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A milestone event

Research News | 13 Aug 2014

Over 300 people attended the inaugural SA Aboriginal Health Research Showcase at the new South Australia Health Medical Research Institute (SAHMRI) building, North Terrace on 2-3 September. Wardliparingga, the Aboriginal Research Unit of SAHMRI, sponsored the event.

The highlight of the first day was the signing of the SA Aboriginal Health Research Accord. This was a significant milestone for Wardliparingga, and for Aboriginal health research in SA, in general. AHCSA has been a constant advocate of research done the right way with Aboriginal communities and participants, and has invested much time and effort into this cause over the past decade. The Aboriginal Health Research Scoping Study in 2005 recommended a central hub for Aboriginal health research and for better processes of engagement with the community.

In keeping with these recommendations, the Accord has committed SAHMRI, AHCSA, the Council of Aboriginal Elders and the three universities in SA, to conduct Aboriginal health research according to the following nine principles:

PRIORITIES Research should be conducted on priorities arising from and endorsed
by the Aboriginal community to enhance acceptability, relevance and accountability.

INVOLVEMENT The involvement of Aboriginal people and organisations is essential to developing, implementing and translating research.

PARTNERSHIP Research should be based on the establishment of mutual trust and equivalent partnerships, and the ability to work competently across cultures.

RESPECT Researchers must demonstrate respect for Aboriginal knowledge, Aboriginal knowledge systems and custodianship of that knowledge.

COMMUNICATION Communication must be culturally and community relevant and involve a willingness to listen and learn.

RECIPROCITY Research should deliver tangible benefits to Aboriginal communities. These benefits should be determined by Aboriginal people themselves and consider outcomes and processes during, and as a result of, the research.

OWNERSHIP Researchers should acknowledge, respect, and protect Aboriginal intellectual property rights and transparent negotiation of intellectual property use and benefit sharing should be ensured.

CONTROL Researchers must ensure the respectful and culturally appropriate management of all biological and non- biological research materials.

KNOWLEDGE TRANSLATION Sharing and translation of knowledge generated through research must be integrated into all elements of the research process to maximise impact on policy and practice.

Wardliparingga will now work with each of the universities to ensure that the principles are well understood and able to be implemented. The Companion Document to the Accord provides further information and advice regarding how the principles can be put into practice. Copies of the Accord and the companion document are available from Wardliparingga – wardliparingga@sahmri.com

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