One of the challenges of engaging in the Australian workplace is managing the different cultures that are present.
Whilst we attempted to map a single Australian identity, the reality is that Australian society is actually quite diverse. Understanding a little of Australia’s history will allow you to better appreciate the ‘Australian culture’ we have today. Select each of the history periods below to learn more:
First Nations People
Australia is home to the world’s longest surviving Indigenous cultures, with our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities having a history that dates back over 60,000 years. There is not one Aboriginal and Torres Islander culture, but instead Australia’s First Nations People were, and are, very diverse.
To find out more about Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and culture have a look at the Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies website.
In 1788, British colonialists, as part of the First Fleet, arrived in Australia marking the start of what can be known as the ‘Early Colonial Period’ of our history. Across Australia several British colonies were established which at the end of the 19th Century joined together to form the country of Australia, through what is known as Federation. To find out more about Federation, have a look at the Parliamentary Education Office website.
Modern Australia is comprised of a diverse, multicultural society that is the product of many decades of immigration. In Australia today, over 28% of Australians were born overseas. More than half of all Australians have at least one parent who was born overseas. Whilst the majority of these migrants come from the United Kingdom and New Zealand, there is an increasing number of migrants from countries such as Nepal, Pakistan, Brazil and India. For more information see the ABC's Understanding Australia website.
Understanding Australian Workplace Cultures: Understanding workplace cultures
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