13 October 2021

Djon Mundine OAMTwo prominent Aboriginal thought leaders will join the University of South Australia as part of a new Visiting Research Fellowship scheme.

Curator, artist and activist, Djon Mundine OAM, and author, researcher and arts critic, Dr Tyson Yunkaporta were named the inaugural Pirku murititya UniSA Visiting Research Fellows.

Mundine is a Bandjalung man from the Northern Rivers of New South Wales, and Dr Yunkaporta is from the Apalech clan from Western Cape York.

Under the Visiting Research Fellowship scheme, which is being supported by private donors and corporate sponsors and matched by the University, 500 researchers from across the world will collaborate with UniSA researchers over the next five years – and First Nations-led research will be a key component.

UniSA Deputy Vice Chancellor: Research and Enterprise, Professor Marnie Hughes-Warrington says the scheme is about investing in global partnerships to drive change at both local and international levels.

“When researchers work alone, they produce great outcomes. When researchers collaborate, they achieve remarkable outcomes,” Prof Hughes-Warrington says.

“We’re inviting the world’s best to work alongside UniSA researchers, industry and the wider community to generate new ideas and practices that not only provide solutions locally but position the State as a global leader in pioneering research.

Dr Tyson Yunkaporta “We are delighted to be working with Djon and Tyson, who each bring with them a wealth of experience and expertise in their respective fields.

“Djon is celebrated as a foundational figure in the criticism and exhibition of contemporary Aboriginal art.

“Tyson’s work – including his award-winning book Sand Talk - provides us a different way to make sense of the world.

“Their participation as Visiting Research Fellows is part of our commitment to grow the community of Aboriginal researchers and support First Nations-led research globally.

“We hope the Fellowships are just the start of new connections with researchers, practitioners and institutions around the world that will grow into an international network of innovation with South Australia at the centre.”

UniSA’s Visiting Research Fellowship scheme helps to advance the university’s reconciliation commitments and aspirations to shape a better world. Fellows will explore a range of issues, from COVID-19, child protection, and economic transformation to climate change, artificial intelligence, and waste management.

While travel remains restricted, Visiting Research Fellows will begin their collaborations remotely with UniSA in anticipation of their visit to Adelaide as soon as borders open.

It is intended that Fellows will live and work in Adelaide for one month with their stay funded through private donors and each donation matched by the University.

There will be up to 25 positions each year specifically available to researchers who identify as having Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander, or First Nations heritage, and from DFAT-aid recipient countries.

More information about Visiting Research Fellows is available on the scheme’s website: https://www.unisa.edu.au/research/visiting-research-fellowships/

Media contact: Rosanna Galvin M: +61 434 603 457 E: rosanna.galvin@unisa.edu.au

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