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Indigenous data sovereignty in the era of Big Data and Open Data


Walter, M and Lovett, R and Maher, B and Williamson, B and Prehn, J and Bodkin-Andrews, G and Lee, V, Indigenous data sovereignty in the era of Big Data and Open Data, Australian Journal of Social Issues pp. 1-14. ISSN 0157-6321 (2020) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2020 Australian Social Policy Association

DOI: doi:10.1002/ajs4.141


Indigenous Data Sovereignty, in its proclamation of the right of Indigenous peoples to govern the collection, ownership, and application of data, recognises data as a cultural and economic asset. The impact of data are magnified by the emergence of Big Data and the associated impetus to open publicly held data (Open Data). Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, families and communities, heavily overrepresented in social disadvantage related data will also be overrepresented in the application of these new technologies. But, in a data landscape Indigenous peoples remain largely alienated from the use of data and its utilization within the channels of policy power. Existing data infrastructure, and the emerging Open Data infrastructure, neither recognise Indigenous agency, worldviews nor consider Indigenous data needs. This is demonstrated in the absence of any consideration of Indigenous data issues Open Data discussions and publication. So, while the potential benefits of this data revolution are trumpeted, our marginalised social, cultural and political location suggest we will not share equally in these benefits. This paper discusses the unforeseen (and likely unseen) consequences of the influence Open data and Big Data and discusses how Indigenous Data Sovereignty can mediate risks while providing pathways to collective benefits.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:Aboriginal people, accountability, partnerships, policy, productivity
Research Division:Indigenous Studies
Research Group:Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander sciences
Research Field:Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander information and knowledge management systems
Objective Division:Law, Politics and Community Services
Objective Group:Government and politics
Objective Field:Public services policy advice and analysis
UTAS Author:Walter, M (Professor Maggie Walter)
UTAS Author:Prehn, J (Dr Jacob Prehn)
ID Code:141566
Year Published:2020
Web of Science® Times Cited:32
Deposited By:Social Work
Deposited On:2020-10-29
Last Modified:2021-03-11
Downloads:1 View Download Statistics

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