Melissa Marshall

Research Fellow, Nulungu Research Institute
Melissa Marshall (BA (Major Archaeology), Grad Dip Comp Sci, Masters Applied Science (GIS), PhD candidate (ANU)

Email: melissa.marshall@nd.edu.au

  • Biography

    Mel specialises in Indigenous Archaeology, particularly rock art research and working alongside community for tangible outcomes in conservation and management. She holds a Masters in Applied Science (GIS) where she investigated the intra-site spatial analysis of a rock art site. She also completed a Grad Dip in Computer Science and a Bachelor of Arts (majoring in Archaeology). She is currently completing doctoral research at the Australian National University, working with Indigenous communities and ranger groups in Northern Australia to investigate rock art conservation and management methods in response to contemporary issues.

    Mel has strong ties to the West Kimberley region, where she has worked as an archaeological and GIS consultant for more than a decade. Working with peak Indigenous bodies such as the Kimberley Aboriginal Law and Culture Centre (KALACC) and the Kimberley Land Council (KLC), as well as numerous Working on Country ranger groups and smaller Aboriginal corporations, she has supported a number of community-based research activities and projects. She continues to work extensively in western Arnhem Land and Kakadu National Park, supporting rock art research activities. She also has strong ties to the three rock art research centres around Australia at the ANU, Griffith University and UWA.

  • Teaching areas

    Currently Mel has few teaching responsibilities at UNDA, however she has assisted through participation in a Yarning Circle as part of the Aboriginal Studies unit offered on the Broome Campus. She also has lecturing experience with both ANU and Flinders University in the delivery of an undergraduate and post-graduate rock art and ethnography field school in Arnhem Land for more than a decade. She also assists with training of rangers in cultural heritage management as part of professional development opportunities.

  • Research expertise and supervision

    • Rock art research (documentation, monitoring, maintenance, conservation and management) within a Caring for Country framework
    • Indigenous Archaeology
    • Working with Indigenous communities and ranger groups in cultural heritage management activities and projects with tangible outcomes
    • Improving standards in the teaching of heritage practice, particularly related to cultural and natural resource management (CNRM)
    • Development of monitoring and evaluation frameworks on impacts to social, cultural, community and governance outcomes from Indigenous Caring for Country programs
    • Sustainability of remote Indigenous communities

    Mel currently supervises three PhD candidates and one Masters Student.

  • Books

    • Batarda Fernandes, A., M. Marshall, and I. Domingo Sanz (eds). In Press. Global Perspectives for the Conservation and Management of Open-Air Rock Art Sites. Milton Park: Routledge.
    • Injalak Arts Members, M. Marshall, S. K. May and F. Wright. 2018. Injalak Hill Rock Art. Gunbalanya: Injalak Arts.
  • Book chapters

    • Batarda Fernandes, A., M. Marshall, and I. Domingo Sanz. In Press. ‘Introduction: Open-air rock art conservation and management: A further global state of affairs. In Batarda Fernandes, A., M. Marshall, and I. Domingo Sanz (eds). Global Perspectives for the Conservation and Management of Open-Air Rock Art Sites. Milton Park: Routledge.
    • Marshall, M. and P. S. C. Tacon. In Press. ‘Monitoring and maintenance of open-air rock art sites: community collaborations from Northern Australia’. In Batarda Fernandes, A., M. Marshall, and I. Domingo Sanz (eds). Global Perspectives for the Conservation and Management of Open-Air Rock Art Sites. Milton Park: Routledge.
    • O’Loughlin, G., M. Marshall, K. May and J. Lee. In Press. ‘Trials and tribulations of artificial silicon driplines: a case study from Kakadu National Park, Australia. In Batarda Fernandes, A., M. Marshall, and I. Domingo Sanz (eds). Global Perspectives for the Conservation and Management of Open-Air Rock Art Sites. Milton Park: Routledge.
    • Marshall M. and M. Starkey 2018. ‘Hunter-Gatherer and Midrange Societies: Uluṟu’. In: Smith C. (eds) Encyclopedia of Global Archaeology. Springer, Cham.
    • May, S.K., D. Shine, D. Wright, T. Denham, P.S.C. Taçon, M. Marshall, F. Prideaux and S.P. Stephens 2017. ‘The rock art of Ingaanjalwurr, western Arnhem Land, Australia’. In B. David, P.S.C. Taçon, J.-M. Geneste and J.-J. Delannoy (eds), The archaeology of rock art in Arnhem Land. Terra Australis 47. Australian National University, Canberra.
    • May, S.K., P.S.C. Taçon, D. Wright, M. Marshall, J. Goldhahn and I. Domingo Sanz 2017. ‘The rock art of Madjedbebe (Malakunanja II)’. In B. David, P.S.C. Taçon, J.-M. Geneste and J.-J. Delannoy (eds), The archaeology of rock art in Arnhem Land. Terra Australis 47. Australian National University, Canberra.
    • Thorburn, K. and M. Marshall 2017. The Yiriman Project in the West Kimberley: An example of Justice Reinvestment? Current Initiatives Paper 5. Indigenous Justice Clearinghouse. NSW Department of Justice, NSW.
    • May, S. K, P. S. C. Tacon, D. Wright and M. Marshall 2015. ‘The Rock Art of Kakadu: past, present and future research, conservation and management’. In the proceedings of the 2010 Cultural Heritage Symposium, Department of Environment, Canberra.
    • Marshall, M and P. S. C. Tacon 2014. ‘Past & present, traditional & scientific: the conservation and management of rock art sites in Australia’. In Darvill, T. And A. P. Batarda Fernandes (eds), Open-air rock-art conservation and management: state of the art and future perspectives, pp. 214-228. Routledge, London.
    • Tacon, P. S. C and M. Marshall 2014. ‘Conservation or crisis? The future of rock art management in Australia’. In Zhang, Y. (ed.) A monograph of rock art research and protection, pp. 119-133. Zhong Guo Zang Xue Chu Ban She/ China Tibetology Publishing House, Beijing.
  • Journal articles and proceedings

    • May, S. K., M. Marshall, J. Huntley, E. Miller, I. G. Johnston, J. Goldhahn, J Hayward, A. Jalandoni, J. Lee, G. O’ Loughlin, K. May and P. S. C. Taçon. In press. ‘New insights into the rock art of Anbangbang Gallery, Kakadu National Park’. Journal of Field Archaeology. Submitted May 2019.
    • Marshall, M., L. A. Wallis and K. Golson 2019 Marnda Gardairri: Facilitation of an Indigenous Ranger Rock Art Workshop. Nulungu Insights 3. Broome: Nulungu Research Institute.
    • May, S. K., M. Marshall, I. Domingo Sanz & C. Smith 2018. Reflections on the Pedagogy of Archaeological Field Schools within Indigenous Community Archaeology Programmes in Australia. Public Archaeology 2018: 1-19.
    • Guenther, J., M. Bat, R. Boughton, A. Dwyer, M. Marshall, J. Skewes, A. Stephens, F. Williamson, S. Wooltorton. 2017. Enhancing training advantage for remote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Learners. In Transforming Education Research. Australian Association for Research in Education Refereed Conference Proceedings. Melbourne.
    • Wright, F., M. Marshall, G. Djorlom, C. Djorlom, and R. Burrunali 2016. The rock art of Injalak. Artlink, 36 (2): 66-69.
    • Shine, D., M. Marshall, D. Wright, T. Denham, P. Hiscock, G. Jacobsen and S-P. Stephens 2015. The archaeology of Bindjarran rockshelter in Manilikarr Country, Kakadu National Park, Northern Territory. Australian Archaeology 80: 104-111.
  • Conference papers

    • Marshall, M., G. O’Loughlin, K. May and J. Lee. 2018. Trials and tribulations of artificial silicon driplines in Kakadu National Park, Australia. Paper given in the ‘Conservation issues and preventive measures in open-air rock art sites’ session at the 2018 European Association of Archaeologists (EAA) Conference 5-9 September; Barcelona (Spain).
    • Marshall, M., K. May, G. O’Loughlin, J. Lee, A. Nayinggul and J. Huntley. 2018. Evaluating conservation practices with pXrf in Kakadu National Park, Australia. Paper given in the ‘Rock Art Science’ session at the 2018 International Federation of Rock Art Organisations (IFRAO) Congress, 29 August-2 September; Valcamonica/Darfo Boario Terme (Italy).
    • Marshall, M., G. Dutchie, R. Dann, J. Balme, L. Russ and D. Wolff. 2018. Two women and bush honey. Paper given in the ‘Advances in Rock Art Research from the Kimberley, North-West Australia’ session at the 2018 International Federation of Rock Art Organisations (IFRAO) Congress, 29 August-2 September; Valcamonica/Darfo Boario Terme (Italy).
    • Dann, R., M. Marshall and D. Wolff. 2017. Looking after rock art to keep country healthy and culture strong. Paper given at the ‘Innovating Rock Art Research Theory and Practice’ Workshop, 24-27 August; Salzburg (Austria).
    • Marshall, M. 2016 Decolonizing rock art conservation and management: approaches for the 21st century. Paper given at the Australian Archaeology Association (AAA) conference, 6-8 December 2016, Terrigal.
    • May, K., G. O’Loughlin, M. Marshall and J. Lee 2016 Looking after bim: two ways. Paper given at the Australian Archaeology Association (AAA) conference, 6-8 December 2016, Terrigal.
    • Dick, A., W. Barker and M. Marshall 2016 Impacts of cultural governance on management systems. Presentation at the Lowitja International Conference on Health and Wellbeing, November, Melbourne.
    • Dwyer, A., M. Marshall, S. Wooltorton and J. Guenther 2016 Indigenous Rangers – an evaluation of on-country education and training methods. Presentation, at the Lowitja International Conference on Health and Wellbeing, November, Melbourne.
    • Wooltorton, S., L. Collard, W. Barker, A. Dwyer, M. Marshall and J. Guenther 2016 Towards Sustainability: Beginning with Aboriginal Knowledges. Presentation, at the Lowitja International Conference on Health and Wellbeing, November, Melbourne.
    • Marshall, M, G. O’Loughlin, K. May and K. Whitehurst 2015 Kakadu’s Rock Art Monitoring and Maintenance Program: merging science with society. Paper given at the Australian Archaeology Association (AAA) conference, 2-4 December 2015, Fremantle.
    • Marshall, M. and P. S. C. Taçon 2015 Monitoring and maintenance of open-air rock art sites: case studies from Northern Australia. Paper given at the XIX International Rock Art Conference for the International Federation of Rock Art Organisations (IFRAO), September 1-3, Cáceres (Spain).
    • Marshall, M 2014 Rock Art Conservation and Management: Results of doctoral research into contemporary approaches. Paper given at the Australian Archaeology Association (AAA) conference, 1-3 December 2014, Cairns.
    • Carson, A, M. Marshall and M. Pigram 2014 Consulting with a difference: A community-driven heritage study. Paper given at the Australian Archaeology Association (AAA) conference, 1-3 December 2014, Cairns.
    • Marshall, M. 2014 21st Century Approaches to the Conservation of Rock Art Sites in Australia: With a focus on Kakadu National Park, western Arnhem Land and the Kimberley Region. Final oral presentation on doctoral research as part of the Research School of Humanities and the Arts (RSHA) First and Final Year Doctoral Research Conference, held 25 August 2014, Australian National University, Canberra, Australia.
    • O’Loughlin, G, M. Marshall and J. Lee 2014. Kakadu National Park: Rock Art Monitoring and Management. Presentation given at the Getty Foundation: Rock Art Conservation, Management and Tourism, Southern Africa – Australia Exchange Program, 16 August 2014, Kakadu National Park, Northern Territory, Australia.
    • Marshall, M 2013 Rock art in Northern Australia: 21st Century Perspective on site conservation & management. Presentation given at the Getty Foundation, Australian National University and the Institute of Professional Practice in Heritage and the Arts: Rock Art Conservation, Management and Tourism, Southern Africa – Australia Exchange Program, 17 August 2013, University of Witswatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa.
    • Marshall, M, S. K. May and G. Maclaren 2013. Recording Rock Art the Mirarr Way. Paper given at the Computer Applications in Archaeology (CAA) 2013 – Across Space and Time conference, 26-28 March 2013, Perth.
    • Marshall, M, L. Nulgit, A. Nandoo, R. Dann, K. Dann, D. Carlton, A. Wungundin, R. Nulgit, S. Bayley and P. Palmer. 2010. Working with the Wunggurr Rangers. Paper given at the University of Western Australia’s (UWA) Institute of Advanced Studies Workshop - Gwion Gwion Rock Art of the Kimberley: Past, Present, Future, 14-15 October 2010, Perth.
    • Marshall, M. 2010. Considering human and stylistic movement across landscapes as reflected in the rock art of the Kimberley and Arnhem Land. Paper given at the University of Western Australia’s (UWA) Institute of Advanced Studies Workshop - Gwion Gwion Rock Art of the Kimberley: Past, Present, Future, 14-15 October 2010, Perth.
  • In the media

    Kakadu National Park: Rangers train to preserve sacred rock art
    (https://www.abc.net.au/news/rural/2016-08-17/kakadu-rock-art-program/7751388)

  • Professional affiliations

    • Australian Rock Art Association (AURA) – Life Member
    • Australian Archaeological Association (AAA) – Full Member
    • Australian National Committee for Archaeology Teaching and Learning (ANCATL) – Co-Chair 2015-present
    • Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies (AIATSIS) – Full Member
    • Australian Institute for the Conservation of Cultural Materials (AICCM) – Full Member
    • World Archaeological Congress (WAC) – Full Member
    • Australian Association of Consulting Archaeologists Incorporated – Associate Member
    • International Institute of Conservation (IIC) – Full Member
    • Australia ICOMOS – Full Member
  • Community engagement

    Mel supports a number of local Aboriginal Corporations in various contexts such as Bidan Aboriginal Community as an executive member and Nyikina Incorporated as a project manager for the refurbishment of the historic Holman House as a Nyikina Cultural Centre. Additionally, she is past-president of the education lobby group, Isolated Children’s Parents Association, which supports equity in access to education for rural and remote communities.

    Married to a Nyikina man, they live on a remote Aboriginal community with their children, extended family members and a menagerie of dogs and ducks near the Mardoowarra (Fitzroy River).

  • Awards

    • 2017 Bruce Veitch Award for Excellence in Indigenous Engagement (Australian Archaeological Association)
      https://www.australianarchaeologicalassociation.com.au/awards/bruce-veitch-award/mel-marshall/
    • 2013 and 2014 – Getty Foundation, Australian National University and the Institute of Professional Practice in Heritage and the Arts: Rock Art Conservation, Management and Tourism, Southern Africa – Australia Exchange Program as a participant along with 15 other Australians, to study rock art conservation, management and cultural tours from a South African perspective.
    • 2006 – Willinggin Rock Art Project (AIATSIS research grant) to study the impacts of tourism on rock art sites along the Gibb River Road in the Kimberley region and to develop collaboratively with Aboriginal traditional owners and/or site custodians mitigative management strategies using traditional, cultural knowledge and a Western, scientific approach.
    • 2002/2 Churchill Fellowship to study innovative conservation techniques and strategies for conserving rock art sites and their surrounding landscapes.