Cultural Astronomy

Astronomy is the oldest of the sciences, which played a critically important and central role in the history of science and in the Knowledge Systems of traditional cultures of the world, especially Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures of Australia. Understanding the complexity of the universe, as well as our place in the cosmos, merits research from both scientific and cultural perspectives.

Our research seeks to understand the role of astronomy in history, culture, and society, how this can be passed on through education and communication programs, and the ways our collective astronomical heritage can be safeguarded for future generations. Our work highlights myriad ways that observations of the positions and properties of celestial objects are used for cultural practices, such as seasonal calendars, predicting time, forecasting weather, informing social structure, and serving as a memory space. We also research the impacts of light pollution and satellites, pedagogies for science education, and how psychology and perception guides our views of the cosmos.

You can explore our various research areas and programs, see what study and degree options are available, and learn about the people working in this space.