Reports and publications (published elsewhere)

The subjective wellbeing of Indigenous Australians

Posted on: 20 December, 2010
Issue: Vol 10 No 4, October - December 2010
Related to Social and emotional wellbeing Social issues

Dockery AM (2010)
The subjective wellbeing of Indigenous Australians
Perth, WA: Centre for Labour Market Research, Curtin Business School

This paper utilises data on self-assessed quality of life available from the expanded Indigenous sample of the 2001 National health survey to compare the subjective wellbeing of Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians. Assuming cross-cultural comparability of responses to the quality of life scale, Indigenous Australians are found to face a markedly lower quality of life than other Australians, consistent with the many objective measures of socio-economic outcomes. Differences in the determinants of subjective wellbeing are further explored to identify differences in values and preferences that may be embodied in Indigenous culture. The analysis is considered exploratory given the many limitations of the current data. The collection of data that can improve our understanding of the cultural constructions of wellbeing is identified as an important priority given the pertinence of such evidence for the formulation of policy to address the ongoing plight of Indigenous Australians.

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