12 April 2012

istock_000010965680XSmallThe University of South Australia is hosting anIndigenous Knowledges Symposium highlighting Indigenous practices of effective land and natural resource management.
The one-day symposium, titled ‘Water Sustainability and Wildfire Mitigation’, is being run by the university’sDavid Unaipon College of Indigenous Education and Research, and will cover firestick farming, wildfire mitigation, water sustainability, effective tree planting, and revegetation of country.
UniSA’s Dean of Indigenous Scholarship, Engagement and Research, Professor Peter Buckskin says the symposium offers an important framework for the exploration of Indigenous knowledge.
“This event is a wonderful example of the valuable role Indigenous knowledge must play in informing wider debate and research on issues of sustainability in Australia,” he says.
“It will bring long understood Indigenous knowledge about the environment into a research context and build a broader understanding of Indigenous science as it relates to the land.
“Being the oldest living culture of humanity we have lots to offer around looking after country and respect for flora and fauna.”
Conference Convenor is Dr Lewis ‘Yerloburka’ O’Brien, Kaurna elder and Adjunct Research Fellow with the David Unaipon College of Indigenous Education and Research.
Participants include Dr O’Brien, who will speak on Aboriginal ways of thinking and sustainability; UniSA’s Assoc Prof Irene Watson, who will cover respecting the integrity of Indigenous Knowledges; UniSA environmental modelling expert Prof John Boland, whose presentation is titled ‘Rainfall influences vegetation growth – does vegetation influence rainfall?’; and UniSA’s Dr Suzi Hutchings, who will speak on ‘Re-mythologizing the divide between the city and the bush: a perspective on changes to significant tree legislation in South Australia’.
Visiting speakers include Professor Bill Gammage from Australian National University, whose presentation is titled ‘The biggest estate on earth’; and Dr Anne Poelina, a Nyikini Traditional Owner from the Mardoowarra in Western Australia, whose presentation is called ‘Standing together for Kandri’.
The symposium will also include a journal launch of the Special Symposium Volume of the 2011 (20) (3) Griffith Law Review which includes presentations from the 2010 International Symposium: ‘The 2007 Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples: Indigenous survival, where to from here?’. The special Griffith Law Review volume was co-edited by Irene Watson and international lawyer Sharon Venne. 
The symposium is open to all who work and study in the area of land and natural resource management. For more information go to www.unisa.edu.au/ducier/symposium/

Media contact

  • Kelly Stone office (08) 8302 0963 mobile 0417 861 832 email kelly.stone@unisa.edu.au

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