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Research and Business Development Director

Job No: 94348
Location: Brisbane, Cairns, Melbourne, Perth, Canberra or Sydney

  • Federal Court Manager Level 2 (EL 2)
  • $110,087 - $129,018 per annum, plus superannuation
  • Non-ongoing, Full-time (12 months)
  • This position may be based in either Brisbane, Cairns, Melbourne, Perth, Canberra, or Sydney.

Overview of Agency

From 1 July 2016, the Courts Administration Legislation Amendment Act 2016 merged the corporate services of the Family Court of Australia and the Federal Circuit Court of Australia with the Federal Court of Australia into a single administrative entity – the Federal Court of Australia. The entity also includes the National Native Title Tribunal. 

The Act makes provision for the Courts to share Corporate Services, including Human Resources, Information Technology, Finance, as well as other functions.

Under the arrangement, each Court remains independent to fulfil its statutory obligations. Heads of Jurisdiction continue to be responsible for managing the Administrative Affairs of their respective Courts (excluding Corporate Services, which lies within the exclusive ambit of the Federal Court), with assistance from a respective Chief Executive Officer and Principal Registrar. 

All staff of the Courts are employed by the Federal Court of Australia under the Public Service Act 1999, regardless for which Court or Tribunal they work or to which provide services.

Organisational Context

The National Native Title Tribunal (NNTT) is an authority established by the Native Title Act 1993 (Cth) (the Act) which has offices in four Australian States.

The Tribunal comprises a President and members, who are appointed by the Governor-General under the Act to make decisions, conduct inquiries, reviews and mediations, and assist various parties with native title applications, and Indigenous Land Use Agreements.

The Tribunal is supported by the Native Title Registrar (Registrar), who together with the President and members, have separate and specific functions and responsibilities to perform under the Act. Staff assisting the Tribunal and the Registrar are employed by the Federal Court of Australia.

Position Overview

Reporting to the Deputy Registrar, the position provides high-level research services and advice to the President, members and Registrar and to senior staff in the discharge of their functions and powers under the Act.

The Research and Development Director is responsible for liaising with external clients, undertaking research and providing advice to the NNTT Board of Management on service delivery opportunities. 

The position will be responsible for leading in the identification, development and delivery of NNTT support to clients and overseeing special projects as identified by the President, Registrar or Deputy Registrar.

The position will also be responsible for overseeing native title research and managing the NNTT’s research resources.

The position is actively engaged in the strategic management of the NNTT and is a member of the National Director’s Group.

Major Activities

  • Prepare research reports to support the President, Registrar and members as required.
  • Develop resources to support the provision of research and assistance services to the NNTT.
  • Maintain an awareness of developments in native title and the potential implications for the NNTT.
  • Liaise with NNTT clients to identify areas where the NNTT could meaningfully contribute to client needs.
  • Manage special projects as identified, coordinating internal resources and being the point of contact within the NNTT.
  • Manage and oversee the professional development of the Research and Development team.
  • Actively participate in NNTT strategic planning activities and projects.
  • Actively contribute to the development of innovative practice and procedure to effect more efficient disposition of NNTT matters.
  • Institute appropriate forums to contribute to the professional development of NNTT staff.
  • Contribute to the internal and external dissemination of information about developments in native title.
  • Maintain ongoing liaison with President and members in relation to key issues in NNTT practice.
  • Facilitate the dissemination of relevant information to President, members, Registrar, Deputy Registrar and NNTT Board.

Competencies & Attributes

This position requires the following competencies and professional attributes:

  1. Possess and demonstrate an understanding of the issues affecting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
  2. Possess and demonstrate an ability to communicate sensitively with and demonstrate cultural understanding of, and respect for, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
  3. Possess an ability to produce high quality and timely written advice and reports under pressure and with a short lead time.
  4. Possess an ability to consolidate and evaluate and summarise large amounts of complex information quickly and concisely.
  5. Demonstrated high level strategic and analytical skills.
  6. Demonstrated experience in project management.
  7. Possess an ability to confidently and persuasively communicate, consult and proactively network.
  8. Possess extensive knowledge of the native title system, stakeholders and native title research methodologies and materials.
  9. Possess excellent social research skills and an understanding of academic research standards with the ability to write for multiple audiences. 
  10. Competence in word processing, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook.

Formal Qualifications

  • Post-graduate qualifications in a relevant social science discipline.

Selection Criteria

  1. Possessing and demonstrating an understanding of the issues affecting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
  2. Possessing and demonstrating an ability to communicate sensitively with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
  3. Demonstrated knowledge of native title, the Native Title Act 1993 (Cth), Tribunal and Native Title Registrar’s functions or the ability to acquire in a timely manner.
  4. Demonstrated high-level experience in native title research and research programme management.
  5. Demonstrated ability to cultivate strong productive working relationships and communicate with influence, when representing an organisation at state, regional or other high-level forums and the ability to communicate the Tribunal’s vision to staff at a local level.
  1. Demonstrated professionalism, proven ability to act impartially with external clients and/or parties, while operating within the boundaries of organisational processes and constraints which have an impact on an organisation’s political and community environment.


Employment with the Court is subject to the conditions prescribed in the Public Service Act 1999, and the following:

  • Australian citizenship – the successful applicant must hold Australian citizenship;
  • Security and character clearance – the successful applicant must satisfy a Police Records Check, and may also be required to complete security clearances during the course of their employment;
  • Health clearance – the successful applicant may be required to complete a health declaration or attend a medical assessment to confirm their fitness for duty.

Interested candidates who have received a redundancy benefit from an APS agency are welcome to apply, but note that they cannot be engaged until their redundancy benefit period has expired.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander job seekers and people with disabilities are encouraged to apply.

How to Apply

To apply for this position please click on the “apply now” button on the Federal Court website (

To be considered you will need to upload a comprehensive statement of claims against the selection criteria (4 page maximum) detailing how your experience and skills relate to the position description and selection criteria and attach an up to date resume by 11:55PM on 28 November 2017.

For more information contact Debbie Fletcher, NNTT Deputy Registrar, by email or phone 1800 640 501 or. 089 425 1088.

Indigenous Contact Officer Tracey Jefferies.

Contact details:   by email  or phone 1800 640 501 or 07 3307 5000.




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