What is an Indigenous Australian business?

Dennis FOLEY, Boyd Hunter

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The word ‘business’ in an Australian Aboriginal context is often used to refer to customary forms of ceremony, ritual or kinship issues among family members. This paper analyses another important form of Indigenous ‘business’ in the capitalist economy of a modern Australia. Indigenous self-employed or entrepreneurs are becoming an increasingly important component of Indigenous economic activity for businesses are crucial for fostering independence for Indigenous people from government welfare and largely non-Indigenous workplaces. Policy makers and most other Australians recognise the importance of Indigenous business in enhancing social and economic outcomes of Indigenous peoples, but it remains surprisingly difficult to adequately define an Indigenous business. This paper discusses the main issues for providing a robust and defendable definition of what is Indigenous business that can be used to operationalize effective policy outcomes and facilitate the prospering of these businesses.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)66-75
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Australian Indigenous Issues
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2013


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