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How can organizations drive better governance practices: Learnings from the Indigenous Governance Forum 2024

Lumi Global were delighted to have recently attended the Indigenous Governance Forum 2024, which was a significant gathering focused on the resilience and leadership of First Nations communities in Australia.

The event aims to drive positive change and community empowerment. In this blog, we explore the key themes and learnings from the day, as well as how the industry can uphold good governance practices.

What are the 3 key Indigenous governance principles?


Throughout the forum, a powerful narrative of strength and self-determination emerged, highlighting the following key themes and principles:

  1. The importance of self-determination and community leadership
    During the event, speakers underscored the importance of self-determination in Indigenous governance. They emphasized how reclaiming autonomy over governance structures allows communities to preserve cultural identities and drive sustainable development tailored to their unique needs.

"Self-determination is our guiding principle, weaving together our cultural heritage with contemporary governance to shape a future where our communities thrive." - Tricia Stroud, Registrar, Office of Registrar of Indigenous Corporations.

  1. The significance of Indigenous data sovereignty
    The discussions on Indigenous data sovereignty emphasized the reclaiming of narratives and knowledge systems. Speakers highlighted the importance of embedding Indigenous data governance within institutions to protect intellectual property and ensure data use aligns with community priorities.

            " Indigenous data sovereignty empowers us to reclaim our stories and harness data for the betterment of our communities, ensuring our voices are heard               and respected." - Bobby Maher – National Centre for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Wellbeing Research, The Australian National University.

3. The vital function that community-controlled organizations play
During the event, case studies from community-controlled organizations like the Deadly Sports Plus Aboriginal Corporation were shared. As the sole Aboriginal Community-Controlled Organization and charity providing high-quality event first aid services and training across Australia, their work helps to highlight the impact of community-controlled organizations, which provide essential services and foster inclusivity while empowering future generations.

In summary, it's crucial to understand that effective governance extends beyond compliance. It requires us to empathetically nurture strengths and foster partnerships that genuinely honour traditions and aspirations, recognizing the profound value of these principles in our journey of learning and growth.


3 ways the industry can keep pace and uphold good governance practices

The insights shared at the forum carry profound implications for governance practices, policies, and corporate strategies. Here are some measures organizations can take towards maintaining good governance:

1. Policy reform
There is a compelling call for policy reforms that prioritize Indigenous governance frameworks, fostering legislation that supports self-determination and upholds Indigenous data rights.

2. Corporate engagement
Businesses are encouraged to embrace inclusive practices that elevate First Peoples’ leadership and incorporate community-driven decision-making processes. Collaborating respectfully with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities, ensures initiatives are culturally appropriate and beneficial.

3. Facilitating capacity building
Investing in leadership development and capacity-building initiatives is pivotal. The key lies in empowering young First Nations leaders and strengthening community governance structures through training and support enhances resilience and sustainability.


Lumi’s commitment to supporting better governance

  1. Create more accessible community meetings
    Enabling annual gatherings such as the Annual General Meeting (AGM) to become more easily accessible, inclusive and engaging for members. For instance, a hybrid format will allow more community members (including those in remote regions) to take part and vote on decisions affecting their own affairs.
  2. Encourage technology adoption
    From registration, electronic voting at the AGM and collecting feedback on surveys, automation technology adoption helps to ensure efficiency and seamlessness.
  3. Amplify member voice
    Adopting advanced meeting technology such as virtual microphone will allow members to have their voices heard through multiple mediums, creating parity of experience for all attendees.

The Indigenous Governance Forum 2024 showcased not only the enduring resilience and leadership but also the strength and potential of First Nations communities. By prioritizing the themes that were brought to the forefront of the event and fostering inclusive governance practices, we can celebrate the significant contributions of First Peoples in shaping policies and practices.

To learn more about how Lumi Global can support your organisation empower its members, book a meeting today.


Lumi acknowledges Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as the First Peoples of this nation. We proudly recognise Elders past, present and emerging as the Traditional Owners of the lands on which we work and live.

We’re committed to supporting Indigenous self-determination and envision a future where all Australians embrace Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories, cultures and rights as a central part of our national identity.


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