The South Australian Aboriginal Health Research Accord marked a new era not only for SAHMRI's research but for how Aboriginal health research will be done across the state.
Signing this Accord signalled a significant shift in Aboriginal health research - towards research that empowers Aboriginal communities to be partners in research.
Principles of the Accord
There are nine key principles of the Accord:
- 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 in developing, implementing and translating research.
- PARTNERSHIP. Researchers 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 ensure 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.
Signatories to the Accord
On 2 September 2014 this historic Accord was signed by key partners in South Australia, including:
- Professor Richard Russell AM, Pro Vice-Chancellor Research Operations / Dean of Graduate Studies, The University of Adelaide
- Professor David Lloyd, Vice Chancellor and President, University of South Australia
- Professor David Day, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research), Flinders University
- Mrs Janice Rigney, Chair, Council of Aboriginal Elders South Australia
- Mr Shane Mohor, Acting Chief Executive Officer, Aboriginal Health Council of South Australia
- Mr Raymond Spencer, Chair of the Board, South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute