Flinders embarks on new Australian research

New research at Flinders University will delve into Australia’s history of domestic violence, preserve cultural objects in the Clare Valley through digitisation, document the history of community centres and expand tourism to include more Indigenous walking trails around the country.

Federal Education Minister, Dan Tehan MP, today announced Flinders researchers have secured four new ARC grants in The Special Research Initiative (SRI) for the Australian Society, History and Culture scheme, with $975,535 in total funding over the next three years.

Associate Professor Catherine Kevin will lead an investigation into the lived experiences of domestic violence in Australia since 1850. By providing vital context, this research will enhance understandings of the ongoing crisis of domestic violence.

“The significance of this research lies in our goal to illuminate the cultural conditions that have either exacerbated or reduced rates of domestic violence in Australia.”

“We hope this will inform debates about strategies for preventing and responding to this problem. The project includes the first book-length history of domestic violence in Australia since 1850, articles, direct sector engagement and a digital database to build future research capacity,” says Associate Professor Kevin.

“We anticipate our new analysis will assist policy makers, service providers, and the public to understand historical processes that have shaped Australian gender relations for generations.”

Martindale Hall near Mintaro, South Australia.

A new project led by Associate Professor Jane Haggis and her research team will focus on a more sustainable model for the digital preservation of historically significant objects, stories and places at Martindale Hall and elsewhere in the Clare Valley.

“This project will generate new interdisciplinary knowledge about Martindale Hall, SA, and the historically significant objects it contains. We expect to develop a new method that embeds digitisation in historical and cultural knowledge and assists organisations to make better decisions about when and how to digitise.”

“The long-term benefits include improved public access to significant cultural heritage assets, return on investment for local history organisations, and protection of heritage by the communities that care for them.”

Vince Copley Senior, Elder of the Ngadjuri people of South Australia, says he is delighted the Flinders research team have received funding to undertake important work.

“We need to be recognised on our cultural landscapes.”

Professor Fran Baum, Director of the Southgate Institute for Health, Society and Equity will put together a highly skilled and multidisciplinary team of investigators to complete a comprehensive history of the development of community health centres and services in Australia.

“What unites us all is a deep commitment to the values and effectiveness of community managed health services,” says Professor Baum.

“Researching the history of these services is vitally important in terms of documenting their past achievements but also in being able to shine a light on how we can make primary health care policy and services more effective in the future, including for Aboriginal community controlled health services. “

With Covid-19 offering new opportunities for domestic tourism, Professor Stephen Muecke is looking into the inclusion of more Indigenous walking trials as part of a national map, and proposals for partnerships with local councils.

“These trails are far more than ‘tourism products’ or leisure activities,” says Professor Muecke.

“For Aboriginal families, the trails enact inter-generational knowledge transfer. They are practices that keep Aboriginal ways of life going, as they retain aspects of heritage, especially through their locations.”

“By working with two Indigenous partner communities, the project expects to generate new knowledge, reciprocal care, and tourism research using Indigenous theory and methods. We expect to develop a national trail map, a walking trail template, a proposal for a new trail with local councils, a conference of Indigenous trail leaders, academic articles, and a monograph.

“Building on the pioneering work of Nyikina elder Paddy Roe, from Broome, who started the Lurujarri Trail 30 years ago, this project should provide significant benefits to Indigenous communities, with revitalised knowledge of Country, business opportunities and a reconfiguration of knowledge about Australian places.”

Professor Robert Saint, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) at Flinders University says the research funded by the ARC Special Research Initiative will help us understand the society in which we live and provide better foundations of knowledge on which to base informed decisions that impact on our communities.

“All Australians benefit from Flinders’ outstanding research, which dives deeply into Australia’s past and present, seeking to understand community institutions, cultural characteristics and the vital contributions made by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.”

More info about new Flinders University ARC-SRI grants:

A history of domestic violence in Australia, 1850-2020 (SR200200460)

$176,511- Led by Associate Professor Catherin Kevin (Flinders University) with Professor Ann Curthoys (University of Sydney) And Dr Zora Simic (UNSW)

‘Slow’ digitisation, community heritage and the objects of Martindale Hall (SR200200900)

$277,224- Led by Associate Professor Jane Haggis with Dr Tully Barnett, Professor Heather Burke, Professor Penelope Edmonds, Professor Claire Smith, Dr Ania Kotarba (All Flinders), Emeritus Professor Margaret Allen (University of Adelaide), and Ngadjuri Elders Heritage and Land Care Council incorporated

A History of Community Health in Australia (SR200200920)

$265,000- Led by Professor Fran Baum (Flinders) with Dr Toby Freeman, Associate Professor Tamara Mackean, Professor Colin MacDougall, Dr Katy Osborne (All Flinders), Professor Warwick Andersson (University of Sydney), Prof Virginia Lewis (La Trobe University), Associate Prof David Legge (La Trobe University) Ms Patricia Turner (National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation), Ms Denise Fry (Sydney Local Health District), Mr Paul Laris (Paul Laris and Associates), Mr Anthony McBride, and Ms Jennifer Macmillan (La Trobe University)

Revitalising Country: The Lurujarri and Tjilbruke Walking Trails (SR200200977)

$256,800- Led by Professor Stephen Muecke (Flinders), Goolarabooloo Millibinyarri Indigenous Corporation and Kaurna Yerta Aboriginal Corporation

/Public Release. The material in this public release comes from the originating organization and may be of a point-in-time nature, edited for clarity, style and length. View in full here.