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ItemSystems, Self, and Sovereignty: Non-Indigenous Practitioners Negotiate Whiteness in Aboriginal Partnerships(University of Western Ontario, 2018-02-27)Australia is built upon a foundation of colonial conquest, and it continues to implement government policies and systems of management based on a colonising logic and the denial of Indigenous sovereignty. This study employed qualitative methods and discourse analysis to draw on the experiences of six non-Indigenous Australians employed by the South Australian Government in Aboriginal partnerships and natural resource management. Drawing on critical Whiteness studies, the article reveals that participants in this cohort are largely critical of colonial structures of government and the inequalities that arise. Despite this critical awareness, there was often a difficulty in finding a language to describe the fog of Whiteness, along with the tendency to describe ecological knowledge at the expense of more complex issues of First Nations sovereignty.
ItemA new direction for water management? Indigenous nation building as a strategy for river health(Ecology and Society, 2017-06)Indigenous involvement in Australian water management is conventionally driven by a top-down approach by nonIndigenous government agencies, that asks “how do we engage Indigenous people?” and has culminated in the ineffective “consult” and “service delivery” processes evident in mainstream water management planning. This is a hopeful paper that identifies the critical importance of a “nation-based” approach for effective Indigenous engagement in water planning and policy through the work undertaken by the Ngarrindjeri Regional Authority (NRA) in the Murray Futures program. The NRA is an Indigenous government in the “settled-south” of Australia. Over past decades, the NRA has developed a range of political technologies that act as tools for redeveloping Ngarrindjeri Nationhood after colonial disempowerment and dispossession. These tools enable better collaboration with nonIndigenous governments, especially in natural resource management policy and practice. In turn, this has better enabled the NRA to exercise a decision-making and planning authority over the lands and waters in its jurisdiction, therefore, more effectively exercising its ongoing duty of care as Country. This paper presents a case study of the Sugar Shack Complex Management Plan, codeveloped by the NRA and the South Australian Government in 2015, to demonstrate the benefits that accrue when Indigenous nations are resourced as authorities responsible for reframing water management and planning approaches to facilitate the equitable collaboration of Indigenous and nonIndigenous worldviews. As a marker of the success of this strategy, the Ngarrindjeri Yarluwar-Ruwe Program, in partnership with the South Australian government, recently won the Australian Riverprize 2015 for delivering excellence in Australian river management.
ItemCaring for Ngarrindjeri country: collaborative research, community development and social justice(Faculty of Law, University of New South Wales, 2007)On 23 March 2007 at Goolwa near the mouth of the Murray River in South Australia, the Ngarrindjeri Nation launched the Ngarrindjeri Nation Yarluwar-Ruwe Plan: Caring for Ngarrindjeri Sea Country and Culture (the ‘NNYR Plan’). The NNYR Plan is the first Indigenous nation plan developed in South Australia and marks a major change in the way that the Ngarrindjeri leadership proposes to do business with non-Indigenous interests on Ngarrindjeri country. The NNYR Plan provides a strong statement of Ngarrindjeri rights, identity, authority and responsibility, but it is also a conciliatory document charting a vision for future, just collaborations between Ngarrindjeri and non-Indigenous institutions, governments, business and individuals.