Partner Project

Following the Trade Routes


Following the Trade Routes is a cultural governance and research project establised by the Kimberley Aboriginal Law and Culture Centre (KALACC) seeking to create new understanding of cultural economies and trade routes that shaped Aboriginal societies across Australia, and to explore how such knowledge informs society and Indigenous cultural practice today.


The cultural practice aspects of the Following the Trade Routes centre on facilitating new and rejuvenated connections and practices of Aboriginal cultural trade between people and communities in the Kimberley region, Central Australia and South Australia, including trade of material and ceremonial items, songs and ceremonies, as well as knowledge and modes of cultural governance. A network of Aboriginal cultural practitioners, community and academic researchers has been formed by KALACC to support this work.

The research component of the project is seeking to document the new and rejuvenated processes of cultural trade occurring in the project, and connect Aboriginal cultural practitioners with existing research and archival knowledge to inform their practice.

Three core research questions have been posed by Aboriginal custodians to direct the research agenda of this project:

  • How have historic and contemporary processes of Indigenous cultural trade and exchange operated in the Kimberley and Desert regions?
  • How can knowledge of historic and regional trade routes inform cultural practices for a new generation of Indigenous leaders and knowledge custodians in Australia?
  • How can cross-cultural research networks and digital platforms be used to bring ancestral and archival knowledge together to enhance knowledge about Indigenous cultural trade and economies?

Workshops and events


Flights paths in ethnographic film making

A few weeks back I had the privilege of having Wayne Barker, cultural programs Director of @KALACC come to the Australian National University, thanks to support from Australian Studies Institute, to work on AV research material from the Following the…

Read More

Project Partners & Funders