Reshaping Rural Communities ‘at a Distance’: The Resource Boom, FIFO and Non-mining Towns

Rachel Chapman, Matthew Tonts, Paul Plummer

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference paperChapterpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Much of the research and commentary on fly-in/fly-out (FIFO) workforce practices focuses on workers who are resident in cities and commute to remote areas. Yet FIFO workers are not drawn solely from cities, with rural and regional communities also providing labour for remote operations. Indeed, the economies, demography and sociocultural characteristics of these communities, many of which have historically been based on industries such as agriculture and tourism , are being reshaped through extended spatial linkages created by FIFO workforce practices. This paper considers the residents’ perceptions of the implications of hosting a FIFO workforce on these non-mining rural communities and regional centres. Drawing on a Q-sort methodology, it examines how residents in three rural communities view the opportunities and challenges associated with this ‘at-a-distance’ engagement with the resource boom. It concludes by considering the regional development policy and planning implications associated with these emerging forms of commuting interdependencies.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationLabour Force Mobility in the Australian Resources Industry
Subtitle of host publicationSocio-Economic and Regional Impacts
EditorsFiona Haslam-McKenzie
Place of PublicationSingapore
Number of pages22
ISBN (Electronic)978-981-10-2018-6
ISBN (Print)978-981-10-2016-2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2016


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