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This handbook is primarily intended for those people active in the repatriation of Ancestral Remains to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities — in particular, those who are newly engaged in such processes. To aid this aim, it is written in a format intended to allow the user to identify and look up certain topics or issues without having to read the handbook cover to-cover each time.

It looks at repatriation of Ancestral Remains from both the museum side and the community side.

The practice of repatriation is developing rapidly. New information and improved processes develop with each meeting between claimants and collection managers, and with each repatriation project. This handbook is therefore just a starting point for repatriation practice. The suggestions it makes are a guide only, and not mandatory.

Users are encouraged to make notes regarding their own processes and to develop and edit the processes provided in this handbook to suit their particular situations. New developments and processes will inform updated future versions of this handbook, or used in new guides produced by others.1

More detailed information on many of the topics raised in the handbook may be found at the Return, Reconcile, Renew website at

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