The future of Indigenous work: Forecasts of labour force status to 2011

Boyd Hunter, Yohannes KINFU, John Taylor

Research output: Working paperDiscussion paper


The recent release of the final results for the 2001 Census presents an
opportunity to assess the net change in employment outcomes for Indigenous
Australians for the period covering the first two Howard administrations. This
paper uses demographic techniques to make valid comparisons over time, and
hence facilitate estimates of future employment levels against projected
population growth. The 2001 Census data reveal no improvement in the overall
position of Indigenous people in the labour market since 1996. Because of a
growing Indigenous working-age population, new estimates of future job growth point to a lowering of employment rates and rising unemployment over the remainder of this decade. Overall, the current fiscal cost of this failure to
eradicate Indigenous employment disparity is massive—in 2001 it was estimated
to be around 0.5 per cent of Australian Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Findings
from this new analysis indicate that the cost will be even higher in the future.
Original languageEnglish
PublisherAustralian National University
Number of pages33
ISBN (Print)9780731556267
Publication statusPublished - 2003
Externally publishedYes


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