Holding Hands and Walking Forward: Stories Shared by Indigenous Australian Business Women

Lee-Anne M. Daffy, Adela McMurray

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The aim of this study was to uncover the factors that impact on Indigenous business women in Victoria including their relationships with the Indigenous community. Using Feminist theory and Participatory Action Research, this study explored the life journeys of 21 Indigenous Australian business women residing in Victoria, Australia. In addition, Indigenous community views were explored as the participants shared stories, poetry or pictures to express their journey thereby providing richness to the qualitative data. All participants were considered to be co-researchers and the author being an Indigenous person, facilitated an open, trusting communication exchange. Using theme category analysis, the findings uncovered the four main themes of family; business; government; and culture/community as affecting both community and business women. These themes highlighted the critical areas of concern, including the importance of education, family connectedness and adequate support for these Indigenous women. The study extends the academic literature such as Mapunda (2007), Cahn (2008), Hindle et al (2002, 2005, 2007) Lee Ross and Mitchell (2007), Foley (2000, 2003, 2008) and Sesen and Pruett (2014), by informing state Government bodies, Indigenous communities and the academic fraternity. Finally, the study has significant translational findings that inform business, government, local community, women and Indigenous people.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)13-36
JournalJournal of Australian Indigenous Issues
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Social justice
  • Diversity
  • Indigenous
  • Women
  • Self-employment
  • Small Business Enterprises (SME)
  • Entrepreneurship


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