Arcadia’s Indigenous Strategy aims to inspire change within the built environment

03 Jun 2022 | News

Arcadia is proud to share their Indigenous Strategy 2022-2030, the next important step in the firm’s company-wide vision for greater Indigenous inclusion in the built environment.  Since launching the first Landscape Architecture Scholarship for Indigenous Students in 2016, Arcadia has worked towards improving First Nations representation in the built environment.

“Landscape Architecture has the opportunity lead the built environment in the inclusion of knowledge and perspective of First Nations’ people for a better outcome in caring for Country. Our design discipline shares an alignment with First Nations thinking when it comes to caring for Country, with our botanical and material understanding. It is gratifying to see that other disciplines in the industry have similar goals and together we can work to inspire change within the built environment,” says Alex Longley, Founding Principal of Arcadia.

“At Arcadia, we are proud of the steps made to date. We recognise that there is a need to formalise a strategy in order to generate, measure and evaluate our actions towards Indigenous advancement in the built environment.”

The Arcadia Working Group has been working on the Indigenous Strategy since 2020, conducting internal research and workshops to identify three major tenets that will be used to drive decision-making for the Strategy: respect, community and advocacy, all steeped in principles of equality and equity. These tenets encompass the following:

  • Respect: building internal cultural literacy to inform practice and relationships
  • Community: nurturing and building relationships with Indigenous business, leaders, employees, communities and Country
  • Advocacy: Seeking and identifying opportunities for Indigenous advancement within the industry, on project work and internal operations.

“As a company, as practitioners and as individuals, we will work together to achieve the overarching goals we have set. For some goals, Arcadia is already on the journey – for others, we are keen to begin straightaway. The goals are inextricably linked – success in one area will feed positively into another with our strategy structured in a way that enables us to continually revisit and refine our targets as we make progress,” says Michael Barnett, Principal, Arcadia Landscape Architecture.

“We want to thank Kaylie Salvatori, first recipient of our Landscape Architecture Scholarship at UNSW and Arcadia’s first Indigenous Landscape Strategist. Kaylie worked with Arcadia for three years and in that time taught us so much, generously contributing to this strategy and to our studio capability. We look forward to continuing our relationship with Kaylie as she moves into the next stage of her career.”

Arcadia’s Indigenous Strategy can be viewed here.