MISC researchers contribute to new Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence

Monash Indigenous Studies Centre (MISC) Associate Professor Bruno David, Professor Ian McNiven and Professor Lynette Russell are contributing to a new national research project, The Australia Research Council (ARC) Centre of Excellence for Australian Biodiversity and Heritage.

Associate Professor Bruno David , Professor Ian McNiven and Professor Lynette Russell are members of the Centre of Excellence for Australian Biodiversity and Heritage, an initiative which will see researchers from institutions around the world embark on a seven-year, $45.7-million research quest to investigate the beginning of Australia’s unique biodiversity and Indigenous heritage, while inspiring Australian children to engage with science.

Launching in 2017, it will bring together 20 institutions and museums worldwide to unlock the history of Australia, Papua New Guinea and eastern Indonesia from 130,000 years ago until the time of European arrival.

The first of its kind in the world, the Centre will encourage budding young scientists through a unique outreach program at schools and museums throughout Australia, and will focus on nurturing the careers of Indigenous and female researchers.

It will comprise seven Australian universities – the University of Wollongong as a co-ordinating institution, Monash University, James Cook University, the University of New South Wales, the Australian National University, the University of Adelaide and the University of Tasmania – together with leading organisations in public education and engagement, including the Australian Museum, Queensland Museum, South Australian Museum and the State Library of New South Wales.

The Centre represents a unique integration of multidisciplinary expertise, bringing together researchers from humanities and social sciences, such as archaeology, and Indigenous and museum studies, with scholars from science, technology, engineering and mathematics disciplines – including Earth and climate sciences, ecology and genetics.

The funds will support around 40 new research positions and more than 50 new research students over the lifetime of the Centre.

Congratulations to the MISC researchers and also to the staff in the Arts Research and Business Development Office who supported this application.