Global Desert Opportunities on Show in the Centre


Some of the best minds, community entrepreneurs and business brains from the world’s deserts will gather at the Alice Springs Convention Centre from November 1-3 to share success stories, new insights and practical lessons.

The Desert Knowledge Symposium: Global Desert Opportunities is a rare opportunity to sample the expertise and creativity of desert regions, home to one sixth of humanity.

Coming at the end of the International Year of Deserts and Desertification and Australia’s Year of the Outback, the event will explore and showcase enterprises, innovations, business opportunities, science and technology solutions, culture and collective knowledge thriving in the global desert.

Over 60 national and international presenters will discuss new and innovative ways to do business in the desert and to manage and create sustainable livelihoods from natural and cultural desert resources.

Water and energy solutions for desert people, education and the desert knowledge economy, and the future of inland towns are also on the agenda.

Australian businesses will benefit from the event’s expo-style business showcase, providing an opportunity for desert enterprises and those wishing to do business in desert regions to network and promote their services and solutions globally.

Three hundred participants are expected for the two-day symposium which, according to conference organisers, the Desert Knowledge Cooperative Research Centre (CRC) and Desert Knowledge Australia, and will inject an estimated $100,000 into the local economy.

The event marks the half-way point in the seven-year life of the Desert Knowledge CRC, a research network linking Aboriginal and local knowledge with science and research training.

“I am excited about this chance to share our early research results with desert dwellers from around the globe, to learn from them and strengthen our links with the world-wide desert knowledge movement”, said Desert Knowledge CRC Managing Director, Jan Ferguson.

Desert Knowledge Australia builds networks and partnerships across borders in desert Australia and internationally, with sustainability, harmony and wealth-creation as its guiding values.

CEO of Desert Knowledge Australia, John Huigen said, “Desert people are smart, innovative and resourceful – they need to be. The symposium will provide many opportunities to learn from each other’s experience. For example, we recently completed a 21 month pilot-project that achieved excellent outcomes for many desert businesses. We’re keen to share what we learnt and to learn from the experience of others.”

Symposium sponsors are the Indigenous Land Corporation, the Commonwealth Dept. of Transport, and Regional Services and the Dept. of Environment and Heritage, Northern Territory Dept. of Business and Regional Development, Western Australian Dept. of Local Government and Regional Development, Imparja Television, Tourism Australia, Newmont Australia, the Alice Springs Town Council and Bellette Media.

More information and on-line registration: www.desertknowledge.com.au/symposium.

Media contacts:

Jan Ferguson, Desert Knowledge CRC, 08 89507162 or 0401 719 882

John Huigen, Desert Knowledge Australia, 08 8951 5563 or 0448 515 563

Elke Wiesmann, Desert Knowledge CRC, 08 8950 7142 or 0427 009 240