Champion for Indigenous Australians wins prestigious award

Flinders’ Professor Claire Smith has been honoured with the 2018 Lucy Mair Medal by the Royal Anthropological Institute of Great Britain and Ireland (RAI). The esteemed accolade is awarded annually in recognition of the outstanding use of anthropological skills to help others, particularly in the context of human dignity.

The RAI is the world’s longest-established scholarly association dedicated to furthering anthropology in its most inclusive sense.  In making the announcement, its council members expressed their appreciation of Professor Smith’s long record of scholarly achievement and the dedication she has shown to Australia’s Indigenous people.

Professor Smith, a Professor of Archaeology, has worked with Australian Aboriginal people from a number of communities for many years and is passionate about highlighting the sophistication of their cultures, and expanding awareness of their accomplishments among the broader community.

Her achievements include raising over $3.8 million in funding for humanities research projects and producing 10 books and more than 150 publications. She is editor of the 11-volume Encyclopedia of Global Archaeology, which has had more than 287,000 downloads.

The Lucy Mair Medal comes with a prize of £1000 (UK) and adds to Professor Smith’s already impressive string of medals, awards and honours – including twice-elected President of the World Archaeological Congress.

Professor Smith will receive her medal at a ceremony to be held at the British Museum in London, on 4 October 2018.

Australia’s inaugural Anthropology Day will be celebrated this week on Thursday, 13 September 2018.

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