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Deconstructing consultative frameworks: the case of staff housing provision in Burringurrah, Western Australia

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Housing for government-employed staff in remote Aboriginal communities is a topic that raises considerable debate amongst those whom it affects. Striking at the heart of Australia's effort towards reconciliation and a legacy of policy failure, debate regarding standards and siting of staff housing is highly political in nature. In Burringurrah, Western Australia, two government agencies recently undertook projects to provide staff housing within the community. Each agency approached its projects differently, but in both cases response at the 'grassroots' level was negative. This paper argues that a primary, but indirect, influence on 'community' satisfaction was the ideological structure of each agency. It follows, then, that understanding this organisational context is crucial to achieving more appropriate housing outcomes in the community.

Keywords: Consultative frameworks; marginalisation; deep colonising; planning; political interrelationships; staff housing

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Macquarie University Australia

Publication date: March 1, 2004

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