Indigenous Economic Development Forum

The 8th Indigenous Economic Development (IED) Forum was held on Monday 23 October and Tuesday 24 October 2017 at the Darwin Convention Centre. The forum was a key event held during October Business Month that included a welcome reception hosted by the Chief Minister at Parliament House, plenary sessions with keynote presentations, breakout sessions and an expo showcasing Indigenous businesses, services and programs.

Building on previous IED forums, there was an emphasis on providing an opportunity to encourage strong networks and partnerships between Indigenous entrepreneurs, the private sector, government and non-government organisations. Indigenous businesses from across the Northern Territory (NT) showcased their products and services to stakeholders with a vested interest in progressing IED.

Sponsorship and in kind partnership arrangements for the forum had a strong uptake from the private, government and non-government sectors and played a critical role in the success of the forum.

The forum attracted 428 registrations, of which 397 attended. This has increased from the 313 that attended in 2015. This level of attendance highlights the commitment and support for IED in the NT.

The forum program was comprehensive with a total of 81 speakers across the two days. This involved 24 speakers in the plenary sessions including the Ministerial address, four keynote presentations, one sponsor address, a panel discussion and two on the couch sessions with a further 41 presentations across diverse topics in 10 breakout sessions.

A number of value add program initiatives included:

  • On Sunday 22 October 2017 a welcome reception was held at Parliament House to officially open the forum and recognise the support of the sponsors and partners with entertainment by David Spry.
  • There were 53 Indigenous businesses that showcased in the Indigenous Business Marketplace.
  • Breakfasts within the expo area were provided for delegates on both days to enhance networking and business opportunities and discussions.
  • A partnership with Karen Sheldon provided a coffee cart, staffed by Aboriginal baristas who served quality coffee on both days with a waiting line affectionately known as the networking line.
  • Entertainment by Electric Fields was a major highlight during the lunch time of day two and wrapped up the forum on a high note.

Feedback received from a range of delegates was extremely positive with many saying it was the best forum to date. The NT IED forums are now one of the largest IED specific events held in Australia.

The next Indigenous Economic Development Forum will be held in 2019.

(L to R) Cian McCue, Alice Beilby, Mickey WunungmurraPanel session: Developing the North is front and centre of the discussion on Australia’s future

Images (L to R):

(L to R):
Cian McCue, Owner and Creative Director, Moogie Down Production
Alice Beilby, Managing Director, Savanna Solutions Pty Ltd
Mickey Wunungmurra, Deputy Chairman, Arnhem Land Progress Aboriginal Corporation

Panel session: Developing the North is front and centre of the discussion on Australia’s future
Facilitated by Jason Elsegood, Director and Chief Executive Officer, Cross Cultural Consultants and Co-Director, IE Project (NT) Pty Ltd
Panel members (L to R):
Nigel Browne, Chief Executive Officer, Larrakia Development Corporation
Luke Bowen, General Manager, Northern Australia Development and Trade, Department of Trade, Business and Innovation, Northern Territory Government
Sally Clarke, Assistant Director, Office of Northern Australia, Department of Industry, Innovation and Science, Australian Government
Dr Donna Odegaard AM, Chief Executive Officer, Aboriginal Broadcasting Australia

Last updated: 04 July 2018