Applied anthropology in Australia is an increasingly sought after and diverse field of social inquiry and research application. There are several reasons for this interest, including substantial anthropological involvement in the land claims process during the past three decades. Such a process has resulted in anthropologists working for Indigenous groups and land councils, documenting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander interests in land and sea, negotiating resource development agreements, undertaking ethnographic site surveys, presenting evidence in court. A number of contributions to this special edition of Practicing Anthropology provide details of these practical applications of anthropology in Australian settings. Nicolas Peterson describes some of the historial background to the introduction of land rights legislation in the Northern Territory, and Jim Birckhead discusses cultural heritage issues in national parks in New South Wales. Birckhead and Toussaint also raise concerns about anthropological practice and the ethics and politics of representation, including with reference to the relationship between gender and culture.

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