Project number: 2017-039
Project Status:
Budget expenditure: $5,100.00
Principal Investigator: Julian Morison
Organisation: Developing East Arnhem Ltd (DEAL)
Project start/end date: 31 Jul 2017 - 30 Dec 2018


More than 25% of the NT Population identify as Indigenous - the highest proportion in any state or territory. Indigenous people also own approximately 84% of the NT coastline. Participation of Indigenous people in industries and businesses that align closely with cultural values such as in natural and cultural resource management have been shown to have beneficial social, economic and health outcomes.

There is a need to expand the proportion of Indigenous people participating in all aspects of the NT commercial fishing and seafood industry. This includes through capacity building activities, traineeships, employment, research, education and extension services.

Currently there is a silo approach across local, Territory and Commonwealth agencies and programs to achieve this and poor integration across sectors. Julian Morison from EconSearch, the Principal Investigator for this proposed project, is currently leading two projects in the NT that are designed to address the problems largely arising from this silo approach. One is the lack of current economic information about the NT Seafood Industry. The second involves providing advice on fishing and aquaculture industry market opportunities, through an economic assessment of the current value and nature of opportunities in the NT market with a particular focus on the market size, value and opportunities that are present in East Arnhem Land.

These two studies which are due for completion in March and May 2017, respectively, will provide a solid basis for the proposed project. The primary aim of this project is to conduct research and stakeholder consultation to identify ways to promote and increase participation and employment of Indigenous people in NT fishing and seafood industries.

The project is to be managed under the auspices of Developing East Arnhem Limited (DEAL). DEAL is a not-for-profit development body established in November 2014 to act as the front door to the region for industry and business. DEAL facilitates connections between private enterprise, industry, community and government agencies to support economic diversification and growth in the East Arnhem region for the benefit of the regional population.


1. Identify five programs or initiatives (at least two short term and at least two longer term) to promote and increase participation and employment of Indigenous people in NT fishing and seafood industries.
2. Directly involve decision makers in the communities and related fisheries in the conduct of the project through their participation in the development of the programs and initiatives.

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