The National Centre for Reconciliation Practice explores the opportunities and challenges relating to the Australian reconciliation journey, looking at Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples' connections with reconciliation, through a rich program of engagement, outreach, education and research activities. 

It examines nationally significant reconciliation matters, including: Reconciliation Australia’s Five Dimensions (Historical Acceptance, Race Relations, Equality and Equity, Institutional Integrity, Unity), Cultural Safety, Indigenous Knowledges, Indigenous Rights (e.g. Self-determination, Sovereignty, Treaty), Meanings of Reconciliation, Place, Reconciliation Movements, Reparative Justice, and Truth-Telling.

The National Centre builds on Swinburne’s strong history of national academic and industry leadership in reconciliation. We were the first university to attain an Elevate Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) and are currently on our second Elevate RAP. We co-organised the inaugural National RAP Conference, and co-signed, with 13 other Elevate RAP organisations, a declaration of support for the Uluru Statement from the Heart.

Our vision

Advance national industry, community and academic understandings of reconciliation and help lead national systemic change.

Our unique, multidisciplinary capabilities in reconciliation

Explore nationally significant reconciliation matters

Advocate for national systemic change

Engage with industry, community, academia and governments

Undertake education, research, engagement and outreach activities

Utilise technology-based approaches

Reconciliation at Swinburne

The National Centre for Reconciliation Practice leads the development and implementation of Swinburne's Elevate Reconciliation Action Plan.

Our research

The National Centre for Reconciliation Practice has four interrelated program themes:

Cultural Safety (Lead: Dr Sadie Heckenberg)

Focuses on the area of culturally safe engagements with Indigenous peoples.

Indigenous Knowledges
(Lead: Dr Andrew Peters)

Explores applications of Indigenous Knowledges in contemporary societies.

Indigenous Rights (Lead: Emma Gavin)

Explores historical and contemporary Indigenous rights and resistance, nationally and internationally.

Reconciliation Movements
(Lead: Dr Wendy Hermeston)

Focuses on the Australian and international reconciliation movements.

A selection of our current projects include:

Project Researcher(s)
Aboriginal Private Rental Access in Victoria (Consumer Policy Research Centre Research Pathways Program) Professor Wendy Stone, Dr Andrew Peters
COVID-19 and Housing in Indigenous Communities in the Northern Territory Film Documentary Project Emma Gavin, Professor Therese Davis, Dr Jill Holt, Dr Evie Kendal, Professor Wendy Stone
Empowering Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Girls, Changing Communities (ARC Linkage Grant) Dr Sadie Heckenberg, Professor Andrew Gunstone
Examining Attitudes and Knowledges in the Victorian Reconciliation Movement (Reconciliation Victoria) Professor Andrew Gunstone, Dr Sadie Heckenberg, Dr Andrew Peters
Exploring the Social Impact of Australian Rules Football with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Communities (AFL co-funded) Professor Emma Sherry, Dr Andrew Peters
History of the Australian Reconciliation Movement Professor Andrew Gunstone, Wendy Hermeston, Dr Julie Kimber, Associate Professor Lorenzo Veracini, Professor Peter Read
Indigenising Higher Education and Vocational Education Curriculum Emma Gavin, Dr Sarah Barradell, Associate Professor Tim Bednall, Professor Amanda Benson, Suzette Cameron, Dr Robyn Delbridge, Professor Doa El-Ansary, Dr Loretta Garvey, Rachel Gilder, Dr Vincent Giarrusso, Jeremy Glover, Associate Professor Amirul Islam, Dr Evie Kendal, Dr Faith Kwa, Professor Gavin Lambert, Dr Jessica Mackelprang, Professor Rachael McDonald, Dr François Malherbe, Dr Katya Pechenkina, David Reid, Jenny Turner
Industry Focussed Online Training Packages on Reconciliation and RAPs (Reconciliation Australia) Professor Andrew Gunstone, Wendy Hermeston, Dr Katya Pechenkina
International Reconciliation Movements Wendy Hermeston, Prof Andrew Gunstone, Dr Julie Kimber, Associate Professor Lorenzo Veracini, Professor Peter Read
Making Policy Reform Work: a Comparative Analysis of Social Procurement (ARC Discovery Grant) Dr Emma Lee
National RAP Impact Measurement Tools (Reconciliation Australia) Wendy Hermeston, Professor Andrew Gunstone, Dr Krzysztof Dembek, Professor Robyn Eversole, Professor Emma Sherry, Associate Professor Chris Mason
On Country Engagements and Learning Materials Project (Life Again and University of Melbourne) Dr Andrew Peters, Professor Andrew Gunstone
Photography and Reconciliation: the Ngarrindjeri and the South Australian Museum (ARC Linkage Grant) Associate Professor Karen Hughes, Dr Justin Trounson
Swinburne Teachers and Regional and Remote Schools (STARS) (Access Quality Teaching Initiative, Victorian Department of Education and Training) Professor Susie Garvis, Associate Professor Therese Keane, Emma Gavin, Professor Andrew Gunstone
Unlocking Potential for Indigenous Women’s Entrepreneurship, Economic Empowerment and Leadership (Menzies Foundation) Professor Robyn Eversole, Associate Professor Emma Lee
Woiwurrung Named Supercomputing Facility (OzSTAR Upgrade) (Victorian Higher Education State Investment Fund) Professor Matthew Bailes, Professor Jarrod Hurley, Dr Sadie Heckenberg, Professor Andrew Gunstone

Our people

The Foundation Executive Director of the National Centre for Reconciliation Practice is Professor Andrew Gunstone, an international expert in academic and industry understandings of reconciliation.

Our people come from a range of disciplines, and academic, industry and community settings, and include research fellows, affiliates and industry fellows.

Did you know?

The National Centre for Reconciliation Practice publishes the Journal of Australian Indigenous Issues, a peer-reviewed academic journal publishing articles in all fields of Australian Indigenous Studies.

Find out more
Engaging with Reconciliation and Truth-telling Seminar

Engaging with Reconciliation and Truth-telling

A seminar on reconciliation and truth-telling and how the new National Centre for Reconciliation Practice will engage with these concepts.

Speakers: Professor Andrew Gunstone and Ian Hamm
Date: 1 June 2021

Our partners

The Centre collaborates with a number of external partners, including:

  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and organisations
  • Reconciliation Australia
  • Governments
  • Industry partners
  • Other universities

The Centre also works closely with the Moondani Toombadool Centre.

Our latest news

About 'Gathering Knowledge' by Arbup Ash Peters

This painting, which is shown as the banner, depicts the continuous cycle of footprints on a never-ending journey travelling around Swinburne’s campuses, which are located on Wurundjeri land.

The painting also shows meetings or gatherings that involve many people and Elders from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. The colours used in the painting are aligned to the corporate colours of Swinburne. The use of earthy ochre in the background, as well as yellow and black throughout gives a sense of the culture of Wurundjeri people while also reflecting the Aboriginal flag.

Arbup Ash Peters is a Wurundjeri/Taungurong Man, local artist and direct descendant of Coranderrk.

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Contact the National Centre for Reconciliation Practice

If you would like to work with us on nationally transformative reconciliation projects, we would like to hear from you. Email us at

Contact us