Skip to Content
 Close search

Overcoming Indigenous Disadvantage: Key Indicators 2011

Overcoming Indigenous Disadvantage: Key Indicators 2011 was released on 25 August 2011.

In April 2002, the Council of Australian Governments commissioned the Steering Committee to produce a regular report against key indicators of Indigenous disadvantage. This report has an important long-term objective. It is to inform Australian governments about whether policies and programs are achieving positive outcomes for Indigenous people. This will help guide where further work is needed.

Please note: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are advised that this website may contain names, images and voices of deceased people. It may also link to other websites which contain names, images and voices of deceased people.

Download the overview booklet

Download the report

  • Chapters
  • Media release
  • Factsheets
  • Errata

Chapter 1 Introduction

Chapter 2 The framework

Chapter 3 Interactions across the framework

Chapter 4 COAG targets and headline indicators

Chapter 5 Early child development

Chapter 6 Education and training

Chapter 7 Healthy lives

Chapter 8 Economic participation

Chapter 9 Home environment

Chapter 10 Safe and supportive communities

Chapter 11 Governance and leadership

Chapter 12 Outcomes for Torres Strait Islander people

Chapter 13 Measuring multiple disadvantage

Appendix 1 COAG Communiqu├ęs

Appendix 2 Implementation of the framework

Appendix 3 Indigenous population and language use

Appendix 4 Data limitations

Appendix 5 Measures and data sources


Overcoming Indigenous Disadvantage: Latest Data

The latest Overcoming Indigenous Disadvantage report was released on 25 August. This is the most recent in a series of reports commissioned by the Council of Australian Governments in 2002, to track the extent to which government policies and programs are making a difference to the lives of Indigenous Australians.

Gary Banks, who chairs the inter-governmental Steering Committee responsible for the report, said 'the latest data still reveal considerable disparities in outcomes between Indigenous and other Australians. This applies across the six COAG 'closing the gap' targets, as well as for over 40 other significant indicators. And progress in closing those gaps has been mixed'.

Of the 45 quantitative indicators in the report, available data show improvement in outcomes for 13 indicators — including in employment, educational attainment and home ownership. For 10 indicators, including many health and school education outcomes, there has been no significant improvement, while for another seven, including social indicators such as criminal justice, outcomes have actually deteriorated.

The report reflects ongoing improvements in data collections, but data to measure change over time were not available for one third of the indicators in this edition. Gary Banks strongly supported governments' commitment to improving data availability and quality. He also praised the contributions of all those who participated in report consultations, from within government and the wider community, particularly Indigenous people.

The report is a product of the Review of Government Service Provision. It is overseen by a Steering Committee comprising senior officials from the Australian, State and Territory governments and supported by a secretariat from the Productivity Commission.

The following  errata have been issued for Overcoming Indigenous Disadvantage: Key Indicators 2011 . The chapters and appendices on the website have been amended to reflect  these errata.


The paragraph on employment on page 5 of the overview has  been amended — an apparent increase in  the employment to population ratio for Indigenous people (from 50.7 per  cent to 53.8 per cent) was not statistically significant.

The first key message in box 10 on page 23 has been amended — an apparent increase in the employment  to population ratio for Indigenous people (from 50.7 per cent to 53.8 per  cent) was not statistically significant.

Chapter 4: COAG  Targets and headline indicators

The first key message in box 4.6.1 on page 4.59 and related  text on page 4.63 have been amended —  an  apparent increase in the employment to population ratio for Indigenous people  (from 50.7 per cent to 53.8 per cent) was not statistically significant.

Figure 4.6.2 on page 4.64 was incorrectly based on data for 2004-05,  which has now been revised to 2008.

Chapter 8: Economic  participation

Data in the first paragraph on page 8.8 on COAG’s target for  Indigenous public sector employment and the proportion of Indigenous people in  the Australian public sector have been corrected.

Chapter 9: Home  environment

Data for the ACT and Tasmania in the second bullet point  under figure 9.1.1 on page 9.8 have been corrected.

Printed copies

Printed copies of this report can be purchased from Canprint Communications.

Publications feedback

We value your comments about this publication and encourage you to provide feedback.

Submit publications feedback