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Situating Indigenous Knowledges and Governance Within the Academy in Australia


Walter, M and Aitken, W, Situating Indigenous Knowledges and Governance Within the Academy in Australia, Handbook of Indigenous Education, Springer Singapore, EA McKinley and LT Smith (ed), Singapore, pp. 1-17. ISBN 978-981-10-1839-8 (2017) [Research Book Chapter]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2017 Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd.

DOI: doi:10.1007/978-981-10-1839-8_30-1


The 2012 Review of Higher Education Access and Outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People (the Behrendt Report) set a new direction in Indigenous/academy engagement. In contrast to previous (failed) policies, the report prioritizes fostering Indigenous leadership, embedding Indigenous knowledges within university curricula and ways of doing business, incorporating Indigenous governance across the sector as keys to improving Indigenous outcomes. Mediating a secure, sector-wide, normalized space for Indigenous knowledges, however, brings with it hazards as well as potential returns. Achieving a whole-of-university responsibility requires opening up a recognition of the non-Indigenous culture already deeply embedded in existing governance structures as a pivotal precursor to a normalized empowered Indigenous presence within sector governance systems. Failure to do so risks revitalizing tokenism and/or co-option. Developed from a 2011 submission to the Behrendt Report, updated to reflect changes emanating from that report, this chapter explores the challenges, constraints, and unexpected gains inherent in closing the ontological gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous understanding of Indigenous governance and knowledges within the academy.

Item Details

Item Type:Research Book Chapter
Keywords:Indigenous knowledges, ontological gap, color-blind racism
Research Division:Education
Research Group:Education systems
Research Field:Higher education
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding knowledge in human society
UTAS Author:Walter, M (Professor Maggie Walter)
UTAS Author:Aitken, W (Dr Wendy Aitken)
ID Code:121669
Year Published:2017
Deposited By:Office of the School of Social Sciences
Deposited On:2017-10-10
Last Modified:2019-09-09

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