Law Text Culture


John Taylor


Australian postcolonial demography, or ‘Indigenous demography’ as it has become colloquially labelled (Taylor 2009a), has emerged as a form of applied demography in support of attempts by the state to quantify and respond to the social and economic needs of Indigenous Australians as a separately identified homogenous group. In this way it forms part of a social justice agenda that gained impetus by the late 1960s by the calibration of Indigenous socioeconomic change relative to non-Indigenous outcomes as a device for policy formation (Rowse and Smith 2010: 100). This is presently articulated as a ‘Closing the Gaps’ strategy, with the aim being to bring about convergence in outcomes by shifting Indigenous indicators closer to those observed for the wider majority population.