Established in 1964 the Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies (AIATSIS) is an institute that focuses on the collection, research, and publishing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait islander cultures, traditions, languages, and stories. Commemorating fifty years since the institutes founding, the Royal Australian Mint has produced this fifty cent piece. The reverse features a depiction of the AIATSIS logo along with the caption "AIATSIS 1964 - 2014" and the legend "AUSTRALIAN INSTITUTE OF ABORIGINAL AND TORRES STRAIT ISLANDER STUDIES."
AIATSIS was initially established as the Australian Institute of Aboriginal Studies (AIAS) in 1964 by an Act of Parliament. The initial council consisted of twenty-two academic members with the Foundation Principal being chosen as anthropologist and archaeologist Fred McCarthy. In 1989 the institute was renamed to included Torres Strait Islanders and the council was reduced to nine members. Today this council is made up predominately of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders. The logo of AIATSIS is a depiction of the boomerang totem used by the Gu:na:ni (Kunjen) people located in the Mitchel River region in Northern Queensland. (Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies, 2017)
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