Abstract: Throughout the world, there is growing recognition of the important role Indigenous people play in natural resource management and conservation. Indigenous Land and Sea Management Programs (ILSMPs; which provide funds to Indigenous people to support Indigenous land management activities) are also known to generate social and economic benefits, although relative few of these co-benefits have been quantified. Using northern Australia as a case study, we analysed data on ILSMP expenditure within three regional input–output tables, learning more about the size and distribution of their associated regional economic benefits. We found ILSMPs make a significant contribution to regional economies—with multipliers commonly exceeding that of other key regional industries such as agriculture and mining. We also found ILSMP expenditures make a larger contribution to Indigenous household incomes than they do to non-Indigenous incomes—thus helping to close the (income) gap. They will continue to do so, provided the proportion of ILSMP money spent on Indigenous (compared to non-Indigenous) incomes does not fall below a threshold amount. Rather than finding evidence of a trade-off between socio-ecological and financial/economic goals, our results suggest ILSMPs, known for their ecological importance, can also make a vitally important contribution to economic development in rural areas.
Jarvis, Diane, Stoeckl, Natalie, Hill, Ro, Pert, Petina, 2018, Indigenous land and sea management programs: Can they promote regional development and help “close the (income) gap”?, Journal Article, viewed 02 December 2023, https://www.nintione.com.au/?p=13343.