NI News

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 recieves 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 äwurrpa 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 Reconcilliation 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