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Working with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples

National Roadmap for Indigenous Skills, Jobs and Wealth Creation

The National Roadmap for Indigenous Skills, Jobs and Wealth Creation (the National Roadmap) provides a long-term commitment and organising framework to implement actions that will lift economic outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

It will drive Government and industry investment in human, social and economic capital and connect Indigenous Australians to jobs and industry opportunities. The National Roadmap and its focus on enabling economic opportunity will complement the National Agreement on Closing the Gap and its focus on addressing social inequalities.

The delivery of the National Roadmap will be a collective effort from industry, Indigenous Australians and governments at all levels. The involvement and leadership of all sectors will be required to effect meaningful change in partnership with Indigenous Australians.

Why a National Roadmap?

Indigenous Australians will play an important role in Australia’s economic recovery from the COVID‑19 pandemic and longer term economic prosperity.

As the Australian economy emerges from the coronavirus pandemic, fully activating and supporting Indigenous Australians to gain the skills and confidence needed to enter into jobs, upskill into more technical, managerial and leadership positions and to establish and thrive in their careers, will be a key part of Australian businesses resolving skill and workforce shortages and the Australian economy’s future growth.

The National Roadmap recognises the unique skills, knowledge, culture and role of Indigenous Australians and that fostering and protecting these strengths is integral to the success of government, business and the economy.

The National Roadmap will support the achievement of Closing the Gap targets on tertiary qualifications (Outcome 6), youth in employment or education (Outcome 7), economic participation (Outcome 8) and relationship with land and waters (Outcome 15).

It will also contribute to achieving the Priority Reforms which lie at the heart of the National Agreement, by facilitating greater partnership and engagement between industry and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people (Priority Reforms One and Three), building the enabling environment for Indigenous organisations (Priority Reform Two) and addressing issues of racism (Priority Reform Three).

Policy Domains

The National Roadmap is organised around three key domains: Skills, Jobs and Business. Each domain is underpinned by a series of policy pillars designed to drive enhanced economic opportunities and pathways to sustainable change.


  • Youth transitions from school to further education and training, entrepreneurship and employment.
  • Increase access to and completion of vocational education and training and higher education.
  • Promoting career pathways, skills and opportunities for Indigenous Australians to upskill into technical and leadership roles and to start and grow a business.


  • Improving the delivery of employment services so Indigenous Australians achieve better job outcomes.
  • Complementary actions to get more Indigenous Australians in to work, access to career advice and support career aspirations.


  • Activating land, sea, water and cultural resource rights.
  • Increasing demand for Indigenous business across a broader range of industry sectors.
  • Improving supply side support by investing in capability and increasing access to capital and markets.

Who is involved?

The National Roadmap is a collaborative effort between governments, business, industry, the public and non-government sector, and Indigenous Australians.

Between August and October 2021, the National Indigenous Australians Agency hosted twelve Industry Roundtables, co-hosted by Industry Champions, and thirteen policy deep dives with senior policy-makers from across the Australian Public Service, to develop and discuss ideas. 

Over 200 industry representatives, Indigenous and non-Indigenous, from a diverse range of business sectors, community-controlled organisations, industry peak bodies, business chambers, employer groups, government, education and service providers, unions, academia and entrepreneurs, participated in the sessions. Importantly, more than 40 per cent of participants in the Industry Roundtables identified as being of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander descent. 

The National Roadmap will support industry leaders to develop their own Roadmaps for enhanced pathways for Indigenous Australians into their companies, as well as better supporting career advancement opportunities. Government, industry and Indigenous leaders, business and communities will work in partnership to drive desired outcomes.

A small group of Industry Champions – Indigenous and non-Indigenous – are working closely with the Minister for Indigenous Australians, to support the National Roadmap’s development from industry’s perspective.

Industry Champions involved in the National Roadmap:

  • Ms Jennifer Westacott, Chief Executive of the Business Council of Australia
  • Ms Tania Constable PSM, Chief Executive of the Minerals Council of Australia
  • Mr Innes Willox, Chief Executive of the Australian Industry Group
  • Dr Brendan Nelson, President of Boeing Australia, New Zealand and South Pacific
  • Ms Lara Watson, Australian Council of Trade Unions
  • Ms Jenny Lambert, Employment & Skills Director, Australian Chamber of Commerce & Industry
  • Mr Adam Boyton, National Skills Commissioner
  • Mr Darren Godwell, CEO i2i Global
  • Ms Mikaela Jade, Founder and CEO Indigitel
  • Mr Shane Fields, Managing Director of Fields Group
  • Mr Neville Power, Chairman of Perth Airport
  • Mr Tom Harley, Chief Executive Officer of Sydney Swans
  • Ms Carolyn McCann, Group Executive at Westpac
  • Ms Jo Boundy, Chief Marketing Officer of Qantas Group
  • Mr Jeff Maguire, Group Head of CDS Implementation at Coca-Cola Europacific Partners Australia
  • Ms Kate Carnell, Former Australian Small Business & Family Enterprise Ombudsman

The Minister for Indigenous Australians is also establishing an Indigenous Reference Group to support the development and direction of the National Roadmap. This group of Indigenous leaders will provide advice and feedback on the development of specific actions that can address the key policy domains.

Updates on the progress of the National Roadmap will be posted to this webpage.



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