Researching and collecting data

Nominate research methods

In order to prevent instances like the Cronulla riots from occurring, you will need to find out its causes. Even if you decide that racism may have been a factor in the riots, you will need to understand what may have caused this ill-feeling to occur. In other words, racism can lead to certain behaviours, but it may have causes, too. Once you discover some of its causes, you may be able to prevent it from occurring.

To find out the cases of racism, you will need to research a range of sources. Your initial sources will lead you to additional sources, as you investigate their claims. For example, one possible avenue for research in explaining racism is to investigate the social factors that may cause it. To do this, you need to examine population statistics, to see whether these factors were prevalent in events at Cronulla Beach.

Your research methods will therefore include an examination of the research on racism, and census data analysis.

Identify information sources

You will find the Australian Human Rights Commission website, as well as the Racism No Way website, informative sites to visit. Once you have settled on the causes of racism, you may find the Australian Bureau of Statistics website to be of further assistance. You may also need maps to locate Cronulla geographically. Brainstorm your list of possible resources with others in your class/group.

Collect data and information

Start with the sources below, which range from speeches by the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice Commissioner to newspaper articles and maps, and then add to them as you delve further into the subject. Remember to organise your collection!

1. Where is Cronulla?

Use to find Cronulla on the map of Sydney. You can do that by entering ‘Cronulla’ and choosing ‘New South Wales’ in the search engine on the website. Use the zoom in and zoom out bar to establish its location in relation to Sydney.

Google Earth

This site will give you street level, three-dimensional, satellite images of the area you select.

2. What are the causes of racism?

The following sources explain some of the forms and causes of racism.

Causes of racism

Cronulla: could it happen here? (AHRC)

Understanding racism (Racism No Way)

The Cronulla riots

'Mob violence envelops Cronulla' (Sydney Morning Herald)

'Racist furore as mobs riot' (The Age)

Cronulla and racism (Sydney Morning Herald)

After the riots – Sydney’s map of racism

Population data

Australian Bureau of Statistics Census Data by Location Map

 (You will need to download free Adobe SVG software to view the maps and data.)

Introduction | Background | Researching | Analyzing | Reporting | Resources