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Monday 26th – Wednesday 28th August, 2024 Karratha, Western Australia

A Vibrant Northern Australia

Join the decision makers driving Northern Australia to achieve its full potential.
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To keep our future bright, this conference brings us all together globally, nationally and from across the north.

As Northern Australians, we live in one of the world’s most dynamic regions. Preserving our way of life and making things even better means re-investing in ourselves and attracting both quality investment partners and passionate people from the south and across the globe. The current refresh of the Northern Australian Whitepaper gives us all a chance to bolster the entire investment pipeline, from local health capacity building right through to securing the closure and delivery of quality investments that move us forward. We’ll need to build resilience in the face of geostrategic change, climate risk and keep building positive models of northern reconciliation.




  • To conceptualise and strategise the three priority areas that have been set for the next five-year Northern Australia Action Plan: human capital, enabling infrastructure, and economic development and diversification.
  • To give a platform for individuals, policy makers, decision makers and businesses to gather in the one place and work together to create a strong and sustainable North - now, and in the future.
  • To share best practices, explore innovative concepts and facilitate meaningful connections to transform sector collaboration and communication.
  • To provide real solutions with applicable takeaways for all stakeholders as we walk into an exciting, yet challenging future for the region.

Here’s a snapshot of delegates you can connect with at DNA

DNA brings together Northern Australian businesses, industry, government and communities in the same space to discuss the important issues facing us all. Typically, we see delegates range from:

  • Managers and Departments Heads of Federal, State and Local Governments.
  • CEOs, Leaders and Managers
  • Indigenous Community Corporations and Leaders.
  • Local small business leaders and local industry associations.
  • Members from Chambers of business and commerce.
  • Non-government funded and government-funded bodies.
  • Leaders in both government departments and private sector industries attend, including:

Infrastructure and Trade 
Mining and Resources 
Tourism and Fisheries 
International relations  
Development Commissions 
Regional Development 
Planning and Environment 
Jobs and Employment 
Housing and Water Management 
Education, Health and Aged Care 

Yes! DNA is for you if you’re looking for…

  • Networking with the leaders and stakeholders in government, community and business in Northern Australia.
  • Up-to-date research and information on how we can make the North stronger and more cohesive.
  • Honest conversations around the strategic direction of the North, and what needs to happen now and in the future to see the vision fulfilled.

Networking – Information – Direction

Understand what the immediate and long term future direction means for the region, it’s people, businesses and for your place within it. Take this information back into your role, your organisation and your community.

As a delegate you receive:

  • Access to conference app
  • Printed conference materials
  • Over 10 hours towards CPD points
  • Your personalised certificate of attendance

Have a break away from your inbox + the fun stuff

Get ready to enjoy:

  • An exclusive welcome networking function with drinks, canapes and entertainment 
  • Full day conference catering package
  • A special gift for returning delegates
  • The chance to win awesome prizes
  • Other fun things for all delegates

Join us at DNA and connect with the people leading the way for a strong, connected, thriving Northern Australia.

What we’ll cover at DNA24

A Vibrant Northern Australia

The current refresh of the Northern Australian Whitepaper gives us all a chance to bolster the entire investment pipeline, from local health capacity building right through to securing the closure and delivery of quality investments that move us forward.
  1. First Nations Self Determination Drives Northern Development

    • Indigenous Leadership and Nation Building
    • Mobilising Economic Opportunity from Land, Sea and Water Rights
    • Genuine and Equity-Based Approaches to Development Partnerships
  2. Knowledge, Skills and Migration for Tomorrow's Success

    • Shaping a Dynamic Workforce and Nurturing Education for Northern Success
    • Indigenous Pathways to Education and Empowerment
    • Shaping Migration Momentum for a Dynamic Future
    • Digital Infrastructure, AI Opportunities and Cybersecurity
  3. Net Zero Horizons: Navigating Climate Risk and Decarbonisation

    • Derisking Investment Pathways for Decarbonised Development
    • Climate Compass: Climate and Environmental Challenges in Northern Australia
    • Energy Frontiers: Bio-energy, Hydrogen and Other Opportunities for Powering the North
  4. Mining and Beyond

    • The Key Role of Mining and Gas in Northern Australia’s Future
    • Unearthing Critical Mineral Opportunities for Sustainable Development
    • Building Strong First Nations Partnerships Through Mining
    • Preparing for the Future: Cradle to Grave Approaches in the Resources Sector
  5. North of North: Navigating Challenges and Seizing Opportunities in the Indo-Pacific Era

    • From One Way Trade to Two Way Relationships 
    • A Lead From First Nations Diplomacy 
    • Shaping the North’s Place in the Indo-Pacific 
    • Geostrategic Issues and Opportunities for the North
  6. Northern Investment Pipelines: Building Our Prosperity Through Strategic Investments

    • Refining Northern Australia’s Investment Pipeline
    • Infrastructure Odyssey: Enabling Infrastructure Foundations for the North
    • Small and Medium Business Drives Community Building
    • Redefining the Northern Narrative through Trade and Tourism
    • Attracting Investment in Research, Development and Innovation
  7. Nature Positive Futures: Nurturing Agriculture, Sustainability and Biosecurity in Northern Australia

    • Landscape Guardians: Traditional Owners and Pastoralists as Ecosystem Service Providers
    • What Bio-regional Planning, EPBC Reforms and Nature Positive Markets Mean for Northern Australia
    • Agriculture’s Proud Place in a Contested Northern Landscape
    • Innovations in Biosecurity for the National Good
  8. Place-Based Solutions: Crafting Northern-Focused Policies for Lasting Impact

    • Empowered Communities and Local Solutions
    • Art, Culture & Food: Building Great Places and Northern Lifestyles 
    • Health and Social Policies: Prioritising Well-being in Northern Australia's Development
    • Tailoring Place-Based Strategies to Meet the Unique Needs of Northern Australia
    • Inclusive Governance Models: Ensuring Local Representation and Participation Development

The DNA Committee

Prof. Allan Dale

Professor of Tropical Regional Development, Cairns Institute, JCU

John Coyne

Head of Northern Australia Strategic Policy Centre, Australian Strategic Policy Institute

Brendon Douglas
Brendon Douglas

Vice-President Governance and University Secretary, Charles Darwin University

Belinda Carlson

Creative Content, Cooperative Research Centre for Developing Northern Australia (CRCNA)

Matt Derlagen
Associate Director, Stakeholder Relations, NAIF



Angela Tomazos

Business Bank Executive, NAB Regional and Agribusiness for the Northern Territory

Kylie Porter

Chief Executive Officer, Greater Whitsunday Alliance (GW3)

Tahna Jackson

Environmental Project Officer. Northern Territory Farmers Association (Based in QLD)

Anthony Curro

Senior Project Manager – Water Security, CRC for Developing Northern Australia (CRCNA)

Brook Orr
Brook Orr

Director Northern Australia Universities Alliance (NAUA)

Prof. Hurriyet Babacan

Professorial Fellow, The Cairns Institute, James Cook University; Chair Regional Development Australia, Tropical North

Casey Greentree

A/g Assistant Secretary, Office of Northern Australia 

Terry Hill
Terry Hill

Chair of the Pilbara Development Commission Board

John Acres

Manager Office of the Deputy Director General, Industry and Economic Development Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development

Register Now

$ 1,399 + GST


Early Bird

  • All keynote presentations
  • All concurrent presentations
  • Discounted accommodation rates
  • Access to conference app
  • Full day conference catering package
  • Access to exclusive networking functions
  • Printed conference materials
  • Over 10 hours towards CPD points
  • Your personalised certificate of attendance
  • Exposure for your organisation
  • Plus, chances to win great prizes!

 * Tours and dinner are an additional cost.

What People are Saying


“Overall, an excellent conference. My first time attending and so refreshing (typically I have attended very technical conferences). My attention was maintained, I felt like everything I attended was of interest and I had the knowledge and strategic 'literacy' to understand and value the conversations. Loved it!”

“Great topics and speakers, session breakouts, venue, networking opportunities & location”.

“Such a well-curated and crafted program, exploring a broad range of issues. The opportunity for a someone as curious as myself to listen and learn was invaluable”.

“It offered a great variety of speakers and subjects, in both long and short sessions. Really appreciated the diverse offerings - helps to keep things interesting over the two and a half days”.

“Excellent topics. Thought provoking. Interesting to see the evolution of topics over the years”.

“Good variety of topics and speakers. Reasonable opportunities to meet and discuss with others. Attracts very high quality delegates as well as speakers”.

“The whole conference was very insightful. It would have been great to have more health presentations”.

“Lots of great networking opportunities and thoughtful discussions”.



Monday 26th – Wednesday 28th August, 2024

DNA 2024 will be held at:
Red Earth Arts Precinct


Room Rates

Aspen Karratha Village   
Motel Room (30)  $240

Ibis Styles   
Standard Room with Queen Bed  $410
Standard Room with Queen Bed & Single Bed $425

Karratha International  
Superior Room including Breakfast  $489
Karratha Central Apartments  
Studio  $219
Apartment $245



Image: Karratha International




Logo Woodside

Gold & Lanyard Sponsor

Mackay Regional Council

Luncheon Sponsor


APP Sponsor


Dinner Sponsor

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