Assessment one: Case study

Read and reflect on the Sambell Oration and the Prime Ministers Address to Garma Festival. These can be accessed from your Blackboard unit. Using the menu on the left, navigate to Assessments > Assessment 1: Case Study.

You are then required to write a 1,000 - 1,200 word response on the importance of understanding and respecting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture. Below is some guidance on searching for information sources to support your case study.

General search tips

Check out the Recommended sources listed below. The articles, reports and news source have been identified for you as being highly relevant for this assessment. Save yourself some time and read them - it’ll give you a head start!

Academic journal articles are mostly held behind paywalls (a method of restricting your access to paid content) so you won’t be able to find them through Google. Search for information through the library’s catalogue and databases to find what you need and watch these short videos.

Read the assessment questions and the marking rubric carefully. These will give you information that will help you develop an effective search, make sure you’re using the right kinds of evidence (like journal articles!), and addressing all necessary questions.

The Indigenous Voice Co-Design Process: Final Report to the Australian Government listed under organisation reports should be your first reading for question one.The sources listed provide a starting point for assessment one but you should also do your own research, particularly if you are looking for higher marks. You’ll find some research tips in the next section, Research tips for assessment one.


Stanley, Fiona, Marcia Langton, James Ward, Daniel McAullay, and Sandra Eades. 2021. “Australian First Nations Response to the Pandemic: A Dramatic Reversal of the ‘Gap’.” Journal of Paediatrics and Child Health 57 (12): 1853–1856.

Why use it? This article considers why Indigenous communities were so successful in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic. It provides a case study of how governments can work productively with Indigenous people and discusses this in the context of the Voice proposal. Some of the researchers are Indigenous, enhancing their credibility and the participation of Indigenous people in the study. Notably, Marcia Langton is a leading advocate for the Voice to Parliament. The article also mentions the so-called third chamber. For more information on this see Will the proposed Indigenous Voice to Parliament become a third chamber?

Hint: Useful for Q2 & overall assessment.


Davis, Megan. 2015. “Closing the Gap in Indigenous Disadvantage: A Trajectory of Indigenous Inequality in Australia.” Georgetown Journal of International Affairs 16 (1): 34-44.

Why use it? While this source was published in 2015, it is very useful in understanding the history of Indigenous/non-Indigenous relations in Australia. It will therefore help you to understand the historical context behind the Voice proposal. The author, Megan Davis, is a prominent Indigenous scholar and a leading advocate for recognising Indigenous peoples in the Australian constitution.

Hint: Useful for Q1 & overall assessment.


Schultz, Rosalie. 2020. “Closing the Gap and the Sustainable Development Goals: Listening to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People.” Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health 44 (1): 11-13.

Why use it? At first glance, this article looking at the similarities between the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals and Australia’s Closing the Gap (CTG) targets may not seem relevant for this assessment. However, the article discusses and critiques some of the ideas behind Australia’s CTG strategy and argues for a change of approach to overcome Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander disadvantage.

Hint: Useful for Q1, Q2 & overall assessment.


Webster, Emma, Allan Hall, Yvonne Hill, Cecil See, Eunice Simons, Rachel Havrlant, and Regina Osten. 2022. “Building Cultural Responsiveness in a Mainstream Health Organisation with ‘8 Aboriginal Ways of Learning’: A Participatory Action Research Study.” Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health 46 (4): 517-523.

Why use it? In this article, the authors examine the effects of a training program to improve cultural responsiveness. Although the article focuses on a health service rather than a business, it discusses how organisations can be more approachable, acceptable and appropriate for Indigenous people. Some of the researchers are Indigenous, enhancing their credibility and the participation of Indigenous people in the study. The Introduction and Discussion will be most useful for your assessment.

Hint: Useful for Q3 & overall assessment.


Heard, Isaac, Peter E.D. Love, Michael C.P. Sing, and Veronica Goerke. 2017. “Learning to Build Relationships for a Better Australia: Indigenous Reconciliation in Action in the Construction and Resource Sectors.” Construction Innovation 17 (1): 4-24.

Why use it? This article explores how construction and resource companies operating in Western Australia have been planning to build better relationships with Indigenous communities as part of their corporate social responsibility (CSR) programme. It also describes some strategies companies can follow to improve how they engage with Indigenous people. The Findings and discussions section and the Conclusion will be most useful for your assessment.

Hint: Useful for Q3 & overall assessment.


National Indigenous Australians Agency. 2021. Indigenous Voice Co-Design Process: Final Report to the Australian Government. Canberra, ACT: Australian Government.

Why use it? This report, authored by the National Indigenous Australians Agency, presents the proposals for an Indigenous Voice and considerations for its implementation. It details the processes and outcome of an 18-month co-design process of consultation and engagement. Chapter 2: National Voice, provides key information on how the National Voice would be designed. The co-chairs of the report, Marcia Langton and Tom Calma, are both prominent Indigenous intellectuals.

Hint: Read this first. Useful for Q1 & overall assessment.


Hunt, Janet. 2018. “Closing the Gap - Refresh or Start Afresh?” In Closing the Gap Refresh: Papering Over the Gaps or Structural Reform?, edited by Francis Markham, Kerrily Jordan, and Deidre Howard-Wagner, 7-8. Canberra: Centre for Aboriginal Economic Policy Research.

Why use it? Written 10 years after the Closing the Gap (CTG) targets were launched, this paper considers how governments in Australia should engage with Indigenous peoples. While this paper is not directly related to the Voice proposal, it will support you to understand the relationship between Indigenous empowerment and positive outcomes for communities. The organisation responsible for publishing the report, the Centre for Aboriginal Economic Policy Research (CAEPR), is very credible.

Hint: Useful for Q1, Q2 & overall assessment.


Russell, Sophie, and Chris Cunneen. 2018. “As Indigenous Incarceration Rates Keep Rising, Justice Reinvestment Offers a Solution.” The Conversation.

Why use it? This article discusses “justice reinvestment”, which involves working with local communities to address the underlying causes of crime and imprisonment. While not directly related to the Voice proposal, the article provides an example of a policy that was designed and implemented in partnership with Indigenous communities. The Conversation, the news organisation responsible for this article, largely publishes content written by academics, so it’s generally more credible than other news sources.

Hint: Useful for Q2 & overall assessment.

Research tips for assessment one

The recommended sources provided are an excellent starting point for assessment one, and you can use them to locate additional useful sources. This is done by linking to the references included, and exploring those studies for more information.

Watch this short video which demonstrates how to search for a source included in a reference list:

Below are recommended keywords to get you started with your search. Look for journal articles, books and book chapters as well as reports.

Recommended databases: Library catalogue, ProQuest, Taylor & Francis, Wiley

Recommended source types: Journal articles, books, book chapters

Recommended keywords for Questions 1, 2 & 3
Question 1
What is the purpose of the Voice to Parliament? How would the Voice be designed and why? What mechanism would be used for selecting members and what advice would it give?
- Voice to parliament OR Constitutional recognition AND Aboriginal OR Indigenous
Question 2
Consider and explain the potential effects an Indigenous Voice to Parliament (enshrined in The Constitution) could have on Indigenous communities. Link this to addressing the (17) Closing the Gap targets, focus on one (1) or two (2) to illustrate specific examples.
- Closing the gap OR Reconciliation AND Aboriginal OR Indigenous
*Use keywords relating to your chosen Closing the Gap targets eg health, education, employment, housing, incarceration etc
Eg: Closing the Gap OR reconciliation AND housing AND Aboriginal OR Indigenous
Question 3
According to its proponents, the voice creates an opportunity for Indigenous people to meaningfully engage in policymaking and law. What does meaningful engagement of Indigenous people look like in a business environment?
- reconciliation AND business AND Aboriginal OR Indigenous
- Aboriginal ways of knowing AND business
- Aboriginal ways of working AND business

There are a number of online sources relating to the purpose and impact of an Indigenous Voice to parliament. Try a Google search for: Voice to parliament AND Closing the Gap AND indigenous OR aboriginal site:au to find some relevant websites. These sources may not be suitable to include in your assignment - you will need to assess their quality and credibility before deciding whether to include them (check out our guide on Evaluating sources and lateral reading for tips. In either case, they may be helpful for background reading and to find keywords for your searches.