Estimating Lifetime Socio-Economic Disadvantage in the Australian Indigenous Population and Returns to Education

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Conference Paper


This study compares lifetime employment and labour income outcomes for Indigenous Australians against all people in Australia. The method involves life-table analysis in which employment rates are combined with life-table indicators. This allows factoring mortality differentials between Indigenous and other populations. Age specific employment rates and average annual income were derived from the 2006 Census separately for those with certificate or higher education, Year 12 and less than Year 12 education. Life tables for Indigenous and total Australians were taken from the Australian Bureau of Statistics. Males with certificate or higher education are likely to spend the longest years in work and earn the highest amount over the life time. They are like to earn almost 10 times the Indigenous females with below 12 years of education who fall at the bottom in terms of work and earning, if the current pattern of employment and earning prevails.


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