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Natali Pearson
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Natali Pearson
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Natali Pearson is a PhD candidate in the Museum and Heritage Studies program at the University of Sydney. She is passionate about Southeast Asia, museums and heritage, and the ocean.

Natali’s PhD research combines these interests with her professional experience at the Department of Defence and at AUSTRAC, Australia’s anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism financing regulator. Her thesis examines the ethics of underwater cultural heritage in Indonesia, focusing on the 9th century Belitung (Tang) shipwreck. She is currently working on issues relating to the illicit salvage of HMAS Perth and other wartime shipwrecks in Indonesia. This research crosses disciplinary boundaries in Southeast Asian studies, maritime archaeology, history, museology and heritage, and defence studies.

Natali holds a Master of Museum Studies from the University of Sydney (2013), a Master of Arts (Strategy and Policy) from the Australian Defence Force Academy @ University of New South Wales (2006), and a Bachelor of Arts (Asian Studies) with Honours Class One in History and Indonesian Studies from the University of New South Wales (2002).

She has worked at the Asia Society’s galleries in New York and Hong Kong, and as a consultant to the Asia Society Arts & Museum Summit. She is an alumni of the Australian Consortium for In-Country Indonesian Studies and the Asialink Leaders Program.

She is co-founder of Perspectives on the Past, a research group focused on Southeast Asian pasts ( Natali is postgraduate representative for the Asian Studies Association of Australia, and was formerly postgraduate coordinator at the Sydney Southeast Asia Centre. Her work has been featured in The Conversation, Inside Indonesia, TAASA Review, Asian Studies Review, and Eyeline.
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