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Reconciliation Action Plan Australia

Adopting a framework to turn intentions into action
Since June 2020, Thoughtworks has been part of a movement in Australia working towards equity for First Nations Australians through a framework called a Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP). Devised by not for profit ‘Reconciliation Australia’, the framework aims to embed reconciliation and understanding of First Nations peoples. 


If you’ve ever been part of an Australian meeting or call, you may have witnessed a ceremony called an ‘Acknowledgement of country’. This is practiced to acknowledge that the meeting is taking place on the lands of the Aboriginal peoples of Australia.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples have experienced a long history of violent and racist colonization and dispossession. This lies at the heart of the many disparities still experienced by First Nations peoples today, in comparison with the wider Australian community. These include an over-representation in Australia’s prison system, lower life expectancy, and poorer education and employment outcomes. 


Incorporating welcoming and acknowledgement protocols into official meetings and events is just one way of recognizing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as the Traditional Owners of land, and showing respect. Reconciliation Action Plans are another method, one which aims to tackle access to education and employment in particular. By joining the RAP network, Thoughtworks became part of a movement where ‘organizations leverage their structures and diverse spheres of influence to support the national reconciliation movement’.  

“At its heart, reconciliation is about strengthening relationships between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and non-Indigenous peoples, for the benefit of all Australians.”  – Reconciliation Australia

Thoughtworks’ RAP focuses on two areas: 

  1. How we can contribute to closing the education gap (especially in technology) and the digital divide faced by First Nations peoples

  2. Using our expertise and assets to help create more tech-driven careers and opportunities for First Nations Australians in the world of work. 

Since instigating our RAP framework, we have made considerable progress:


  • Providing General Assembly funding for their Indigitek scholarship program 

  • Pro bono consulting for First Nations charities including CopWatch, Jila Language, and Tauondi College 

  • Sharing educational material and providing support for First Nations peoples during the Voice to Parliament referendum

  • Training Thoughtworkers in Australia, building empathy and helping form stronger relationships with First Nations Australians

  • Creating an eight-week internship for two First Nations students to work alongside Thoughtworkers, building skills to help them accelerate their careers after graduation.


While much has been achieved, there’s plenty more to be done, focusing on stronger relationships and deeper impact. You can find Thoughtworks’ plan on the RAP Australia website.

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