The Missing Workers

The Missing Workers:
Locally led migration strategies to better meet rural labour needs

In 151 regional Local Government Areas (LGAs) across the country, the numbers of overseas-born residents are increasing, while the number of Australian-born residents is decreasing.

Population loss means there are still labour shortages in rural Australia. This loss requires new strategies to enable migration to better meet local labour needs.

One way to tackle this issue is through locally-led migration strategies. Support for these projects across rural Australia is key to future population and economic growth in small towns.

Supported by literature and analysis from the Regional Australia Institute (RAI), this policy paper is based on discussions between regional settlement representatives at Migration Nation, a RAI roundtable event held at Old Parliament House on 1 November 2017 as well as consultations with governments and community groups.

Read the full paper here.

Read the policy paper here:

More Migrants For Small Towns:
Community Narratives

Map: Community Narrative locations

A handful of rural towns across Australia have found a solution to population decline and workforce shortages – and now the Regional Australia Institute (RAI) says it’s time the rest of the country gets on board.

The RAI  has been working with communities across the country to find out how they have implemented locally-led regional migrations strategies. We have looked at their migration progress,  the lessons they have learned and the challenges they know face.

Below are the stories from across Australia. These community narratives will give you an insight into what is already happening around the country and how rural towns are coming together to welcome migrants from across the globe.


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Bendigo and Adelaide Bank logo
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Click on the images to read each narrative:

Community narrative interviews

We asked three people about their town’s experience with migration and the impact it has had.