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Demographers to highlight Alice's unique character

Demography seminar
Northern Institute demographers will host a presentation and public discussion about Alice Springs’ population at CDU campus on Monday. Image: Tourism Australia/Nicholas Kavo.

A team of expert demographers from Charles Darwin University’s Northern Institute will present insights from recent population research and what it means for Central Australia in a seminar at Alice Springs campus on Monday.

Research Associate Fiona Shalley of the Demography and Growth Planning team said the event would include an open discussion about the population opportunities and challenges facing the people of Alice Springs.

“It’s a town that has experienced a steady decline in population since 2011, but the NT’s COVID-safe reputation may influence its future,” Ms Shalley said.

“The presentation will include findings from ‘The Territory and Me’ survey, and a snapshot of what people love about living in Alice and what they don’t love so much; why people came, what makes them stay, and why some people might want to leave.”

Dr George Tan will describe characteristics of the town’s population, as well as some insights to understand why the overseas-born population is more likely to stay in Alice relative to others.

“Some characteristics of the town are well known – that it’s an established hub for same-sex couples and same-sex marriage and that it has a diverse multicultural mix, but there are other factors that are less well known, such as the significant population ageing and the female gender bias, which is in stark contrast to the male bias in the Territory as a whole.”

Ms Shalley said colleague Dr Sigurd Dyrting would share his early findings on the updated “The Territory and Me” survey, which included some new information on whether migration drivers had changed since COVID emerged.

Dr David Karacsonyi will compare Alice with other remote towns that service sparsely populated areas, emphasising Alice’s uniqueness in the context of the rest of the world. Associate Professor Andrew Taylor will explore some scenarios for Alice’s population given the monumental changes in national and international migration patterns from the COVID-19 pandemic. 

“A Focus on Alice: People, Place & Pandemic Impacts” seminar will be held on Monday 2 November from 4pm to 6pm at the Higher Education building theatre (Building 15), Alice Springs campus.

Registration is essential:  http://bit.ly/focus-on-alice