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Small towns can make a difference

  • Year: 2002
  • Author: Bandaranaike, Suniti
  • Journal Name: 2020 vision: Australia's demographic future: Australian Population Association 11th Biennial Conference
  • Publisher: Australian Population Association
  • Published Location: Acton, ACT
  • Country: Australia
  • State/Region: Queensland

This paper argues for the relevance of social sustainability in the sustainable futures of rural Australia. The research is based on interviews conducted in small towns in Queensland and on current census data, and incorporates the concepts of social capital and social cohesion. It is argued that small towns have the potential to contribute to addressing Australia's low fertility, high ageing population and future productivity. The research concludes that human enterprise and initiative can prevail over rural adversity and that small town sustainability is a realistic option.

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