78 research outputs found

    The colonial storytelling of good intent : or the inspired erasure of our Ancestors?

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    There was once a time when all spoke the same language, no matter the skin, and so there was a great peace over the lands. To help keep this peace, great meetings were held when the three sisters in the sky stood in line, and the Law-Makers – the Elders, Warriors and Healers – would gather to share their Stories and Songs. For the great meeting of this Story, it was held on the Land of the Yandelora, the home Country of Wiritjiribin the Lyrebird

    Indigenous data sovereignty in the era of big data and open data

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    Indigenous Data Sovereignty, in its proclamation of the right of Indigenous peoples to govern the collection, ownership, and application of data, recognises data as a cultural and economic asset. The impact of data is magnified by the emergence of Big Data and the associated impetus to open publicly held data (Open Data). Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, families and communities, heavily overrepresented in social disadvantage–related data will also be overrepresented in the application of these new technologies, but in a data landscape, Indigenous peoples remain largely alienated from the use of data and its utilization within the channels of policy power. Existing data infrastructure, and the emerging Open Data infrastructure, neither recognise Indigenous agency and worldviews nor consider Indigenous data needs. This is demonstrated in the absence of any consideration of Indigenous data issues in Open Data discussions and publication. Thus, while the potential benefits of this data revolution are trumpeted, our marginalised social, cultural and political location suggests we will not share equally in these benefits. This paper discusses the unforeseen (and likely unseen) consequences of the influence of Open Data and Big Data and discusses how Indigenous Data Sovereignty can mediate risks while providing pathways to collective benefits

    Gateways to occupational success : educational mobility and attainment for Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander emerging adults

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    Choices made at transition points between levels of education, particularly relating to further education, are ongoing determinants of later life attainment (Dietrich, Parker, & Salmela-Aro, 2012; Lucas, 2001). Gaining a university degree is increasingly a requirement for a “good life”. Jobs that once required a high school diploma now require a university degree, and increasingly youth are remaining in education to a postgraduate level to secure stable employment (Goldin & Katz, 2009; Piketty, 2014). Indeed, while the prospects of those with a university degree have not increased, the gap between those with and without a university degree has grown due to the considerable decline in the fortune of those with less than or only a high school level of education (Goldin & Katz, 2009; Heckman, 2006). It is thus problematic to note that considerable inequalities in educational attainment (IEA) exist, internationally, for at-risk groups in the transition to upper levels of education (e.g., immigrants, minorities, Indigenous populations, low socioeconomic groups; Lucas, 2001; OECD, 2011)

    Knowledge and power : the tale of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander data

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    The phrase 'knowledge is power' is understood to mean that if individuals and groups in a society attain knowledge through transmission of knowledge (education), they attain wisdom. This wisdom is then used to assert power (Bacon and Montagu 1857). However, as Foucault (1990) argues, knowledge power recreates itself in a circular process. Therefore, who determines what knowledge is - and who has the right to speak to that knowledge - is important. In this commentary we critique the power and knowledge structures of the economic, political, social and cultural resources that are Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander data. We then challenge the current holders of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander data and the colonial worldview from which such data are converted into knowledges. To map a new path, we offer solutions that are embedded in the concept of Indigenous Data Sovereignty (IDSov) and Indigenous Data Governance (IDGov)

    Tactics or strategies? : exploring everyday conditions to facilitate implementation of an Indigenous graduate attributes project

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    In 2017 Universities Australia (UA), the peak body representing Australian universities released its Indigenous Strategy 2017–2020. The document unites universities together in common goals for Indigenous achievement, filling a notable gap in the Australian higher education landscape. The Strategy outlines a comprehensive plan for enhanced Indigenous outcomes in critical areas of higher education including student access and success, graduate research, and community engagement. This paper focuses on the implementation of Indigenous curriculum for all Australian university graduates which is a key aspect of the Strategy. The changing Indigenous higher education landscape invites the nuanced analysis that critical examination of universities, as organisations, might elicit. Drawing on de Certeau’s notion of tactics and strategies, the paper examines the policy and cultural climate of an Australian university which supports an Indigenous Graduate Attribute curriculum project

    The NT data linkage study

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    This chapter describes the origins of the NT Data Linkage Study to investigate the early child development educational and wellbeing outcomes of all children born in the Northern Territory over the 20-year period since 1994. It briefly reviews the rapidly growing national and international literature on the use of new methods of data linkage and de-identification of unit-record data to enable whole-population studies in areas of policy and scientific research. The use of data linkage research for life course analysis is particularly helpful in documenting how children’s early-life health and social circumstances can impact their longer-term health, learning, and behavioural outcomes. The unique diversity of the Northern Territory’s geographic, cultural, linguistic and socioeconomic circumstances presents significant challenges for population-based research and the types of evidence needed to inform effective policy and services. The Northern Territory’s demographic profile differs markedly from other jurisdictions, particularly in that around 30% of the population identify as Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islanders. Special care has been taken to ensure that the study design, implementation and reporting of findings are properly inclusive and respectful of Aboriginal perspectives and that the study addresses issues of particular relevance for the NT Aboriginal community. The chapter concludes with a description of the overall study objectives, its project governance arrangements, and its community and scientific advisory processes

    Methodology

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    This chapter describes the study population and the NT administrative datasets from which data were accessed for record linkage and de-identified analysis. The steps involved in the data linkage process are then described along with technical aspects of the data linkage work carried out for the project by the SA NT DataLink data linkage authority. This includes an analysis of the completeness, consistency and quality of the data linkage and the quality assurance checks carried out to maximise linkage precision. Next, the processes involved in preparing the linked data for analysis are described. These include the project’s data management, data security, and reporting arrangements and measures to ensure the privacy and confidentiality of individuals and communities in the study. The chapter then outlines the ethics and other approval processes governing researchers’ access to the linked data for the NHMRC partnership project’s program of research. The derivations of key demographic and other key variables are defined to ensure their consistency of use in the multiple analyses required for this and planned future publications. Special attention is given to documenting the implications of how Aboriginal status is best defined for analysis of data linked from separate data sources as these can differ in their quality and completeness of recording. The chapter concludes with discussion of post-colonial Indigenous standpoints on the limitations and potential risks of statistical analysis of ‘official’ administrative data concerning Indigenous people and an outline of how this has informed the study’s statistical approach

    Modelling key drivers of school education outcomes

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    This chapter aims to unify the work of previous chapters in developing a deeper understanding of the complex interactions of children’s early life circumstances, pre-school program exposure, developmental readiness for school learning and subsequent academic outcomes. Establishing the relative contribution of these influences in shaping children’s educational progress is vital to the development and effective targeting of policy to enable population-level improvements in children’s educational outcomes

    [In Press] Shaming the silences : Indigenous Graduate Attributes and the privileging of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander voices

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    An increasing number of Australian universities are committing to Indigenous Graduate Attributes across a wide range of academic disciplines. This paper critiques not only the slow up-take of Indigenous Graduate Attributes in the last 10 years, but also how such attributes may realistically contribute to university students graduating with increased ‘awareness’, ‘knowledges’ and ‘abilities’ to work with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and communities. It is reasoned that any commitment to Indigenous Graduate Attributes must be carefully and critically monitored for the silencing effects of colonial narratives that also are prevalent throughout Australian Indigenous Studies (which is arguably the foundation of realising Indigenous Graduate Attributes). Drawing from a diversity of Indigenous standpoint theories, critical studies and research methodologies, the paper offers a critical evaluative framework through which both Indigenous Graduate Attributes and the content within the teaching and learning of Australian Indigenous Studies may be evaluated. This includes an acute awareness of imposed colonial narratives, a critical awareness of one’s own positioning, engagement with Indigenous voices, knowledge of Indigenous Research Methodologies, and more meaningful levels of Indigenous engagement through Indigenous ethics and protocols

    Aboriginal identity, world views, research and the story of the Burra'gorang

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    In recent times there has been a growing recognition that some Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and communities have been harmed and even divided by those who question their very right to identify as ‘Indigenous or not’ (Bodkin-Andrews & Carlson 2016 ; New South Wales Aboriginal Education Consultative Group [NSW AECG] 2011 ). Numerous scholars have suggested that such ‘questions’ are an unfortunate extension of the continual epistemological violence (a pressure on ways of knowing) that has sought to eradicate the diverse world views, histories, and knowledges of our peoples since colonisation (Bodkin 2013a ; Moreton-Robinson 2011 ; Nakata 2012 ), and that they result in the emergence of stereotypical accusations of ‘inauthenticity’, ‘wanna-be-Aborigines’, ‘welfare-blacks’, ‘fragmentation’ and ‘cultural absurdity’ (Behrendt 2006 ). It is the purpose of this chapter to highlight the existence of this form of epistemological and identity-based violence and explain how it threatens our communities. In addition, such violence will be challenged by focusing on the strength of diverse world views, knowledges and unique stories that exist within Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities today. We also offer you a traditional D’harawal Law Story as the central case study within this chapter. This Law Story holds valuable insights that may guide individuals and communities towards a stronger and more resilient future
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