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Survey Analysis for Indigenous Policy in Australia


Shafiq Ahmad is currently an Assistant Professor in the School of Business at Al Yamamah University in Saudi Arabia. At the time of writing the paper presented at the conference, he worked in the Performance and Evaluation Branch, Indigenous Coordination Group, in the Australian Government Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs (FaHCSIA).

Jon Altman is a research professor at the Centre for Aboriginal Economic Policy Research (CAEPR), The Australian National University (ANU), where he was foundation Director from 1990 to 2010. His disciplinary background is in economics and anthropology, although in recent years he has veered to political ecology and critical anthropology of development; research interests currently focus on economic hybridity, property rights and appropriate development in remote regions and a long standing interest in the national Indigenous survey instrument extending back over 20 years.

Martin Bell is Professor of Geography and Director of the Queensland Centre for Population Research at University of Queensland. His scholarly interests lie mainly in the fields of population mobility and internal migration, and in developing models to make demographic projections at the regional and local level. Recent contributions include the development and application of new measures to make cross-national comparisons of mobility.

Nicholas Biddle is a Fellow at CAEPR, ANU. He has a Bachelor of Economics (Hons) from University of Sydney and a Master of Education from Monash University. He has a PhD in Public Policy from ANU, where he wrote his thesis on the benefits of and participation in education of Indigenous Australians. Nicholas is currently working on the CAEPR Indigenous population project, funded by the Commonwealth and State/Territory Governments. He is also working on a Research Fellowship for the National Centre for Vocational Education Research and previously worked in the Methodology Division of the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

Christina Birdsall-Jones’ research focus is on issues connected with Indigenous housing, and since joining the John Curtin Institute of Public Policy in 2007 she has conducted several major research projects funded by the Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute. These projects concern Indigenous housing histories, homelessness, home ownership, housing impacts of the mining boom on Indigenous communities and Indigenous mobility. She has published in the fields of anthropology, Indigenous housing, native title and Indigenous tourism. Christina has a BA anthropology from University of Florida Gainesborough, and obtained her MA and PhD at the Department of Anthropology, University of Western Australia. She is currently working on FaHCSIA funded research into Aborginal homelessness and an Indigenous Multi-Year Project on Aboriginal Life Worlds and the Welfare Concept of Conditionality.

Geoff Buchanan is a PhD candidate in anthropology at CAEPR, ANU. He began work as a researcher at CAEPR in 2004 having an undergraduate background in environmental policy and economics as well as Indigenous Australian studies. Geoff has worked on a number of CAEPR research projects relating to the environmental, social and economic significance of the Indigenous estate, caring for country, and customary harvest. His PhD explores the work of Aboriginal rangers in remote Australia.

Timothy Cameron is a Research Officer at CAEPR, ANU. He has a First Class Honours degree in economics and has worked on a number of projects related to the economics of Indigenous education.

Tanya Chikritzhs is Professor and head of the Alcohol Policy Research team at the National Drug Research Institute, Curtin University and NHMRC Fellow. She has academic qualifications in epidemiology, biostatistics and psychology, and some 15 years of experience in alcohol research. Tanya is an expert in the field of alcohol epidemiology and alcohol policy and has received numerous national awards including the 2012 Commonwealth Health Ministers Award for Excellence in Health and Medical Research.

Andrew Clarke is a PhD candidate in Sociology at the School of Social Science at University of Queensland. Prior to his candidature, Andrew worked as a research assistant at the Institute for Social Science Research, where, amongst other things, he worked on projects examining the quantitative determinates of crowding in indigenous households and the spatial variations in indigenous homelessness.

Vanessa Corunna is an Aboriginal researcher based at Curtin University of Technology. She holds a BA from University of Western Australia with a double major in anthropology and archaeology. She also holds a Diploma of Applied Science in Indigenous Community Management from Curtin University of Technology. Prior to gaining work as a researcher in both cultural heritage and housing projects, Vanessa worked in managerial positions in various Aboriginal agencies and services in Western Australia including in an Aboriginal Community School and a Community Centre.

Alfred Michael Dockery is Associate Professor in Economics at Curtin University and Director of the Centre for Labour Market Research. Mike’s principal expertise is in the analysis of applied labour market and social issues. His current research focuses upon the effects of labour market experiences on happiness; Indigenous socioeconomic outcomes; the school-to-work transition; and he leads the Population Mobility and Labour Markets project for the CRC for Remote Economic Participation.

Ann Evans is a Fellow in the Australian Demographic and Social Research Institute at ANU. Ann is a family demographer with an interest in comparative research of family dynamics and change. This comparative work explores the impact of social, cultural and welfare settings on family formation behaviours. She is currently conducting research on cohabitation, relationship formation and dissolution, fertility and contraception, young motherhood and transition to adulthood.

Carroll Go-Sam is a researcher and centre manager of the Aboriginal Environments Research Centre in the School of Architecture, at University of Queensland. She is a descendant of the Dyirrbal, Gumbilbarra people of the upper Tully and upper Herbert Rivers in far north Queensland. On completing her Bachelor of Architecture degree in 1997 at University of Queensland, Carroll was one of the few female Indigenous graduates in architecture in Queensland. Her current research interests include Indigenous housing research particularly, modelling crowding and housing procurement in Aboriginal Australia. Other architectural topics in addition to housing include Indigenous Identity constructs in architecture and its role in place-making and nation building

Matthew Gray is Professor of Indigenous Public Policy at CAEPR, Research Director of the College of Arts and Social Sciences and a Public Policy Fellow of ANU. He was previously Deputy Director of the Australian Institute of Family Studies (AIFS) and Executive Project Manager of the Longitudinal Study of Australian Children. Matthew has undertaken research on a wide range of economic and social policy issues.

Kelly Greenop is a lecturer and researcher in the School of Architecture, University of Queensland. Kelly is nearing completion of her PhD at the Aboriginal Environments Research Centre within the School of Architecture at University of Queensland. Her research examines the relationship between Indigenous people and place in urban Brisbane through a case study of Inala, an Indigenous ‘centre’ in Brisbane. She has undertaken fieldwork with Indigenous people in urban areas of south east Queensland since 2005, and more recently worked on projects examining crowding and homelessness in remote Indigenous communities

William Harvey-Jones graduated from University of Queensland with a Master of Architecture in 2011, and wrote his dissertation on the relationship between mythic landscapes and identities in Australian cultures. He was a Summer Scholar in the Aboriginal Environments Research Centre 2012–11 during which he contributed to the analysis of crowding in this volume.

Boyd Hunter is Senior Fellow at CAEPR, ANU, where he specialises in labour market analysis, social economics and poverty research. He has long term involvement on the Steering Committee for the Longitudinal Study of Indigenous Children (FaHCSIA), the Scientific Reference Group for the National Indigenous (Closing the Gaps) Clearinghouse (Australian Institute of Health and Welfare/AIFS), and has been the Managing Editor of the Australian Journal of Labour Economics since 2008.

Kim Johnstone is Senior Demographer at the New South Wales Department of Planning and Infrastructure. At the time of writing her paper she was completing her PhD at the Australian Demographic and Social Research Institute, ANU. Her research focused on contemporary Indigenous fertility in the Northern Territory. Kim has over 17 years’ experience working in Australia and New Zealand, using knowledge of population dynamics to inform evidence-based policy development and implementation

Wenbin Liang is a Research Fellow and Statistician at the National Drug Research Institute, Curtin University, in Western Australia. Wenbin has research expertise in the field of medicine, healthcare, epidemiology and biostatistics.

Paul Memmott is an anthropologist and architect and is Director of the Aboriginal Environments Research Centre at University of Queensland. Paul was the principal of a research consultancy practice in Aboriginal projects during 1980 to 2008, which provided specialised services to Aboriginal organisations and government departments throughout Australia. He is now a full-time professor within the Institute for Social Science Research and the School of Architecture at University of Queensland. Paul’s current research addresses social problems of housing design, crowding, homelessness and family violence in both metropolitan and remote parts of Indigenous Australia.

Carrington Shepherd is a senior analyst at the Telethon Institute for Child Health Research in Perth and is undertaking a PhD financially supported by a Sidney Myer Health Scholarship. He is focusing on the wellbeing of Indigenous Australians, and the use of population-level datasets to examine the social determinants of child and youth health. His research interests include Indigenous identification in linked administrative datasets, and the use of these data to investigate intergenerational determinants of health. Carrington was previously the manager of the National Children and Youth Statistics Unit at ABS.

Qasim Shah is a statistician working in the Performance and Evaluation Branch, Indigenous Coordination Group of FaHCSIA. He has previously worked at ABS and AIHW.

Lucy Snowball is a Senior Research Officer at the New South Wales Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research. Her recent work includes research into racial bias in sentencing, bail decisions and juvenile diversion; social and economic factors underpinning Indigenous contact with the justice system; and factors determining the granting of police bail for juveniles. Lucy previously worked in the Methodology Division of ABS. Her current research interests include public confidence in the criminal justice system and screening tools for interventions to reduce juvenile reoffending.

John Taylor is Professor and Director of CAEPR, ANU. For the past 25 years he has conducted research on demographic, social and economic change among Indigenous Australians and has published widely on these issues in Australian and international books and journals. He is a member of the ABS Advisory Group on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Statistics, the Expert Group on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Statistics and a Board member of the Closing the Gap Clearinghouse. He has been prominent in demonstrating the application of demographic analysis to Indigenous policy.

Prem Thapa directs the Indigenous Data Analyses and Research section in the Performance and Evaluation Branch, Indigenous Coordination Group of FaHCSIA. Prem previously worked in the Economic Research Unit in the Australian Government Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations and also in the Economics Program of the Research School of Social Sciences at ANU. His research has focused mainly on modelling welfare dependence and transitions using Australian administrative data and on labour market dynamics, analysing employment transitions and wage growth using the Living in Australia (HILDA) panel survey.

Don Weatherburn is Director of the New South Wales Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research in Sydney. He was awarded a Public Service Medal in 1998, appointed an Adjunct Professor in the School of Social Science and Policy at University of New South Wales in 2005, and made a fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences in Australia in 2006. His current research interests include the effectiveness of measures to reduce Indigenous imprisonment, the specific deterrent effect of community-based penalties and the effect of personal and financial stress on violence against women.

Mark Western is Director of the Institute for Social Science Research at University of Queensland. He is a sociologist working on topics including: economic and social mobility and the reproduction of privilege and disadvantage; social networks and labour market outcomes; the life pathways of young people; household and individual preparedness for disasters. Mark is a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences in Australia, a Chief Investigator on the ARC Centre of Excellence in Policing and Security, and has led and participated in a number of commissioned studies for the Australian Government in areas such as health and education. In 2012 he is Chair of the Research Evaluation Committee for the Education and Human Society Disciplinary Cluster for the Excellence in Research for Australia (ERA) initiative.

Stephen R. Zubrick is Winthrop Professor of Child Health at University of Western Australia and heads the Division of Population Science at the Telethon Institute for Child Heath Research. He has led studies of children’s health, education and wellbeing including the Western Australia Child Health Survey and the Longitudinal Study of Australian Children. He received the Children and Young People Lifetime Achievement Award at the Western Australia Citizen of the Year Awards in June 2011.

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