Ms Marcelle Burns
Pre Doctoral Fellow - School of Law
Phone: +61 2 6773 2686
Marcelle Burns has worked in the field of Indigenous peoples and the law for over fifteen years, both as a legal practitioner and academic. As a Kamilaroi women and descendant of the stolen generations, she is committed to promoting greater recognition of the rights of first nations peoples. As a solicitor Marcelle has worked with both public and private legal organisations representing Indigenous peoples in criminal and native title matters. She has worked as an academic for several years where she has promoted the inclusion of Indigenous knowledges and cultural competency in legal curriculum.
BA/LLB (Hons) (SCU)
Graduate Diploma Legal Practice (COL)
Solicitor, Supreme Court of New South Wales
Member – Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies
Member – Australian Critical Race and Whiteness Studies Association
Member – National Indigenous Research and Knowledges Network
LAW101 – Law in Context
LAW 164 Indigenous Australians and Law
LAW314 Advanced Criminal Law
Indigenous peoples and international law; human rights, native title, Indigenous knowledges and cultural competency in legal education.
Current research: Marcelle is a PhD candidate at the University of South Australia, with her thesis examining the concept of society and the recognition of First Nations peoples in international and domestic law. She is also Project Leader for the Indigenous Cultural Competency for Legal Academics Program which is supported by the Australian Government Office of Learning and Teaching (Grant ID 14-3906).
2015-2018 Project Leader, Indigenous Cultural Competency for Legal Academics Program (Australian Government Office of Learning and Teaching Grant ID 14-3906).
2012-2015 Chief Investigator, National Indigenous Research and Knowledges Network (NIRAKN), (Australian Research Council Grant ID SR 120100005). http://www.nirakn.edu.au/
Irene Watson and Marcelle Burns, ‘Indigenous Knowledges: A Strategy for Indigenous Peoples Engagement in Higher Education’, in Sally Varnham, Patty Kamvounias and Joan Squelch (eds) Higher Education and the Law, (Federation Press, Leichhardt, 2015) 41-52.
Marcelle Burns, ‘Shifting global power and shifting state power: DRIP, BRICs and CANZUS’, in Rowena Maguire, Bridget Lewis and Charles Sampford (eds), Shifting Global Powers and International Law: Challenges and Opportunities, (Routledge, Milton Park, 2013), 154-170.
Peer Reviewed Articles
Marcelle Burns, ‘Towards Growing Indigenous Culturally Competency Legal Professionals in Australia’ (2013), 12 International Education Journal: Comparative Perspectives 1, 226-248.
Angela Dwyer, Bridget Lewis, Fiona McDonald, and Marcelle Burns, ‘It’s always a pleasure: Exploring productivity and pleasure in a writing group for early career academics’  Studies in Continuing Education, 1-16.
Marcelle Burns, ‘Closing the Gap between Policy and “Law”: Indigenous Homelands and a Working Future’ (2011) 27 Law in Context 2, 114-134.
Marcelle Burns, ‘Challenging the Assumptions of Positivism: An Analysis of the Concept of Society in Sampi on Behalf of the Bardi and Jawi People v Western Australia  and Bodney v Bennell ’ (2011) 4 Land, Rights, Laws: Issues of Native Title: Special Issues Paper No.7.
Marcelle Burns, ‘The unfinished business of the apology: senate rejects Stolen Generations Compensation Bill 2008 (Cth)’ (2008) 7 Indigenous Law Bulletin 7, 10-14.
Marcelle Burns, ‘Guest Editorial: World Indigenous Legal Conference 2014 – Special Forum’, Queensland University of Technology Law Review, Vol 15, n1, available at https://lr.law.qut.edu.au/issue/view/47
Marcelle Burns, ‘Book Review: Indigenous Nations’ Rights in the Balance: An Analysis of the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples’ (2014) 7 International Journal of Critical Indigenous Studies 14, available at http://www.isrn.qut.edu.au/publications/internationaljournal/volume7_number1_14.jsp
Marcelle Burns, ‘Book Review: Larissa Behrendt, Chris Cuneen and Terri Libesman, ‘Indigenous Legal Relations in Australia (Oxford University Press)’, (2009) 9 Queensland University of Technology Law and Justice Journal 1, 101-104.
Marcelle Burns, 'Indigenous Australians and a National Charter of Human Rights: Issues for Consideration' (2009) 7 Indigenous Law Bulletin 10, 2.
Selected Conference Presentations
2015, Marcelle Burns and Dr Jennifer Nielsen (SCU), Race and the Law: A Critical Journey for Students, Law and Society Association of Australia and New Zealand Conference, Flinders University, 1-3 December.
2015, Marcelle Burns, Professor Irene Watson and Dr Jennifer Nielsen, How might we better engage Indigenous knowledge in the academy and move towards putting the colonial imaginary of the savage to rest?, Law and Society Association of Australia and New Zealand Conference, Flinders University, 1-3 December.
2014What is this ‘thing’ called society?, World Indigenous Legal Conference, Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane, 24-27 June.
Society and the Recognition of Indigenous Peoples, Indigenous Knowledges Symposium: The Indigenous Subject in International Law, University of South Australia, Adelaide, 6 May.
2013Two Laws Together: The Challenge for Legal Education, Eight Annual National Indigenous Legal Conference 2013, Alice Springs, 24-26 October.
2011Discriminatory Doctrine: The Ongoing Denial of Indigenous Sovereignty in Australia, Race and Sovereignty Symposium, University of California, Los Angeles, 1-2 April.
Shifting State power: Remapping Indigenous Sovereignty, Shifting Global Power: Opportunities and Challenges for International Law, Human Rights Colloquium, Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane, 24-25 November
2010Power and Responsibility in Legal Education: Cultural Competency for Legal Professionals, Australasian Law Teachers Association Conference 2010, University of Auckland, 4-7 July.
Power to the People: A New View of Society in Native Title Law, National Native Title Conference 2010, Canberra, 1-3 June.