’s research focuses on marginalised learners’ identities and the intersections with educational systems in regional and remote areas of Northern Australia, and is predominantly undertaken with Aboriginal people. Her stay in the US will contribute to the “Biosecurity Policy at the Margins Project”. read the full story here


Territory FM's Daryl Manzie interviews Cathy Bow

08 February 2016

Daryl Manzie spoke to NI researcher Cathy Bow about Indigenous Languages and a new project.  

Listen to the interview HERE 

Northern Institute

Announcing Northern Institute Policy Briefings 

04 February 2016

In 2016 Northern Institute (NI) commences a Policy Briefing Seminar series in addition to the popular NI People-Policy-Place Research Seminar Series. These Policy Briefing seminars host senior members of Northern Territory and Federal Government agencies to discuss current policy directions that impact on the region.

We invite Territorians from the community, businesses, government and government agencies to participate in these opportunities to participate and hear about the policies that impact on all our lives. Contact Katrina Britnell, Partnerships Coordinator for more information or to recommend a speaker 08 8946 7468 or

Our first Policy Briefing presenter is Tony Considine, General Manager, Indigenous Education Review Implementation from NT Dept of Education.  Tony will be presenting  'A Share in the Future – Indigenous Education Strategy 2015 Review' at Northern Institute Tuesday 16 February 2016.  To find out more and book a place, visit our Event Calendar.  

Prof Dean & Anne

NI Represented at Northern Sweden Conference

15 December 2015

Professor Dean Carson (Senior NI Researcher, based in Sweden) and NI PhD student Ana Vuin represented NI at a conference in northern Sweden recently. The conference was called (translated) “Regional outlook for northern Sweden” and was sponsored by the County Council of Västerbotten. To view their presentations please go to the links:

  1. Dean Carson talked about the importance of international research links, and what these links can be used for… LINK
  2. Ana Vuin talked about what ‘less attractive’ rural areas might need to know about the motivations of people to move there… LINK

Northern Institute End of Year Get+Together

11 December, 2015

On Friday about 50 friends of NI came together to celebrate the end of another exciting and highly successful year for Northern Institute. Vice Chancellor Professor Simon Maddocks attended the event which began with a Welcome to Country & Larrakia Smoking Ceremony by Larrakia Elder Bilawara Lee. The smoking ceremony cleansed all guests of negative energy and provided rejuvenation for the new year. The VC then presented followed by NI Director, Professor Ruth Wallace, who highlighted all the amazing NI achievements of 2015.

gettogetherView all the pics here

Cathy Bow

Indigenous clam story snares prize

07 December 2015

The next generation of Indigenous storytellers has reinvigorated stories in traditional languages using the latest in technology and taken home a cash prize for their depiction of a story about three clams named Ḏiŋ’, Ḏaŋ’, and Ḏoŋ’.

The “Living Archive Digital Story Competition” was run though the Northern Institute at Charles Darwin University’s “Living Archive of Aboriginal Languages” project, which has built a digital archive of endangered literature with the language-owning communities.

Project manager CDU linguist Cathy Bow said the competition had encouraged people to engage with the archive to create digital resources based on books in the archive. read more

Dr Michaela Spencer Researcher wins grant for politics project

07 December 2015

A researcher with the Northern Institute has won funding for a new ethnographic project in concert with one of Europe’s top universities.

Postdoctoral research fellow Dr Michaela Spencer was the only Territorian to share the $3.5 million in grants announced last month by the Australia-Germany Joint Research Cooperation Project. Dr Spencer and German counterpart Dr Endre Danyi, from the Johann Wolfgang Goethe University, will undertake a unique project to examine the practices of two starkly different political environments at opposite ends of the earth. read more....

Dr Linda

Epigeum Interview with Linda Ford at NI

03 December 2015

Today our Senior Research Fellow Dr Linda Ford was interviewed by Epigeum. The interview, which highlighted research impact, will be used as part of a course offered by eipeum entitled 'Enhancing Research Impact'.



Innovation@CDU Grant 2015 Project Showcase

03 December 2015

We presented on 2 of our successful Innovation grants. Research Coordinator, Belinda Snell, presented to the VC and CDU colleagues: 'International Global Mobility Exchange – Developing process and protocol'

This innovation project was created to enhance the existing CDU exchange/intern programs by aligning them with course rules and developing a complete package of processes that includes internal and external requirements. & Patricia Joy from our Living Archive of Aboriginal Languages team presented on their successful innovation project, 'Embedding Indigenous Languages'.

Congratulations to both for doing a fantastic job presenting!

VC awards

Northern Institute VC Award Winners!

02 December 2015

Congratulations to all our stars for their Vice Chancellor nominations/awards; Dr Linda Ford, Dr Kerstin Zander, Mary Ann Maddox, the Demography team and the Research Support Service. We all appreciate the work you do and the recognition you so richly deserve. Keep up the good work.

And congratulations to NI PhD student Simon Morris for his Long Service Award.


COTA NTInquiry urges action in remote communities

02 December 2015

PEOPLE are growing old in remote places that have never dealt with population ageing.Those communities must now meet the needs of increasing numbers of longerterm elderly residents and inmigrant retirees who are ageing-in-place.

An inquiry undertaken by the Council on the Ageing NT and the Northern Institute at Charles Darwin University has confirmed the need for critical attention to ageing-in-place in remote communities. LINK

Ruth - Indonesia trip

UST MoU with CDU Australia

01 December 2015

Yogya (KR) – Postgraduate Program of University of Sarjanawiyata Tamansiswa (UST) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Charles Darwin University (CDU) Australia. The MoU was signed by Dr. Imam Ghozali, MSc (Vice Rector I UST Yogya-Indonesia) and Prof Ruth Wallace (CDU-Australia) in Gedung Ki Sarino Mangunpranoto, the headquarter campus, on Sunday (29/11). The MoU which is valid for 5 years addresses to work together on Tri Dharma Perguruan Tinggi (Three Goals of Universities); education and teaching, research and community service.

Prof Ruth Wallace said that her institution was so glad to work together with UST Yogyakarta, an institution which was based on culture and established by Ki Hadjar Dewantara, the Founding Father of Indonesian National Education.

Similarly, Dr. Imam Ghozali MSc said that “Prof Ruth Wallace will begin to implement the MoU in 2016 at UST Yogya.”  

Book - Dr Tom Wilson

New book from NI researcher: ‘Demography for Planning and Policy: Australian Case Studies’

27 November 2015

Northern Institute is delighted to announce that our Principal Research Fellow Dr Tom Wilson has just published a new book ‘Demography for Planning and Policy: Australian Case Studies’ (Springer). Tom edited the book with Elin Charles-Edwards and Martin Bell. 

About the book: The book presents a diverse range of case studies in which demographic analysis has been undertaken to inform planning and policy in Australia. Includes topics rarely tackled in demography, such as the communication of population projections, and the use of official population statistics in electoral distributions and financial distributions. Contains unique Australian topics, such as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander demography Find out more

rolfs_paperProfessor Rolf Gerristsen ‘IS’ an oil Painting

10 November 2015

Portrait by Alice artist Al Strangeways' of NI researcher wins Senior Portrait of a Territorian award, View the article by Patrick Nelson, CDU Media here 

CDU LIBRARY OPEN ACCESS AWARD 2NI Researcher Receives 2015 CDU Library Open Access Award

29 October 2015

Congratulations to Northern Institute’s Dr Andrew Taylor, for winning the 2015 Charles Darwin University (CDU) Library Open Access Award. The Award, is presented by the CDU Library annually. The Senior Research Fellow won the award for the most number of open access publications deposited in the CDU eSpace repository during the last twelve months.  

Professor Lawrence Cram, Pro Vice Chancellor, Research and Research Training, presented the Award this year, and it was received by Professor Ruth Wallace, Director of the Northern Institute, in Dr Taylor’s absence. Dr Taylor provided a short video presentation acknowledging his award which was shown at the ceremony. View Andrew's acceptance speech video here.

The Award is presented at the annual Open Access Seminar during International Open Access Week in October each year.

Prof Rolf

7th Indigenous Economic Development Forum

18 -20 October 2015

Northern Institute researchers are attending and presenting at the IED Forum this week. The Northern Territory (NT) Government, through the Northern Australia Development Office in partnership with the Department of Business, is hosting the IED Forum which is recognised as one of the largest Indigenous economic development specific events held in Australia.

Charles Darwin University is a major sponsor. With the Northern Territory leading the push to develop the North this year's theme of 'Developing the North' is highly appropriate. We are laying the foundations for what is likely to be northern Australia’s biggest period of growth. This growth and access will lead to developmental opportunities for Indigenous Territorians on a scale never seen before. The NT Government maintains that Indigenous socioeconomic development is central to long term and sustainable northern development.


NI presents ‘Yolŋu Women’s Science’ at NIRAKN Conference 2015

14 September 2015

NI researchers Dr Payi Linda Ford and Johanna Funk presented their & Kathy Guthadjaka’s research work to the National Indigenous Research and Knowledges Network (NIRAKN) Conference in Adelaide 29 September.  NIRAKN is a national, inclusive, multidisciplinary hub and spokes model network committed to facilitating and establishing Indigenous-led research. 

The title of their presentation was ‘Yolŋu Women’s Science’. The workshop presented a synopsis of the learning on country process by the rese

arch team that include Kathy Guthadjaka, Dr Payi Linda Ford and Johanna funk based at Northern Institute. The Indigenous Women’s Science team travelled to Gäwa to synthesise, analyse and evaluate models and frameworks of Indigenous Women’s science knowledge to inform the development of curriculum materials. Through following the instructions from our Elder on Country Researcher, Kathy Guthadjaka, as we travelled to various significant sites on location on Galiwink’u (Elcho Island) presented new ways of engagement and big learning. The team engaged in deep Learning on Country, and identified principles of Indigenous women’s science. As a team we came to better understand our own positions and to engage with each other to move beyond what we had initially expected. The evidence presented itself through Guthadjaka’s teaching about Warramirri philosophy behind the resources she has created to share Yolŋu Women’s Science knowledge. The result of the project thus far has identified the processes for an Indigenous engagement model based on Yalu Djurrwirr for science that is generative and collaborative.

Masters in Public Policy - Enrolments now open!

14 September 

The course is designed to prepare policy makers with the necessary knowledge and skills to engage in effective and ethical research for policy development, implementation and evaluation. It provides a unique opportunity to develop individual students’ analytical and research capacity through supervision with established public policy researchers, policy developers and evaluators working in northern contexts. 

Students will explore a variety of political, cultural and social theory approaches to public policy. They will also gain a solid understanding of evidence-based policy development, evaluation and empirical research theories and methodologies. Students can choose from a range of specialist electives to further develop their public policy knowledge in their area of choice, such as Indigenous policy, international education, governance and management, health, emergency and disaster management and environmental management. 

The course addresses the expressed need for a postgraduate qualification that equips public policy practitioners for working in northern Australia and with its northern neighbours in Southeast Asia. The Master of Public Policy is designed for such northern contexts; it will provide students with a strong theoretical and practical understanding of the design, implementation and evaluation of public policy in remote, regional, Indigenous and cross-jurisdictional contexts. The course is also intended to be a platform for both students and staff of partner organisations, departments and universities, fostering a culture of cooperation to support the development of public policy practice in this rapidly developing region. 

This course is aimed at mature students with an undergraduate degree who want to be employed, or advance their career, in a policy related role within the region of northern Australia and Southeast Asia. Graduates will be able to apply for doctoral studies in similar fields upon completion of this course.

Apply for 2016 HERE 

We are looking for a Research Associate / Research Fellow to join our team.  

11 September 2015

The successful applicant will be part of the Demography and Growth Planning team in the Northern Institute.

The project you will work on will make significant advances in two related areas of regional, council area and local population forecasting:

(1) improving accuracy, and

(2) providing indications of forecast uncertainty. In order to increase the value of forecasts to users,

the project will combine methods from a range of disciplines to devise more accurate ways of forecasting populations, and provide accompanying information on their likely error.

This position provides an exciting opportunity to participate in a project which will make innovative contributions to population forecasting, strengthen Australian research in applied demography, and provide useful outcomes for both producers and users of population forecasts throughout the world.



Demographer to target regional populations

31 August 2015

Charles Darwin University’s new population scientist says Australia’s rapidly changing demographic mix underpins the need to develop more accurate methods for forecasting population.

Dr Tom Wilson, who has joined CDU’s Northern Institute Demography and Growth Planning Team as Principal Research Fellow, said that more accurate projections were needed for a wide variety of policy and planning purposes. “Population forecasts often turn out to be far more inaccurate than users realise, yet billions of dollars in government expenditure are allocated every year based on available numbers,” Dr Wilson said.

“Better quality data will help us determine where our population is going and what’s happening to our society. One question we might ask, for example, is: will the Territory’s population reach a million people? read more....

Supreme Court Language and Law Conference

31 August 2015

Northern Institute researchers, Professor Rolf Gerritsen & Dr Samantha Disbray presented at the Supreme Court Language and Law Conference held in Darwin on 30th August 2015.

Presentation titles:

  • Professor Rolf Gerritsen - Policy implications for the CDU Language and the Law project
  • Dr Samantha Disbray - Specific issues for NT Contact Languages in a legal setting

debate on health funding

Economist, doctor back NT Minister's call for debate on funding for elderly health care

21 August 2015

An economist and demographer is backing the need for a debate on health funding in the wake of controversial comments from an NT minister, who has said treating the elderly was coming at the expense of children.

Professor Rolf Gerritsen from Charles Darwin University said while Health Minister John Elferink was "colourful", the Minister's main point was right. Mr Elferink on Thursday said a debate was needed on health funding and that he suspected somebody who had end-stage renal failure would be happy to discontinue treatment so their grandchildren could have better health care.

Read more......

Elcho Island

Funeral fundraising plea after Elcho Island boy's shock death at sports carnival

21 August 2015

A young boy's shock death at a remote Northern Territory school sports carnival is being honoured by an online fundraiser to cover his funeral costs. The 11-year-old child died after being run over by a 4WD during a rope-pulling activity on Elcho Island in early August, police reports said.

Northern Institute Director, Professor Ruth Wallace was interviewed by Vicki Kerrigan yesterday on her ABC 105.7 Drivetime program. Professor Ruth Wallace works closely with the boy's grandmother, Kathy Guthadjaka, at the Darwin-based Northern Institute. Dr Wallace told 105.7 ABC Darwin the family was still coming to terms with the boy's deathThank you for supporting this beautiful community. READ STORY & Listen to the interview HERE


Bank Account Now Available for Funeral Support Gawa Community

BSB. 805050
ACCOUNT NO. 100083533
REFERENCE. Gawa Support

Funeral support for Gawa CommunityFuneral support for Gawa Community - Donations Appreciated

17 August 2015

You may have heard in the media recently about a terrible accident at a private Gawa School in which a young boy died at a sports carnival.  It is with great sadness that we advise this child was Kathy (Gotha) Guthadjaka’s youngest grandson. Gotha, as she is more commonly known, is a researcher with Northern Institute and our ‘Elder on Country’, a highly respected Elder, colleague at CDU and a dear friend to many. Gotha recently won the 2015 NAIDOC Top End Elder of the Year (female) award. Gotha and her husband Colin are very much a part of the NI family and their loss is being felt across the Institute and beyond.

In Gotha’s honour, and with permission of the family, NI are initiating a fundraiser to help the family and community to cover funeral expenses.

The cost of a funeral in a remote island community of Northern Territory is significant. However, there are added expenses that need to be met including flights for family and Elders from the mainland as well as accommodation (camping equipment & bedding) and meals during their stay. An Eventbrite page has been set up to take donations HERE. We are asking for people to please give a little to help take the burden off this hurting family at this very difficult time. Your support will help a community to heal from this tragic event.  Thank you!

Any queries can be directed to the Northern Institute at or telephone 08 8946 7468. 


Inger Mewburn


Over the past 18 months ANU have been crafting a MOOC to address PhD student resilience. The MOOC addresses a different emotion for each of the 10 weeks. The course explores confidence, frustration, loneliness, fear, curiosity, confusion, boredom and love. The content explores how this emotion can affect PhD progress in both positive and negative ways and how supervisors can recognise and work to combat the negative effects.

ANU wanted the course to be relevant to students and supervisors, so have focussed on describing some common reactions to these emotions and how they might manifest in sometimes puzzling behaviour. Students might use the course to examine their own reactions, while supervisors might use it to explore some strategies they can use to help. ANU have written it in plain language so it can also be accessible to the supports of PhD students, both university administrators and family and friends. ANU has supported the development and free distribution of this MOOC as a service to the community and hopes you will encourage your staff and students to participate.


Queries to Inger Mewburn, Thesis Whisperer

  • Twitter: @thesiswhisperer
  • Skype: Thesiswhisperer
  • Blog:

Jeff McMullen


4 August 2015

Northern Institute staff had the pleasure of attending a book launch by Jeff McMullen on Tuesday. The book by Rosie Scott is entitled The Intervention - An Anthology''. Professor Steve Larkin opened the event and a Welcome to Country was given by Bilawara Lee. Jeff McMullen spoke and introduced Rosalie Kunoth-Monks, Elder and Northern Territory Australian of the Year, for her presentation. The event was attended by Vice Chancellor Professor Simon Maddocks. 

Read more about the book here

Dr Tom Wilson

Introducing Dr Tom Wilson to the NI team

01 August 2015

Dr Tom Wilson has now joined the Northern Institute's Demography and Growth Planning Team. Tom brings with him a wealth of experience and expertise in the field of demography and is a very welcome addition to our skilled research team. Tom brings with him an ARC entitled 'Improving Sub-national Population Forecasts' in conjunction with researchers Dr Francisco Rowe and Professor Ludi Simpson.

Project Summary

The aim of this project is to make significant advances in two related areas of regional, council area and local population forecasting, namely improving accuracy, and providing an indication of forecast uncertainty. Population forecasts often turn out to be far more inaccurate than users realise and fail to come with any information about reliability. Every year forecasts inform a wide variety of planning and policy development activities and influence investment decisions worth billions of dollars. In order to increase the value of forecasts to users, this project aims to combine methods from a range of disciplines to devise more accurate ways of forecasting populations, and provide accompanying information on their likely error.

Welcome Tom!

Read his current bio here

Prof Wallace meets with Indonesian Ministry

Meeting with Delegates from the NI meets with Indonesian Ministry

31 July 2015

Professor Wallace met with official delegates from the Indonesian Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Friday to discuss opportunities for trilateral economic development with Indonesia, Timor Leste and Northern Australia. Also on the agenda opportunities for collaboration between the Indonesian Consulate and Northern Institute to develop capacity and projects that have impact in our region.

Professor Wallace was presented with a gift from delegates at the meeting.

Third Karrabing Film Collective

Third Karrabing Film Collective short makes Melbourne film festival debut

31 July 2015

The Karrabing Film Collective is a collective in the true sense of the word. All 25 to 30 members function both as actors and crew in their films; all have equal footing in their projects. "We're trying to develop a different mode of film production in which everyone has a specific role and an individual role," says director Elizabeth Povinelli , who has travelled back and forth between New York – where she is a professor of anthropology and gender studies at Columbia University – and outer Darwin for the past 31 years. read more....

Karrabing Film CollectiveBelyuen film collective selected for Melbourne International Film Festival

29 July 2015

A film made by a group of people from a Northern Territory Aboriginal community has been selected to feature at an international film festival. The Karrabing Film Collective is made up of members of the Belyuen community, on the Cox Peninsula across Darwin Harbour from the city. The Karrabing Film Collective has made movies about understanding dreamtime stories in the modern world and overcrowded government housing in Belyuen. The collective began when some of the members were homeless and dreamt of being film stars.

"We were actually going to do an ABC show and that got cancelled and everyone decided, when we were sitting there, that we'd just make our own movies," said collective member and NI Adjunct Prof. Beth Povinelli.

Read the full story here

Linda & Gotha

CDU researchers win NAIDOC Awards

by Leanne Miles, First Nations Telegraph

15 July 2015

Two prominent Indigenous researchers at the Northern Institute at Charles Darwin University have taken out Darwin NAIDOC 2015 Awards.

Read the full story here

Dr (Payi) Linda Ford and Gotha (Kathy) GuthadjakaCDU researchers win NAIDOC Awards

14 July 2015

Two prominent Indigenous researchers at the Northern Institute at Charles Darwin University have taken out NAIDOC 2015 Awards (Darwin). Part-time Senior Research Fellow Gotha (Kathy) Guthadjaka won the Elder on Country (Female) Award, while Senior Research Fellow Dr (Payi) Linda Ford won the Caring for Country Award.

Ms Guthadjaka is a senior elder from Gäwa, a small homeland community on Elcho Island in north-east Arnhem Land. She is passionate about not only preserving traditional knowledge, but also sharing this knowledge with the greater global community.

Dr Ford is Aboriginal and identifies as Rak Mak Mak Marranunggu, from Kurrindju, on the Finniss River, Northern Territory.

   read more....

NI NAIDOC Group shot 2Northern Institute celebrates two wins at the 2015 NAIDOC awards

13 July 2015

Saturday 11 July at Skycity Casino Northern Institute staff attended the NAIDOC 2015 Ball & Awards night to support two of their colleagues who were award finalists.  And the stars aligned that night as Gotha (Kathy Guthadjka) accepted the award for 'Elder of the Year' 2015 and Dr Payi Linda Ford accepted an award for 'Caring for Country'. CONGRATULATIONS to both amazing women who are inspiring friends, colleagues and researchers.

View more pictures taken at the event

Hannah - NI researcher

NI researcher presents on Indigenous Incarceration at 2015 Crime, Justice and Social Democracy International Conference

10 July 2015

Hannah Payer from NI’s Demography & Growth Planning Research Team presented at the Crime & Justice Conference 2015 held in Brisbane this week.  The presentation was entitled ‘Closing the Justice Gap? Researching demographic impacts from the incarceration of Indigenous people in the Northern Territory’ from a paper written by Hannah and Dr Andrew Taylor and Tony Barnes from the Northern Institute. 

Abstract:    The release of the latest Social Justice and Native Title report by the Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice Commissioner again emphasised the significant over-representation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in prison. During 2000-2013, the imprisonment rate for Indigenous Australians increased by 57 per cent while the non-Indigenous rate remained fairly stable. Subsequently, the latest Australian Bureau of Statistics data on prisoners in Australia showed there were 1,494 inmates incarcerated in the Northern Territory in 2013, of which 85.6 per cent were Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islanders; the highest proportion of all States and Territories. Many of these are thought to originate from small and remote communities and, with significant numbers of Indigenous men and women in prison in the NT, there are a range of potential impacts for individual communities including cultural, social as well as demographic impacts. This research explores the demographic impacts for individual remote communities using a range of secondary data and applying statistical techniques to highlight the range of impacts at community levels including outlining the social effects that a community of ‘average’ demographic structure might experience. The results demonstrate that some communities are significantly affected by the absence of residents in jail and from the churn of people to and from prison.


Karrabing Film Collective To Premier At Melbourne International Film Festival

10 July 2015

The Karrabing Film Collective's latest effort, "Windjarrameru, The Stealing C*nt$" is premiering in the Melbourne International Film Festival, August 1st and 4th, as a double feature with its last film, "When the Dogs Talked."

NI Adjunct Prof Beth Povinelli works with the Karrabing Film Collective to create their amazing films. Northern Institute hosted a screening of 'When the Dogs Talked' earlier this year at CDU. See the pics

Assoc Professor Alan Davison and Dr Eliza Kent Indigenous Engagement Programs and future linkages

9 July 2015

Professor Ruth Wallace met with Assoc Professor Alan Davison and Dr Eliza Kent from the University of New England, Armidale today to discuss Indigenous Engagement Programs and possible future linkages.

Dr KerstinDr Zander brings the heat to Europe

9 July 2015

Dr Kerstin Zander is on a research trip through Europe visiting current and future colleagues to collaborate on research papers and future joint grant opportunities.

Kerstin met with Dr Jürgen Meyerhoff (Technische Universität Berlin) and Prof Klaus Glenk (Scotlands Rural College (SRUC)) to analyse data and write papers on the social acceptability of climate change adaptation strategies. They are also polishing off a grant application for the Humboldt Foundation which will look at the economics of heat in developed economies such as Australia, Germany and Italy. read more.....


NAIDOC Award finalists include CDU researchers

06 July 2015

Two prominent Indigenous researchers at the Northern Institute at Charles Darwin University have been listed as finalists in the NAIDOC 2015 Awards (Darwin). The awards recognise Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists, scholars, sportspeople, elders and community members.

A part-time Senior Research Fellow at the Northern Institute, Gotha (Kathy) Guthadjaka is a finalist in the Elder on Country (Female) Award.

Northern Institute Senior Research Fellow Dr (Payi) Linda Ford is a finalist in the Caring for Country Award. read more......

Andrew TResearch shows Territorians are unique

01 July 2015

Dr Andrew Taylor, Senior Demographer with Northern Institute talks with Adam Steer from ABC 105.7 about how the Territory population is unique compared to the rest of the nation. 

Listen to the interview HERE (4.5mb, mp3 file*)

NI Tourism Research Showcased at Conference in London what matters25 June 2015

The International Conference of Tourism (ICOT) is being held in Middlesex University in London from 24 to 27 June 2015. There are 137 researchers from 42 countries participating in the conference.

On the morning of 25 June, NI researcher Dr. Benxiang Zeng presented his paper "What Matters in a Hotel? Clues from Customers’ Online Reviews".

Abstract: The e-WOM has been broadly recognised to have the influence on many aspects of tourist behaviour, such as on tourists’ production valuation and purchase decisions. The positive e-WOM associated with higher customer satisfaction will deliver positive images and potentially contribute to an increase in tourist numbers and consumption. Yet, little is known about the role and impacts of e-WOM in tourism development and hospitality management in regional areas where there is a big difference with urban areas. read more.....

Dr Linda

NI Researcher presents at Traditional Knowledge Conference.

24 June 2015

Indigenous researcher Dr Linda Ford is presenting this week at the TRADITIONAL KNOWLEDGE CONFERENCE: OUR WAYS OF KNOWING & OUR WAYS OF DOING – 25-26 June, Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre, Brisbane QLD. 

The conference brings the voices of some of Australia’s most recognized Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Elders, Leaders, Scholars and Educators to the forefront.  It aims to enrich the professional development and practice of practitioners from multidisciplinary backgrounds.  The event will answer the many questions and assist mainstream practitioners in gaining a better understanding and clearer insight into working with First Nations Australians. The conference core objective and vision is to bring the voices of Indigenous Elders to the forefront, and to provide a platform for our Elders to share their wisdom and their  knowledge in a culturally safe space. More information

Early Bird catches

NI Hosts National Competitive Grant Workshop

22 June 2015

'Early Bird catches the National Competitive Grant' workshop is one of a series of regular peer review and feedback activities (approx. every 6 weeks) with Professor Lawrence Cram's guidance leading up to application submission in late 2015/early 2016.

The first workshop requires each applicant/applicant team to present their application and how it will build on from the 'paper you wish you wrote'.

The workshop series was designed to be a collegial and supportive environment to gain valuable feedback from people outside your direct research team which will facilitate improved articulation and impact.

digital story competition

 Living Archive of Aboriginal Languages Project Launches Competition

22 June 2015

Announcing the Living Archive Digital Story Competition - you can win $1000!

More Details



NI Researcher Presenting at Yapaneyepuk, International Indigenous Education Symposium - 27-29 July, Melbourne VIC

23 June 2015

Northern Institute Indigenous Researcher Dr Linda Ford will be presenting Day 2 11am (28 July). Presentation title: Caring about Ceremony:Indigenous Knowledge across boundaries of time, space and society.

Linda will join other Leading International First Nations Educators.

2015 Yapaneyepuk,
‘Walking Together to Make a Difference’ 
An Indigenous Education Symposium 2015

View the program at the link

Kate Golebiowska

NI Researcher to Present at International Population Conference

19 June 2015

Northern Institute researcher, Dr Kate Golebiowska will be presenting at the 8th International Conference on Population Geographies held in Brisbane in July 2015. Kate will be presenting on research from a joint project with NI's Alicia Boyle. The title of the presentation is:

How to engage 'untapped' labour force to assist the Northern development? Case study of Darwin, Northern Territory (NT)

Read more about the conference

Read Dr Kate Golebiowska research profile here

Aboriginal station workers

Indigi-Briz chats with Delyna Baxter about her exhibition on Aboriginal pastoral workers

15 June 2015

Andy from Indigi-Briz (1-3pm Sundays) chats with Alice Springs-based researcher Delyna Baxter about her interviews with around 350 Aboriginal pastoral workers for her exhibition at the Australian Stockman’s Hall of Fame.

Original air date: Sunday 14 June, 2015.


Indigenous stockmen

Indigenous stockmen and women honoured in outback Queensland museum display

11 June 2015

A new display in an outback Queensland museum has opened to tell the stories of Indigenous stockmen and women across Australia. The Australian Stockman's Hall of Fame at Longreach, in the state's central-west, received federal funding for the project, which involved years of research and hundreds of people being interviewed across Queensland, the Northern Territory, Western Australia and Tasmania.

Curator and researcher Delyna Baxter said the role of Indigenous people on outback stations had sometimes been overlooked, but this was the first "national" approach to preserve the history for future generations.

"I think so - there have been other projects - I know the Canning Stock Route project was based in Western Australia, on life on the Canning Stock Route, but this exhibition looks at people's lives and contributions across Australia, particularly the northern part of the country," she said.

read more....


Flow-on from imprisonment hits NT

28 May 2015

Experts are investigating the social effect of the disturbing rate of incarceration among Indigenous Australians.

Australians are 16 times more likely to be locked up if they are Indigenous.

New research has indicated that up to 14 per cent of male residents are likely to be missing from remote Indigenous communities in the Northern Territory at any time, due to incarceration.

Research Associate Hannah Payer, from the Northern Institute at Charles Darwin University, says communities face severe impacts when such large proportions of males aged 20 to 39 years old were absent due to imprisonment.

read more.........

heat-stress-millions - Kerstin Zander

Incarceration ‘impacts on Indigenous communities’

25 May 2015

Researchers have indicated that up to 14 per cent of male residents are likely to be missing from remote Indigenous communities in the Northern Territory at any time due to incarceration.

Northern Institute researchers at Charles Darwin University highlighted the impacts that communities faced when large proportions of  males aged 20 to 39 years old were absent from their communities due to imprisonment.

Research Associate Hannah Payer said the high number of young men missing from communities due to incarceration could affect population growth and bring about severe dysfunction.

“It is important to highlight the magnitude of the impact that high Indigenous incarceration rates in the NT have on communities,” Ms Payer said.


heat-stress-millions - Kerstin Zander Heat stress costs Australia ‘$6.9 billion a year’

05 May 2015

The impact of heat stress on productivity in the workplace throughout Australia is costing the economy billions of dollars each year, with research suggesting office workers are also affected. The research published in the journal “Nature Climate Change” today is the first to examine the economic costs of heat stress in Australia.

Lead researcher Dr Kerstin Zander from the Northern Institute at Charles Darwin University said the study indicated that heat stress related reductions in workplace productivity were as high as for many chronic diseases.


cota_event_-_Andrew taylor Report to address expected rapid growth in NT seniors

30 April 2015

Researchers will discuss impacts from anticipated rapid growth in the number of seniors living in the Northern Territory at a presentation tomorrow (Friday, 1 May). Northern Institute researchers at Charles Darwin University will discuss results of a major survey of seniors in light of an anticipated doubling of the NT’s proportion of population aged 65 years and over by 2041. The survey, run in partnership with the Council on the Ageing NT (COTA NT), targeted about 2000 Territorians, including non-Indigenous people aged 50 years and over and Indigenous aged 45 years and over.

Senior Research Fellow Dr Andrew Taylor said the presentation would discuss key findings, including large anticipated growth in Indigenous Territorians aged 65 and over. The number of Indigenous seniors in the NT was expected to increase at around five per cent a year until 2041 due to past and future life expectancy improvements.


price, BatchelorBatchelor Area Pre-School Wins Our 2015 ‘Close the Gap’ Photo Comp

01 April 2015

Lyn Ashford a Pre-School assistant at Batchelor Area Pre-School sent in the winning pic of Bruce (pictured) learning to write for our recent ‘Close the Gap’ Photo Competition.  Director Professor Ruth Wallace attended the pre-school last week to meet Bruce and his friends and to hand over the prize pack.  Congratulations to the Pre-School for contributing and being involved.

Read more.....

Christin Black NI Researcher Attends 'Talking Circle' In Canada This Week

25 March 2015

Northern Institute researcher, Dr Christine Black, was invited by Professor Zuni Cruz, the Visiting Chair of the Saskatchewan Law Foundation to join a group of Indigenous legal scholars, writers and jurists from the United States and Canada to discuss issues around Indigenous Law and Justice.

The Saskatchewan Law College’s Native Law Centre hosts the three day 'Talking Circle'. Part of the discussions will be about the establishment of the first Indigenous Law Institute in the United States. The Institute will be established in the University of New Mexico Law School which is Prof Zuni Cruz’s home university. Dr Black will also give a guest lecture during her stay.

Cathy BowIndigenous languages archive showcased to global audience

12 March 2015

A unique digital archive of endangered literature in Northern Territory Indigenous languages, complied by Northern Institute researchers at Charles Darwin University, has been showcased at an international conference in Hawaii. More than 450 minority language conservation stakeholders from around the world attended the four-day event in Honolulu and shared theories and practices on preserving the world’s endangered languages.

CDU Project Manager Cathy Bow demonstrated the Living Archive of Aboriginal Languages at the recent International Conference on Language Documentation and Conservation.

“We received a very positive reception at the conference, with people from interstate and overseas interested in adopting similar methods for their archives,” Ms Bow said.

Read more ....

Prof Ruth International Women’s Day event to celebrate Indigenous researchers

2 March 2015

Prominent Indigenous women will share stories about their work “on country” at an annual International Women’s Day (IWD) event at Casuarina campus on Friday (6 March).

NT Minister for Women’s Policy Bess Nungarrayi Price will present the opening address at the IWD Event, which is being organised by the Northern Institute at Charles Darwin University.

Northern Institute Director, Professor Ruth Wallace said the event would focus on encouraging young Indigenous women to consider a career in research.

“This event provides an excellent opportunity to celebrate the research achievements of local Indigenous women, many of whom are leading researchers,” Professor Wallace said.

Read more....

Bruce Birch Researcher records Territory ‘true talk’

2 March 2015

A researcher will capture the unique ways Territorians speak via a series of audio recordings for a national database.

AusTalk Data Collection Manager Bruce Birch has begun recording the speech of long-term Territorians at the Northern Institute at Charles Darwin University for the AusTalk database.

The database will help researchers gain better understandings of spoken Northern Territory-Australian English by recording residents of various ages and backgrounds and from remote, rural and urban areas.

“By creating a database that shows how Australian English is spoken across the country, we gain the opportunity to compare speech across different regions,” Mr Birch said.

Read more....

Huw BrokenshaReport forecasts Indigenous pension disadvantage

2 March 2015

Researchers are investigating how proposed changes to age pension eligibility might affect the Northern Territory’s Indigenous population.

Researchers Dr Andrew Taylor and Huw Brokensha, from the Northern Institute at Charles Darwin University, explored potential impacts of the 2014 Federal Budget’s proposed retirement age increase to 70 by 2035.

Mr Brokensha said the NT Indigenous population’s shorter life expectancy compared with the non-Indigenous population could lead to a disproportionate “enjoyment” of retirement years.      Read more....

Researcher to explore impacts of NT Indigenous incarceration ratesHannah Payer

09 February 2015

A researcher will hold a public lecture on how remote Indigenous communities might be affected by high Indigenous incarceration rates in the Northern Territory.

Northern Institute Research Associate at Charles Darwin University, Hannah Payer will raise awareness about social and economic issues faced by communities when fellow community members are incarcerated.

Ms Payer said an example of economic impact included the loss of work-ready residents due to incarceration.     

Read more....

Andrew Taylor


Is Darwin dying?

20 January 2015

Vicki Kerrigan from ABC Radio Darwin 105.7 talks to our NI Demographer, Dr Andrew Taylor (pictured), about the 2500+ people that left Darwin in 2014.  Interviewed on Tuesday 20 January 2015.

Listen to the interview HERE (mp3 file*)

*Thank you to ABC Darwin for providing the soundfile 


Professor Ruth WallaceResearchers shed light on North Australian development

1 December 2014

Leading researchers have discussed the future of development in Northern Australia at a recent public conference in Darwin.

Speakers at the event highlighted factors to consider when planning for development in the North, including employment, migration, tourism, town planning and sustainability.

The “Northern Perspective: Northern Australian Development Conference” was organised by the Northern Research Futures Collaborative Research Network (CRN), of which Charles Darwin University is a collaborator.

CRN project manager and Northern Institute director at CDU, Professor Ruth Wallace said the event offered an opportunity for the wider community to understand key future development issues.   Read more....

Dr Tess Lea

‘Darwin’ shortlisted for prestigious literary award

12 December 2014

A history of Darwin written by an Adjunct Professor with Charles Darwin University’s Northern Institute has been shortlisted for the Victorian Premier’s Literary Award for 2015.

“Darwin”, is one of six finalists in the prestigious award’s non-fiction category. Published in 2014 by New South Books, it was one of a series commissioned on Australia’s capital cities by prominent Australian writers.

“Darwin” is the only book from the series to be nominated for the Victorian Premier’s Literary award.

Read more....

nad-conference-darwinResearchers shed light on North Australian development

1 December 2014

Leading researchers have discussed the future of development in Northern Australia at a recent public conference in Darwin.

Speakers at the event highlighted factors to consider when planning for development in the North, including employment, migration, tourism, town planning and sustainability.

The Northern Perspective: Northern Australian Development Conference was organised by the Northern Research Futures Collaborative Research Network (CRN), of which Charles Darwin University is a collaborator.

CRN project manager and Northern Institute director at CDU, Professor Ruth Wallace said the event offered an opportunity for the wider community to understand key future development issues.  Read more....

Researchers measure tourist satisfaction

18 November 2014

Researchers are encouraging anyone who has visited the Northern Territory Outback as a self-drive tourist to complete an online survey.

Charles Darwin University Senior Research Fellow at the Northern Institute, Dr Andrew Taylor said the responses would reveal tourists’ main issues when driving to or around the region.

Dr Taylor said data from the “Survey of self-drive tourists to the Northern Territory Outback” could help government and industry stakeholders plan for a sustainable and long-term tourism industry in the region.

Read more....

CDU shares in $4.4 million to support Indigenous researchers

ford-arcawardARC Discovery Indigenous

5 November 2014

Northern Institute researcher Dr Linda Payi Ford will lead a $99,537 project to develop appropriate ways to preserve, interpret and disseminate recordings of Indigenous ceremonial performances in the Wagait-Daly region of the Northern Territory.  

Preserving knowledge of Indigenous ceremonial performance, sharing wisdom and experiences of Koori elders, and discovering how Indigenous identity in remote communities is shaped by organised sport are some of the important new research projects to be undertaken by Australia’s Indigenous researchers with new funding announced recently.

Minister for Education, the Hon. Christopher Pyne MP, has announced almost $4.4 million for ten new research projects through the Australian Research Council’s (ARC) Discovery Indigenous scheme, which develops and supports the research expertise of Indigenous Australian researchers.

Minister Pyne said the funding scheme was a vital programme allowing Indigenous researchers to excel in their chosen fields of study.

“The researchers involved in the ten projects announced today will make a valuable contribution to the pool of knowledge in Australia and develop the research expertise of Indigenous Australian researchers.”




Smartphone apps used to save endangered Indigenous languages

ABC News Story

Published on October 30, 2014

Indigenous elders in the Northern Territory are trying to save their endangered language using a smart phone app and crowdsourcing software.


appApp helps preserve endangered Indigenous language

27 October 2014

In the same way that basic words and phrases are used to help people learn languages for overseas travel, the smartphone app for the Marrithiyel language will start with the development of about 200 words and phrases. Linguists working on the project estimate that less than a hundred people in the Daly River region can speak the Marrithiyel language. They're hoping the smartphone app will help reach young people who only have a limited understanding.

Read the full story at SBS news.


Jan SalmonDarwin’s hinterland development bucks national experience

6 October 2014

The transformation of Darwin’s hinterland during the past 70 years into a shire of more than 20,000 people is unique for an Australian capital city.

Charles Darwin University researcher Jan Salmon has mapped the development of Darwin’s hinterland (Litchfield Shire) using GIS software as part of her research entitled “Drivers of change in Darwin’s hinterland”. With more than 20 years’ experience as a town planner, Ms Salmon moved to the NT nine years ago. Last year she joined CDU’s Northern Institute as a research associate after completing her Masters degree.

“Darwin’s hinterland displays a complex mixture of rural living, a multi-million-dollar horticulture industry, conservation and water catchment protection areas, and Aboriginal lands,” Ms Salmon said.


Dr Tom Brewer Community asked to map Darwin Harbour’s future

6 October 2014

Darwin residents have begun responding to an innovative survey designed to gather data on their favourite places around the harbour.

Charles Darwin University’s Northern Institute researcher Dr Tom Brewer said the first results had just started to filter in. “It’s early days at the moment, but results are starting to come in and the data is being entered,” Dr Brewer said.

Some 2000 survey packs were randomly distributed to residents in the Darwin catchment area last month, asking them to nominate their favourite places around the harbour. The packs contained a survey, a satellite map of the harbour and list of values, and a set of stickers.


Dr Andrew Taylor Population projections help reveal NT’s future

5 August 2014

The proportion of Territorians aged 65 years and over is projected to more than double by 2041.

Northern Institute researchers at CDU have been working with the Northern Territory Department of Treasury and Finance to develop population projections for the NT and its regions. The projections map the changing population for the Territory to the year 2041 and indicate future growth in the demands for services and infrastructure.

Northern Institute Senior Research Fellow, Dr Andrew Taylor said that population change fluctuated greatly in the Northern Territory with high rates of growth very dependent on major construction projects.

“Based on historical evidence and anticipated trends, we anticipate long-term growth to continue at around 1.5 per cent a year, which would see the Territory’s population reach about 360,000 by 2041,” he said.


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