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A New Paradigm: The Indian Country Economy A PowerPoint presentation by Alan Parker, faculty for Native Law & Policy The Evergreen State College, Olympia WA June 19, 2006 The Indian Country Economy: A New Paradigm

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a new paradigm the indian country economy
A New Paradigm: The Indian Country Economy

A PowerPoint presentation by Alan Parker, faculty for Native Law & Policy

The Evergreen State College, Olympia WA

June 19, 2006

the indian country economy a new paradigm
The Indian Country Economy:A New Paradigm
  • Webster’s defines an economy as:” …a system of producing, distributing and consuming wealth.”
  • Each Tribal Nation is responsible for designing its own tribal economy based on its own economic policies and strategies.
  • Tribal economies have much in common.
what is the indian country economy
What is the “Indian Country Economy”?
  • Indian Country Economy (ICE) = the collective resource base, production capabilities and service capacity in all of “Indian Country”.
  • Tribal sovereignty is used to give competitive advantage to tribal enterprises in the marketplace .
  • “Produced in Indian Country” is a brand label for some Indian Country products.
  • “Strategic Geographic Location” is a valuable asset and an economic resource of the ICE.
the tribal gaming example
The “Tribal Gaming” Example
  • Tribal Gaming is common to many tribal economies.
  • Tribal sovereignty creates the opportunity for tribal gaming.
  • Federal law requires tribal gaming enterprises be owned by the tribe.
  • Class III tribal gaming requires a state-tribal compact.

Pawnee Nation

Plans $100 Million

Casino Resort

what other elements are common to the indian country economy

Dakota Dunes opens in 2006

What other elements are common to the Indian Country Economy?
  • Tribal ownership means all tribal members have a stake in tribal economy.
  • “Natural” and “environment friendly” is associated with Native American products.
  • Tribal economic success = tribal political strength in the local and state “political economy.”
besides gaming what common resources make up the ice
Besides Gaming what common resources make up the ICE?
  • Indian Country regions = a distinctive mix of natural resources.
  • Pacific NW tribes have fisheries and timber.
  • Fossil fuel energy, wind and hydro are abundant in the Rockies.
  • Indian Agriculture base in mid-west = livestock and crops.
  • Southwest tribes location = broadband telecom. opportunities.
  • Tribal contracting preferences for government procurement.
are there common economic strategies among tribes
Are there common economic strategies among tribes?
  • Most sectors of ICE have created an intertribal support organization. (e.g., timber, agriculture, gaming, etc.)
  • The highest priority has been “job creation”
  • The next highest is diversification locally
  • Tribal independence is a strong tradition and there are few examples of tribal joint ventures.
  • Buy-Indian is not widely practiced by tribes
examples of joint business deals
Examples of joint business deals
  • Four Fires, LLC and Three Fires, LLC
  • Mohegan, Pequot, etc., intertribal investment in gaming.
  • Native American National Bank.
  • Alaska Native Regional Corporations.
  • More?


  • “A rising tide lifts all boats!”: Economically and politically.
  • Tribes with capital systematically invest in The Indian Country Economy (syndicates, mutual funds and Indian investment vehicles)
  • These investments offer competitive options for risk and reward.
  • Intertribal trade and investment puts tribal sovereignty to work
the new paradigm continued
The New Paradigm: continued
  • Tribes with common resources join together to access new markets.
  • Marketing cooperatives serve common sectors of ICE: access higher end markets
  • Tribal suppliers with strong management and quality control serve tribal retailers (casino-based food service enterprises, etc.)
what steps lead to the ice vision
What steps lead to the ICE vision?
  • Indian supplier – Indian buyer models - tribal buy-Indian policies.
  • Business research proves feasibility and multiplier effects
  • Business schools conduct “due diligence” and document economic values for each sector of the ICE
  • Financial instruments, programs and institutions need Indian expertise to serve tribal investors and enterprises
  • Tribal investment needed for research programs
the indian country economy

“The Indian Country Economy”

A Powerful vision

An emergent Reality

A realistic game plan for today and tomorrow!

Return to: http://www.indigenousnationstreaty.org/index_files/Page325.htm