“Working with data you can lose the human story very easily, but ultimately we’re talking about people, and people live in communities and communities have relationships and existing structures around governance and things that we need to incorporate.”
This is an extraordinary episode with Jarrod Hughes from the Aurora Education Foundation. An incredibly important conversation about Indigenous data sovereignty, and the notions of objectivity, independence, and the rights to our own data.
“There’s very much a strong culture within education of delegating out evaluation work to large consulting firms. I think a lot of that comes from this sense that doing so creates a level of independence in the evaluation that’s done, but of course when you’re paying the evaluator and directing them as to what to evaluate, the extent to which that’s independent is obviously undermined.”
“Particularly in the Indigenous context, We’re really keen to unpack this notion of research objectivity or independence. To make the point that the person who’s doing the evaluation/data analysis really brings their own social and cultural baggage to that question. So on that basis we’re trying to make the case that it’s important for Indigenous people to be leading that work. That argument is difficult to get across in certain settings.”
“Particularly within the education setting there’s a very strong preference for standardised data, and data that’s focused on predominately academic outcomes. There’s a large list of challenges that come along with that. Within the Indigenous context a lot of that data… doesn’t necessarily reflect the preferences or aspirations of Indigenous communities within education.”