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Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander led and governed research : a sign of social change
conference contributionposted on 06.12.2017, 00:00 by Bronwyn Fredericks
There has been a long history of research conducted on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. Linda Tuhiwai Smith (1999:3) makes the statement that she has heard that "we [Indigenous peoples] are the most researched people in the world". Historically, the vast majority of this research has been carried out by non-Indigenous people. Over the years some of this research has been undertaken without permission and without regard to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples’ rights. At times communities have not been aware that non-Indigenous people were undertaking research while within their communities. There has been a plethora of reports, books, articles and theses generated. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples have a wealth of experience and knowledge about research. It is this collective experience and knowledge that informs the newly established, and NH&MRC funded Centre for Clinical Research Excellence (CCRE). This CCRE is being lead and governed by the Queensland Aboriginal and Islander Health Council (QAIHC). QAIHC is the State peak body for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Community Controlled Health Services in Queensland. The CCRE is a partnership between QAIHC and the Queensland University of Technology, the University of Queensland, James Cook University, the National Heart Foundation, and the University of Wollongong. The establishment of the CCRE under the Community Controlled model of governance is unique and presents both opportunities and challenges for innovative partnerships between universities and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community organisations and stands in direct opposition to the research of the past.