Population projections by indigenous status incorporating exogamy and inter-ethnic mobility: a case study of the northern territory, Australia

Tom Wilson, Charles Darwin University

The Northern Territory (NT) of Australia is demographically quite distinct from the other states and territories of the country. Indigenous people comprise about 30% of the population compared to no more than 4% in other jurisdictions, and they experience considerably higher fertility and mortality and much lower interstate migration rates than non-indigenous people. Typically projections for the NT have been produced without an indigenous/non-indigenous split, but the very different demographic regimes of the two populations suggest that such a disaggregation is essential. This paper presents a multistate cohort-component population projection model for the NT distinguishing indigenous status. It models births to mixed partnerships and, given the self-defined and socially constructed nature of indigeneity, permits inter-ethnic mobility. Projection scenarios under a variety of fertility, mortality, migration, exogamy and inter-ethnic mobility assumptions are presented. These projections demonstrate, inter alia, rapid population ageing in the NT and completion of the indigenous demographic transition.

Presented in Session 58: Population forecast and projections of small areas and special groups