"This paper is intended to guide network discussions by identifying an initial set of issues which arise from the academic literature on urban Aboriginal communities. The paper is organized around a series of contexts that confront those as they work to develop their economies, participate in the wage economy, and develop a business sector. These include the socio-demographic context, the jurisdictional context, the policy context, the institutional context and the program context.
"This paper addresses the challenges and opportunities urban environments represent for urban Aboriginal economic development. About one quarter of reserves are located within or contiguous to the boundaries of urban areas. Reserve residents experience different legal regimes and government structures than most urban Aboriginal residents, and they are not the focus here. Instead, the focus is on urban Aboriginal people living off reserves in urban areas. The paper begins with some background material that presents the framework for organizing the analysis.
"In October of 2008, the National Network for Urban Aboriginal Economic Development held a National Gathering to identify the next steps in the development of the Network. One critical issue identified in those discussions was the need to ensure a dedicated focus on Aboriginal women in urban areas. The participants recognized that Aboriginal women face particular barriers in becoming active members of the workforce, and in starting up and sustaining business enterprises. Members of the Network identified two key points.