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How community-based innovation can help Australia close the Indigenous gap

Mark Moran writes in The Conversation (4.3.16) about how governments could help alleviate Indigenous disadvantage by supporting community-based innovation and economic networks in remote areas.

‘There is a strong bipartisan consensus that Australia needs to close the gap in Indigenous disadvantage. It is a credit to the federal government that it has remained consistent in monitoring progress. But while maintaining these targets is important, Australia clearly has an implementation problem.

‘Consistent with his widespread call for innovation, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull remarked in this year’s Closing the Gap address to parliament that:

The Closing the Gap challenge is often described as a problem to be solved – but more than anything it is an opportunity. If our greatest assets are our people, if our richest capital is our human capital, then the opportunity to empower the imagination, the enterprise, the wisdom and the full potential of our First Australians is an exciting one.

‘Across remote Australia, such innovation is occurring locally in practice, under the radar of government policies and support. Central to this innovation are relationships between community leaders and trusted outsiders, and the shared understanding and new knowledge they derive.’

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