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Desert Knowledge Cooperative Research Centre MCATSIA Meeting August 2007.

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Presentation on theme: "Desert Knowledge Cooperative Research Centre MCATSIA Meeting August 2007."— Presentation transcript:

1 Desert Knowledge Cooperative Research Centre MCATSIA Meeting August 2007

2 The DKCRC is committed to creating economic opportunities for desert people and a demonstrable difference for remote Indigenous communities, through the application of excellent research and training. Our vision Four outcomes 1.Sustainable livelihoods for desert people 2.Viable remote desert settlements 3.Thriving desert regional economies 4.Increased human and social capital of desert people

3 Desert Knowledge CRC Australia’s largest regionally based social, economic, and environmental research collaboration. Major regional nodes include Alice Springs, Port Augusta and Mt Isa. Network includes researchers in Canberra, Adelaide, Perth, Darwin, Brisbane, and Melbourne. Approximately 250 researchers across 28 partner agencies working toward developing sustainable livelihoods for desert people.

4 We work toward…. Sustainable livelihoods for desert people that are based on natural resource and service enterprise opportunities that are environmentally and socially appropriate Sustainable remote desert settlements that support the presence of desert people, particularly remote Aboriginal communities, as a result of improved governance and access to services Thriving desert regional economies that are based on desert competitive advantages, bringing together Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal communities, government and industry.

5 Where we work

6 Desert Knowledge Precinct

7 Deserts are different – and in demand 457 discrete Aboriginal communities and 72% of these have LESS THAN 50 people Feedback form coastal based partner: “The most important thing is to understand that deserts are different.” One third of respondents to a recent survey of more than 200 Victorian 4WD enthusiasts said they would rather travel in the desert than in any other environment – OnTrack TM :4WD Tourism Project.

8 Research that challenges assumptions Relative poverty does not correlate with distance from larger urban centres CommunityMedium weekly family income Distance to large urban centre (km) Davenport300-39920 Neppabunna500-599180 Koonibba300-39940

9 Mobility in and out of Town camps The survey data shows three main types of movement of people as follows: –In and out of the town camps, to communities and other housing or camping in Alice Springs –Inter-camp mobility: between town camps –Intra-camp mobility: between houses in town camps Population estimates following three surveys of Alice Springs Town Camps ABS Survey 2001 973 Estimated base population 160517652065 Estimated service population 256028203300

10 Occupancy rates 10.8—16.1 people per house in the town camps 20% of houses surveyed having 10 people or more living in the house Community facilities and ablution blocks become potential dwellings In Survey 1 there were 35 people living in the 5 community facilities surveyed Six ablution blocks were occupied during the survey.

11 Bush foods Aboriginal Livelihoods Diversifying bush products Industry opportunities for bush foods harvesters & wholesalers Participatory domestication of bush tomato Market research and industry development, including branding and policy-related matters

12 Bush foods methodology The DKCRC project team works with: –Aboriginal people and organisations –Aboriginal communities –Interdisciplinary research teams –Aboriginal trainees The team works: –across desert Australia

13 Remote telecommunications SANDS Project (Sparse Ad-hoc Networks for Deserts) –Improved communications for Aboriginal community outstations –Wireless network solutions based upon UHF radio infrastructure –Potential for a variety of network applications in desert and remote Australia.

14 21 st Century Pastoralism Project Cattle and Country Project. –Building stronger Aboriginal pastoral enterprises. –Participatory evaluation of State Govt. Aboriginal pastoral development programs across northern and central Australia. –Indigenous Pastoral Employment Review analysing Aboriginal involvement in the pastoral industry from the perspective of both employers and employees, and studying Aboriginal employment initiatives.


16 Desert Services that Work Feedback from Communities Overwhelmed by complexity of the environment they are forced to work in Feel not this is not appreciated or listened to Action research SRAs, RPAs, Local Government Reform Focus on Governance Services and Housing Services

17 DKCRC Aboriginal Education 6 Aboriginal PhD students 20% of students are Aboriginal 1 Aboriginal honours student 4 Aboriginal trainees Deadly Desert research Polly Farmer project NCVER Aboriginal case studies

18 Vocational and employment pathways 43% of desert Aboriginal population 15+ in the labour force. ½ is CDEP 12% have never attended school 4% have Certificate qualifications 170 completed apprenticeships or traineeships (2003) Most desert VET participation is in subject only & mixed field courses & at Certificate I & II levels.

19 Aboriginal IP Aboriginal IP protocol protects traditional knowledge Simple guides to Aboriginal IP Aboriginal IP workshops Aboriginal organisations partner with DKCRC because of Aboriginal IP

20 Understanding communities The DKCRC works with communities by focussing on –Livelihoods –Intergenerational research –Multidisciplinary teams –Inter-jurisdictional context –Collaborative partnering –Understanding IP in a cross-cultural context

21 Centre Partners

22 Associate Partners

23 Affiliate Partners

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