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Referendum Council Consultation for the recognition in the Australian Constitution

Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet

Cox Inall Ridgeway was engaged by the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet to support the Referendum Council, to host digital consultations with the Australian community on the key options for constitutional reform.

This process involved undertaking face to face focus group testing with Indigenous and non Indigenous Australians across regional, remote and metropolitan centres, creating digital platforms to host conversations and developing digital content and strategies to engage and inspire Indigenous and non Indigenous Australians to share their views on constitutional reform. The process also involved managing all social and digital channels, continuously tracking and reporting on sentiment and drafting content for social engagement with community members.

In addition, CIR undertook online research to effectively benchmark and track sentiment across Indigenous and non Indigenous populations, to provide context to the conversation and determine how views may have changed during the consultation period.

The project was significant, as it was one of the first times the Australian Government had used social media platforms to engage nationally, to inform future thinking. The result was that close to 200,000 Australians engaged online with the question of constitutional reform between Feb-March 2017.

The purpose of the digital consultation period was to inform the Referendum Council’s report to the Prime Minister and Leader of the Opposition, on a way forward towards a potential referendum.

The culmination of this process resulted in the delivery of a final report to the Referendum Council, which included details of sentiment across each of the options for reform, analysis of data from social media conversation and online research and details of context for the conversation.

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