Choice modelling: An approach to quantify intangible non-market values for native title compensation?

Thursday, 7 June 2018
Kaely Woods
Patricia Riley

The question of how to determine appropriate native title compensation has challenged western notions of land valuation. In the first court determination of compensation, the Federal Court held that the special value of the land, over and beyond market value, needed to recognise the intense bond between Indigenous people and country. Translating the impact of disruption of the unique nature of the spiritual link between the people and land into monetary terms presents many challenges and the judge acknowledged his reliance on intuition in making such a determination of non-economic loss.
Working with Nyikina and Mangala people, Kaely sought to apply mechanisms previously used to quantify intangible values of the environment, health and wellbeing to non-market cultural values. In the initial phase of her research, people identified access to traditional country as highly valued, and this attribute of cultural maintenance was included in choice modelling embedded in a subsequent survey. The results from the choice modelling confirm that this attribute is most highly valued.
Patricia will speak about how access to country is critical to cultural maintenance and Kaely will present some of the findings that may inform future consideration of approaches to valuing native title compensation.