About the Centre for Native Title Anthropology (CNTA)

The CNTA is a unit within the School of Archaeology and Anthropology in the College of the Arts and Social Sciences at the Australian National University. CNTA has been awarded successive grants since 2010 by the Department of the Attorney General to deliver professional development to anthropologists working in the native title arena.

CNTA now has two Directors. From July 1 2021, Professor David Trigger of the University of Western Australia has replaced the original Director Professor Nicolas Peterson. Professor Peterson nonetheless continues his association with the Centre, and remains the formal grantee of funding from the Attorney General’s Department.

In considering how best to support CNTA’s constituency, given the range of increasing challenges to the practice of anthropology, CNTA has appointed a second director, not least to acknowledge the many women anthropologists and researchers now working in the native title sector.

CNTA would like to welcome Ms Petronella Vaarzon-Morel as CNTA co-director with Professor Emeritus David Trigger.

Petronella’s anthropological experience as a teacher, fieldworker and academic, will make a positive contribution to CNTA’s capacity to support anthropologists in meeting emerging challenges in native title research environments.

ANU Research Fellow Dr Julie Finlayson continues her responsibility for the program content and activities of the Centre.

The sector encompasses primarily anthropologists employed by Native Title Representative Bodies (NTRBs) and Native Title Service Providers (NTSPs), as well as consultant anthropologists working in the Native Title arena.

CNTA is funded to deliver activities across 3 year periods. Our activities for 2019-22 were to comprise the following:

  • A 3-week Guided Research and Writing Program based on residence at the ANU and supervision and advice provided by the CNTA Director, and the Research Fellow
  • An annual conference with guest speakers
  • Several post-determination technical workshops for specific clients
  • Targeted cohort workshops

Due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, and the difficulties measures such as regional and state-wide lockdowns pose for workshops and other face-to-face delivery mechanisms, CNTA has been progressively developing and implementing online materials. These include sound and video recordings of virtual workshops, and specially commissioned pod and video casts on selective topics and themes relevant to the Centre’s remit from the Department of the Attorney General.

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Updated:  20 January 2022/Responsible Officer:  Head of School/Page Contact:  CASS Marketing & Communications