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Jefa Greenaway

From Kulin Country to Turtle Island – the role of Indigenous design advocacy today

The Australian Indigenous Design Charter was published in 2016 by the Design Institute of Australia (DIA) as Professional Practice Notes. Through a partnership with Deakin University, the DIA and Indigenous Architecture and Design Victoria (IADV) a ten point protocols document was developed to provide guidance for the ethical and appropriate referencing of Indigenous culture in design practice.

This ground-breaking document inspired the subsequent development of the International Indigenous Design Charter, launched in 2017 at the World Design Summit in Montreal. Both Charters are open and iterative documents that support the United Nations Declaration of Indigenous Human Rights that states the need for Indigenous peoples to be in control of their own culture.

How can Indigenous voices facilitate accurate and respectful representation of indigenous culture in both design practice and education and can Indigenous design networks showcase meaningful engagement and empower Community by showcasing cultural expression through design?


Jefa is director of Greenaway Architects (est. 1998) a holistic design practice undertaking architectural, landscape, interior and urban design projects for private, commercial and educational clients, and is currently Knowledge Broker | Lecturer at the University of Melbourne, with a focus on Indigenous curriculum development.

As founding chair of the not-for-profit advocacy group Indigenous Architecture + Design Victoria (IADV), Deputy Chair of the Public Arts Advisory Panel (City of Melbourne), Executive Committee member of INDIGO (International Indigenous Design Alliance) and member of the ATSI Cultural Heritage Oversight Committee (Melb Uni) he seeks to amplify opportunities to embed Indigenous knowledge systems and design thinking within both practice and academia.

Desna Whaanga-Schollum