Skip to Main Content
Skip navigation


Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies

Privileging Indigenous Research

When conducting research into issues related to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, it's important to remember that much research has been conducted about them, without their input or voices being heard. Non-Indigenous voices are often prioritised when discussing issues that affect Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

The institutions of scholarship, such as Universities, Colleges, and Research Institutions have not historically made spaces for the voices of minorities, many of which may be speaking from a place of experience rather than scholarly research. It's important to keep in mind that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander voices, opinions, and research should be considered when investigating Indigenous issues.

Before you get started, CAVAL has produced a guide for referencing Indigenous Knowledges. This is an excellent resource to guide you in respectfully acknowledging the knowledge and experiences of Indigenous people.

Indigenous Referencing Guidance for Indigenous Knowledges

See below some resources and tips for locating own voices content.


If the source is a book, check the foreword, afterword or author profile for a position statement from the author.

If the source is an article, check the abstract or introduction for any statement of the author's identity.

Without a specific statement, it can be difficult to determine whether a person identifies as Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander. Do not assume the author's identity if not explicitly stated. You can also try investigating the author's scholarly profiles or social media if the source does not say.


Many researchers have a Google Scholar profile. This is automatically generated when an author's works are indexed on Google Scholar. Unless the author has intentionally claimed their profile and made adjustments, this profile may contain incorrect information. However, if the author has claimed the profile, they may identify themselves there.

To find a Google Scholar profile, type author: Firstname Lastname into the search bar.

You can also try searching social media platforms for the author's name. If their profile is public, you may be able to pick it up through a Google search. Be careful to make sure you are looking at the correct profile.

If you know the author's institutional affiliation (such as the University or Research Institution they work for), you can try searching the institution's webpage for their professional profile. This may contain information about how they self identify.


Indigenous authors may be more likely to reference other Indigenous researchers' papers. You can use the reference list of the paper you have already found to locate works by other authors.

Some databases, such as Web of Science, Scopus or Google Scholar, allow you to view the "Cited by" papers of a particular work. Look for the "Cited by" link to find all papers that have reference lists that refer to your chosen paper.

Sources for Indigenous Vocies

Databases are collections of scholarly research, usually containing large collections of electronic journals, magazines, reports, audio visual material and books. Some databases may have overlapping content. They're often focused on a specific discipline or area of study, though some have a multi disciplinary or cross disciplinary focus.

The following databases include a range of Indigenous own voices content and research.

Journals are usually indexed in databases, or can be accessed individually. Journals usually have a discipline focus, often a very narrow one. Journals collect scholarly articles, often peer reviewed, on a particular topic, into issues and volumes. The journals listed here offer articles from an Indigenous perspective.

It has only been in recent years that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people have begun to fully participate in scholarly research about their own cultures and issues. However, there are a range of non scholarly sources available that are entirely or mostly created by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, where you can hear from people who may not be part of the scholarly institution.

Page Contact: ANU Library Communication Team