Exploring the Understanding of Money in Indigenous Australia: Using Indigenous Research Methodologies


A large number of Indigenous Australians live in remote locations, enduring often harsh physical environments. They face multidimensional socio-economic disadvantage, including social and financial exclusion. This case study describes the end-to-end research process undertaken by a PhD student, to explore the understanding of money in two remote Indigenous communities. Studying how Indigenous people in remote communities understand and want to use money helps to inform social policy and ongoing efforts to enhance their financial inclusion. Existing research highlights a significant ‘gap’ in financial outcomes for Indigenous people as compared to mainstream Australia. However, there is little academic research exploring how Indigenous people themselves view the world of money and finances. This case study discusses the challenges faced by a first-time researcher before, during and after the research was undertaken, the strategies employed to overcome these challenges and the lessons learned.

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