NintiNews - November 2011
|Ninti One News||CRC-REP News||Camel News|
|SAND scales up||People on the move||Camel reports surge|
|Accolade for ACRIS||Project spotlight|
|Tourism workshop||New publications|
|Crossing cultures||Tourist dreams||Remote diary|
Ninti One’s answer to the problems of remote communication, SAND, is seeking funds to undergo major field testing in 2012. This is particularly timely, as we estimate that over 100,000 mostly Aboriginal people living in and around 1200 remote communities and stations will still be beyond the reach of the full services provided by the National Broadband Network.
SAND is the Spare Ad-hoc Network for the Desert. It is a low-cost, easy-to-maintain way of providing voice and internet services to very remote Australia. We have so far invested $1.5m in R&D of this excellent communication solution and are now planning major trials to establish its robustness, reliability, data transfer performance and user interactions.
The plan calls for the testing of the technology across both an Aboriginal community and a pastoral station in remote Australia. This will enable the assessment of the social and economic impact of the technology as well as providing data on the reliability and robustness of the network infrastructure. Our Aboriginal Community Researchers will be closely involved in helping with the trials and gathering user feedback. back to top
I’m delighted to say that this year’s NT Desert Knowledge Research Award was presented to Dr Gary Bastin of the Australian Collaborative Rangelands Information System (ACRIS).
ACRIS is a nationwide scientific collaboration that documents changes in the rangelands over a vast sweep of landscapes and reports regularly on what it finds. In particular, it seeks to separate and understand the effects of natural changes, climate change and other human activity.
Gary has been co-ordinating ACRIS development since 2001 and repeatedly breaking new ground in bringing a scientific perspective to the complex task of measuring landscape change across varying ecologies, datasets and jurisdictions. He was also the driver behind its celebrated 2008 report Taking the Pulse, the first real health report on the state of the Australian rangelands. He has also been instrumental in translating Australian learnings and expertise to the global task of monitoring the health of the world’s rangelands – which make up almost 40% of the planet’s land surface. Well done, Gary!
Gary would like to acknowledge Dr Margaret Friedel for nominating ACRIS for the award and the ACRIS Management Committee who have contributed to making ACRIS the success it is.
Ninti One subcontracts CSIRO, one of our partners, to coordinate the information gathering for this project. back to top
|Professor Fay Rola-Rubzen|
A new study of Aboriginal businesses in remote Australia by Associate Professor Fay Rola-Rubzen finds Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal entrepreneurs are remarkably similar in terms of their motivations, challenges and business goals. However, it highlights policy improvements that could further assist Aboriginal enterprises achieve success, including:
- better support mechanisms: simplified tax reporting and business hubs
- access to long-term mentors who understand Indigenous businesses
- training in key areas of management, business planning and financial management
- support for increasing business profile, market research, website development, and interstate and export product promotion
- access to adequate broadband and mobile services for businesses in desert and remote areas to reduce geographical barriers in accessing markets.
|Leslee Holmes, winner of the survey draw|
Fay comments, “The factors identified above provide a guide to the policy directions required to support Indigenous businesses in reaching their potential.” A copy of her report is at: http://www.nintione.com.au/resource/NintiOneReport_AnatomyoftheAustralianEntrepreneur.pdf
Survey respondents were invited to take part in a draw to win a laptop and multi-function printer package. The lucky winner was Leslee Holmes (Manager/Owner) of Pinnacles Caravan Park and Seashells Beachside Café, Cervantes WA.
The research was assisted by industry partner, Indigenous Business Australia, who provided funding and significant in-kind support to the project. back to top
Ninti One staff recently had another enlightening cross-cultural experience at Iga Warta in the Northern Flinders Ranges. Population and Mobility research leader Mike Dockery was among those who took part. “We had a lengthy session on Aboriginal history, as well as learning much about cultural and traditional rules, kinship structure, rights and obligations,” he says. “I felt it contributes to a far better understanding and awareness of the issues, especially if you are going to be working with Aboriginal communities. It’s going to be a big help with our future research, to understand the sensitivities and interlinkages that apply, and how much people have been affected by past policies.”
Mike, who took along his son Matthew, 12, added that although he was aware of what Aboriginal people had faced at the hands of Australian authorities in recent generations, it was nevertheless “pretty confronting to learn of the personal experiences, at first hand. Matthew was deeply impressed too – he said he learned more in our day and a half at Iga Warta than from a week or more in school.” back to top
Outside of his Iga Warta professional development, Population and Mobility Research leader Professor Mike Dockery has been hard at work developing his project proposal.
“Our aim is to get a much better handle on the movement of people in Remote Australia, with the aim of both improving service delivery and increasing labour market access for them and for the companies who employ them,” he explains. “If you understand the patterns of movement and the reasons for them, you will know much more about where and when to deliver services, or when labour will be available.”
The traditional mobility of remote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians, which is a natural response to living in remote and desert regions, has tended to be viewed as problematic from the viewpoint of mainstream models of service delivery or employment. “We think if we can better understand the reasons for mobility and its patterns, we can overcome this perception – and help deliver better services and jobs to remote people. We think mobility should be accommodated – not suppressed,” he says.
Based on a wide sample of communities from central Australia, the research aims to build up a visual computer model of population flows that can forecast trends and be used to plan better services and work opportunities.
“Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander mobility must be understood in the context of past polices and contemporary policies and practices, along with enduring and evolving aspirations. Kinship ties, cultural obligations and connections to land are key drivers of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander temporary mobility, and are critical to their wellbeing. In our research we will be making every effort to ensure their views and perspectives are included and heeded. That way service delivery and employment opportunities will work better from everyone’s perspective,” Mike says.
Nine of CRC-REP’s key research projects came under the microscope at a two-day meeting of managers and research leaders in Adelaide in early November, with a view to developing, reviewing and fine-tuning the proposals.
Despite the inconvenience of disrupted air travel, researchers and managers were able to change travel arrangements and still ‘attend’ from across Australia via e-hookup. General Manager Research, Evaluation and Impact, Dr Kevin Williams, says it quickly became apparent what a great strength the highly multidisciplinary character of the CRC’s research team will prove. “The range of perspectives and expertise brought to bear on all projects led to stronger proposals and better thinking on how we tackle some pretty big research challenges. It was also clear there are great synergies between different projects, which we can take advantage of as the program develops and which will deliver much more cohesive outcomes than a collection of separate projects.”
“Overall, it was a highly constructive meeting – inspiring even, with excellent proposals. It was clear to everyone our research portfolio is going to have significant impact, and one of the important issues will be how we measure that.” back to top
CRC-REP held a highly successful tourism workshop with representatives of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander tourism enterprises at Iga Warta in the Flinders Ranges recently. The main focus was on gathering industry perspectives and needs, ranging from SME to industry-wide, to develop the CRC’s research priorities and key research questions. These will be reported in detail in a future NintiNews. back to top
The sixth Australian Indigenous Tourism Conference was held from September 20–23, 2011, at the Burswood Entertainment Complex in Perth. The event was hosted by the WA Indigenous Tourism Operators Council (WAITOC). The conference’s theme was 'Aboriginal Dreaming: Become part of the Journey through Tourism', and emphasis was placed on youth, environment, culture and business tourism. The conference attracted Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander tourism operators from across Australia, as well as government and industry representatives, and Indigenous operators from overseas. “It enabled operators to strengthen their industry networks, and exchange ideas and experiences with each other and with international guests,” says Ninti One’s representative, Damien Jacobsen, who reports that a highlight was the debate about how Aboriginal tourism operators can take the industry forward through national and international alliances. “Attending the conference gave CRC-REP an opportunity to build its profile, gain an up-to-date view of the industry and develop networks with operators and industry contacts,” he says. back to top
The 2010–2011 Annual Report for CRC-REP is now available from our website http://crc-rep.com/news/crc-rep-annual-report-2010-11. This is a report of the first year of operations for our CRC. back to top
The number of locations where feral camels are being spotted and reported on from across remote Australia is increasing, says AFCMP’s Andy Bubb. Brochures and business cards promoting Camel Scan have been distributed far and wide, resulting in sighting reports from across the entire feral camel range being logged on the program’s website at http://www.feralscan.org.au/camelscan/ (see recent sample below).
The website also allows for reporting of camel damage, which is indicated by the white pins with a black D on them. We are keen to continue promoting the CamelScan website, and if you’d like brochures or business cards to hand out to the public travelling in remote Australia please contact us and we’ll send you some. back to top
Ferguson J. 2011. Submission to IP Australia on Intellectual Property Laws Amendment by Ninti One. Ninti One Limited. (pdf 0.3MB)
Ninti One Limited. 2011. Submission to DEEWR on Future of Remote Participation and Employment Servicing Arrangements Discussion Paper by Ninti One. Ninti One Limited. (pdf 0.5MB)
Ninti One Limited. 2011. Submission to DSEWPC on Nagoya Protocol of the Convention on Biological Diversity by Ninti One. Ninti One Limited. (pdf 0.2MB)
Ninti One Limited. 2011. Submission to FaHCSIA on Stronger Futures Discussion Paper by Ninti One. Ninti One Limited. (pdf 0.5MB)
Ninti One Limited. 2011. Submission to the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet, Office of the Arts on the National Cultural Policy Discussion Paper. Ninti One Limited. (pdf 0.2MB)
Rola-Rubzen M. 2011. The Anatomy of the Australian Entrepreneur: Understanding micro, small and medium business entrepreneurs in Australia. Ninti One Limited, Alice Springs. (pdf 1.7MB)
February 15, 2012 - February 17, 2012
May 15, 2012 - May 17, 2012
September 24, 2012 - September 28, 2012