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Building Indigenous Social Capital in an Online World

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Abstract:

This paper examines the nexus between social relations of mutual benefit, information communication technology (ICT) access and social inclusion. More specifically, a case study methodology is used to examine the role of ICT in facilitating the social capital of Indigenous communities. A remote Indigenous community in the Northern Territory (NT) is the focus of the paper. Whilst the potential of social capital to affect positive outcomes across a diverse range of areas is well researched, Indigenous disadvantage is well documented and the role of ICT in facilitating social and economic development is well established, although little is known about the ICT social capital nexus in an Indigenous context. The paper commences with a review of the social capital literature. A description of the methodology employed in the data collection phase of the project is followed by the case study. The paper concludes with a summary of the findings and recommendations for further research.

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