Kimberley Indigenous Saltwater Science Project (KISSP)
Kimberley Marine Research Program: Project 1.5
Location: Kimberley region
Project Leader: Dean Mathews, Nyamba Buru Yawuru
Telephone: 9192 5600
- Integrate Indigenous knowledge and management practices into Kimberley marine conservation and management.
- Develop standard and agreed community process and protocols and a research agreement template to underpin marine research in the Kimberley and an implementation strategy to build awareness in the science community of the need for this engagement.
- Develop a framework and protocols for standardising data collection, storage and analysis methodologies that can be used to monitor saltwater country across the Kimberley. This includes the development of a training package for agreed research targets for delivery to Rangers to develop internal capacity in these standardised techniques.
Final Reports, Tools and Training Package
Links to Kimberley Saltwater Country Research Proposal form:
During the planning stages, the project team identified three core areas of work required to address some of the current challenges experienced by both Kimberley researchers and saltwater managers around research activities. The project has been developed around these areas of work, described as three closely aligned core objectives. In short these are:
- Integrate Traditional Ecological Knowledge and management practices into Kimberley marine conservation and management (led by Dr Beau Austin of the Research Institute for the Environment and Livelihoods, Charles Darwin University, Darwin)
- With Kimberley Prescribed Body Corporate and Indigenous community members, develop a standard research protocol for land and sea research in the Kimberley (led by Gina Lincoln of Mosaic Environmental for the Kimberley Land Council, Broome)
- Develop a standard framework for marine monitoring in the Kimberley with Indigenous ranger groups, (led by Rebecca Dobbs and Fiona Tingle of the Centre for Excellence in Natural Resource Management, University of Western Australia, Kununurra/Broome)
The methods to achieve these objectives will involve on-country meetings and workshops with Traditional Owners (TO). There will be three KISSP Working Group meetings to discuss cross-country issues and coordinate the project. There will also be seven on-country meetings (one with each community represented on the Working Group), coordinated by the Working Group representative from that country, with individual TO communities to facilitate their input into the project. To minimise project costs and the time commitment expected of TOs the meetings will be coordinated through the Working Group and jointly planned with all co-investigators to maximise outcomes from each meeting.
The project will assess current information, processes, protocols and agreements that TO’s use to manage and undertake research on country. This information is contained within plans for Indigenous Protected Areas (IPAs), Healthy Country Plans and other management plans. The co-investigators will build on this with TO groups in order to develop clarity and shared understanding of priority values and research targets across the Kimberley. This will inform the development of research and engagement protocols and templates, monitoring methodologies and the training package. The co-investigators will work together to develop clear processes for gathering information during the on-country meetings and seek endorsement of these from the KISSP working group prior to the meetings taking place.
Location for the project
Kimberley region, but involving the sea country and participation of the Wunambal Gaambera, Balangarra, Dambimangari, Bardi Jawi, Nyul Nyul, Yawuru and Karajarri people.
Project duration: 2015-2017
Austin B, Robinson C, Mathews D, Oades D, Wiggin A, Dobbs R, Lincoln G, Garnettt S. (2019) An Indigenous-Led Approach for Regional Knowledge Partnerships in the Kimberley Region of Australia. Human Ecology doi.org/10.1007/s10745-019-00085-9
Austin B. Using a Multiple Evidence Based approach to mobilise Indigenous knowledge and science. 2017 WAMSI Research Conference
Oades D, Field S. The Kimberley Marine Rseearch Program. AMSA 2017 Indigneous Workshop slides
Overviewing a new (draft) process for land & sea research on Kimberley saltwater Country Developed through the Kimberley Indigenous Saltwater Science Project 2016-2017 Presented by Gina Lincoln, Mosaic Environmental on behalf of the Kimberley Indigenous Saltwater Science (KISSP) working group. (April 11, 2017) Presentation slides
WAMSI Lunch and Learn Seminar- Kimberley Indigenous Saltwater Science – Thursday, 30 November 17, 12:00-1:00, Kensington Presentation slides
Above: Map showing the Aboriginal Corporations and Indigenous Ranger Groups partnering in the Kimberley Indigenous Saltwater Science Project - KISSP (courtesy of the Kimberley Land Council, 2016)
 A sub-project attached to Objective 3 is the development of a pilot training package for Indigenous Ranger groups around one selected saltwater monitoring methodology.