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Indigenous Cultural and Intellectual Property Rights

6 Dec 1999

Kia ora, we just received this last week from an Australian list, don't think it has been circulated already on this list ( ? apologies if it has), thought it might be of interest to some ...

Our Culture: Our Future - the ground breaking report on Australian Indigenous Cultural and Intellectual Property Rights is now available online:

Whether you work in law, the rural industry, film, export, music, the arts, advertising, tourism or biotechnology, you will find a range of measures and recommendation that are relevant, providing we hope a blueprint towards a better cultural future.

I encourage your early reading of the report, in particular the range of recommendations appropriate to your area of work practice and interest.

Your active interest in and support of this report is the first step towards effective implementation of the practical reform proposals.

The executive summary can be found at:


Indigenous Australians are concerned that their culture is currently under threat. In an age of commercialisation, new technology and increased globalisation, Indigenous people are concerned for the ongoing maintenance of their culture. Indigenous people seek better recognition and protection of their Indigenous Cultural and Intellectual Property.

Our Culture: Our Future is the first of its kind to comprehensively map the rights Indigenous Australians want to their cultural heritage and to comprehensively analyse the laws and policies that affect the ability of Indigenous Australians to realise these rights. The report also lists a range of measures for protecting Indigenous Cultural and Intellectual Property.


The report was written and researched by Ms. Terri Janke, Solicitor and Principal Consultant, Michael Frankel & Company, Solicitors.

It was commissioned by the Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies (AIATSIS) and the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commission (ATSIC). It has been accepted by ATSIC and the Indigenous Reference Group (IRG).

The report includes findings and recommendations developed out of extensive consultations with Indigenous peoples, government departments, industry organisations and interested individuals, as well as submissions in response to the previous discussion paper.


The report author Terri Janke is currently on leave, but can be contacted by email: Terri Janke

Should you:

  • wish to make any responses to or comments on the recommendations of the report
  • require any further information about this report
  • require relevant contacts within ATSIC, AIATSIS or the IRG,
please contact in the first instance:

Virginia Gordon

on behalf of Michael Frankel and Company, Solicitors

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