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The Australian National University

William Sanders

Document: Research Monograph

The engagement of Indigenous Australians in economic activity is a matter of long-standing public concern and debate. Jon Altman has been intellectually engaged with Indigenous economic activity for almost 40 years, most prominently through his elaboration of the concept of the hybrid economy, and most recently through his sustained and trenchant critique of policy.

Document: CAEPR Seminar

This seminar will revisit my triangular conceptual framework for Australian Indigenous policy developed a decade ago. That framework identified three competing principles of equality, choice and guardianship. Equality was identified as the dominant principle at the top and centre of the policy space, but with three interpretations: individual legal equality, equality of opportunity and socio-economic equality.

Document: CAEPR Seminar

Graphing simple data for the ten elections for the Northern Territory Legislative Assembly since 1983, we can see that the 2016 election occupies an extreme position.  The winning party enjoyed a greater seat/vote advantage and the losing party a greater seat/vote disadvantage than in any of the previous nine elections. By exploring a proportionality profile graphic for these ten elections, this seminar will expand on these observations and also show that:

Document: Topical Issue


The Community Development Programme (CDP) is a remote-area Work for the Dole scheme that principally affects Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. The program is billed by  the government as 'helping people find work, and allowing them to contribute to their communities and gain skills while looking for work.' But there is mounting evidence that CDP is creating significant hardship for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and communities, leading to increasing pressure for the scheme to be scrapped or radically overhauled.

Document: Working Paper

In July 2013, a new Australian Government-funded labour market  program was implemented across remote Australia: the Remote Jobs and Communities Program (RJCP). The program (now renamed and restructured as the Community Development Programme - CDP) had a case load of around 36 000 people, of whom about 85% were Indigenous. Most people in the program were required to participate in activities as a condition of receiving income support and were subject to the Job Seeker Compliance Framework, which sets out financial penalties and safeguards for those who fail to comply.

Document: CAEPR Seminar

The Remote Jobs and Communities Program (RJCP) began in July 2013 as a new single-provider, integrated approach to Commonwealth-funded employment and community participation services in remote areas. While not an Indigenous-specific program, the clientele of RJCP was anticipated to be predominantly Indigenous and Indigenous organisations were encouraged to apply for provider contracts, if not solely then in partnership with other organisations.

Document: Working Paper

On 1 July 2013, a new labour market and community participation program-the Remote Jobs and Communities Program (RJCP)-started operating across remote Australia. It replaced several other programs, most importantly Job Services Australia (JSA) and the Community Development Employment Projects (CDEP) scheme. JSA has in recent years been Australia's principal 'mainstream' labour market program in which all unemployment payment recipients in Australia who are able to work are expected to participate.

Document: CAEPR Seminar

The ANUPoll on Indigenous issues was conducted in September/October 2014 using a representative, Australia-wide sample of 1201 respondents. Interviewees were variously asked to rank the importance of Indigenous issues, to agree or disagree with statements about the circumstances of Indigenous people and recent policy approaches, and to indicate support or opposition to various forms of Indigenous recognition, including in the Constitution.

Document: Discussion Paper

The competing principles framework for analysing Australian Indigenous affairs is revisited, starting with Rowse on 'the Coombs experiment'. Rowse rehabilitates this term from pejorative critics, arguing that all government policy in Indigenous affairs is experimental. The task becomes one of characterising changing patterns of government experiment since the Commonwealth became involved in Indigenous affairs on a national scale after the 1967 constitutional alteration referendum. This paper develops a two-phase characterisation, changing from the milennium.

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