Scientific research, including archaeological and anthropological research, requires a permit under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act).
You may need several permits depending on the nature and type of research you wish to conduct.
Working with traditional owners
Kakadu is home to over 200 Bininj/Mungguy, who live right across the park. Researchers need to be respectful of where and how they operate when conducting their research.
Involving Bininj/Mungguy in your research, particularly through employment and training opportunities, is a priority for the park. As part of your permit conditions you need to follow the Guidelines for collaboration between researchers and Bininj/Mungguy (Aboriginal people) of Kakadu National Park (PDF - 168.12 KB) .
Apply well in advance
Kakadu National Park receives a large number of permit applications and needs to consult traditional owners on all proposed research.
Please submit your application by the dates set out below, noting that you need to allow at least three months for your permit to be issued. Applications received outside of these dates will be considered in the following round.
|Submit application by:||For research commencing on or after:|
|1 February||1 May|
|1 May||1 August|
|1 August||1 November|
|1 November||1 February|
If you have an existing research permit and need more time to complete the research, you will need to apply for another permit at least four weeks before your existing one expires.
Determining which permits you need
Answer the five questions below to determine which permits you need to conduct your research in Kakadu National Park.
If you answer Yes to questions 1 or 2, you can apply for the permits via Parks Australia Online Services.
If you answer Yes to any of questions 3, 4 or 5, you will need to follow the links below to apply for these permits separately.
1. Do you intend to undertake scientific research inside Kakadu National Park?
If Yes, you will need a permit issued under Part 12 of the EPBC Regulations and an approval for sections 354 and 354A of the EPBC Act. Please apply for these through Parks Australia Online Services.
2. Does your research involve collecting biological resources from Kakadu National Park?
If Yes, you will need a permit issued under Part 8A of the EPBC Regulations. You do not need to complete a separate application if you are applying through Parks Australia Online Services.
If you are collecting samples for commercial purposes, you will also need to enter into a benefit sharing agreement.
For more information please see accessing biological resources.
3. Does your research involve cetaceans or killing, injuring, taking, trading, keeping or moving a member of a listed threatened, migratory or marine species or an ecological community?
If Yes, you may need to apply for a separate permit under Part 13 of the EPBC Act.
You do not need this permit if either of the following applies:
- The action is done inside Kakadu National Park and is authorised under a management plan for the park (please email Kakadu.email@example.com to see if this applies to your research).
- The species you will impact is listed as threatened under the EPBC Act and the action is undertaken in accordance with a recovery plan that is in force (please email EPBC.firstname.lastname@example.org to see if this applies to your research).
You can also search for a listed species on the Species Profile and Threats Database.
4. Do you intend to import or export wildlife?
If Yes, you will need to apply for a separate permit under Part 13A of the EPBC Act.
For more information or to apply for a permit, please go to Research.
5. Will your research be done in the Northern Territory but outside Kakadu National Park?
If Yes, please contact the Northern Territory Government to see what permits you may need under Northern Territory law. Visit Wildlife Permits or call the Parks and Wildlife Commission on +61 (0)8 8999 4795.