Meet Indigenous Professionals from Around the World
Expand Your Network
Relationships are our tradition.
Indigenous Peoples have been trading internationally for millennia.
Connection is the foundation for international trade.
Our Virtual Exchanges are a way for Indigenous Professionals to meet and work together without having to step on a plane.
Each cohort consists of incredibly motivated, ambitious, and innovative Indigenous Professionals and change-makers, who work together during a six-week period to develop Thought Leadership and public policy recommendations.
Together we embrace our traditional ceremonies, find commonalities, explore social and economic challenges, and identify opportunities to engage in international trade.
Most importantly, strong, long-lasting relationships are developed, relationships that transcend borders and internet connections.
Who can apply?
We invite all Indigenous Professionals and change-makers to apply to our program.
Our inaugural exchange consisted of professionals from Canada and New Zealand, and in February 2021 included Fiji. In September 2022, we invited Indigenous Professionals from Australia to join our exchange. Even if you are not from any of these countries, we encourage you to apply! We review all applications submitted.
To join our Virtual Exchange, all delegates must commit to attending all of the six planned meetings and actively contribute to generating the final report.
As part of the onboarding process, we publish a Welcome Handbook, which will help you to get to know the others in your cohort before our first meeting.
Once admitted to the program, you will be asked to submit a high-resolution photo and short bio (< 200 words) to be included in the handbook.
Take a look at the bios of our previous delegates here.
Your cohort of global Indigenous Professionals will meet each week via Zoom. We will open each meeting with ceremony and some words from our Elders.
The format of the meeting each week is slightly different, but you will be sent an agenda beforehand so you will know what to expect.
By the second week of the program, delegates will split themselves into groups of 3 - 5 to discuss a topic of mutual interest. These small groups will meet in breakout rooms to share knowledge and experiences, and discuss issues that are important to them.
This is where the real magic of INDIGI-X happens.
Through this informal but important platform for connection, similarities are discovered, as are differences, and learnings are quickly found that can be of great benefit to Indigenous well-being, development, and commerce.
Each group will settle on a mutually agreed upon topic of interest and outline the key issues, challenges, and recommendations as a multi-national group of Indigenous Professionals.
We leave the topics of interest entirely up to you. We know that government and industry often have their own agendas when engaging with Indigenous people. Therefore, we want to leave it up to you to determine what your group is interested in and the recommendations you wish to put forward.
Previous groups have looked at everything from e-commerce to clean energy and fisheries - the sky is the limit.
After five weeks of weekly meetings, we will host a 2.5-hour session where all groups will have 20 minutes to present their work.
In the weeks leading up to the final presentations, we will work with you to identify the key stakeholders we should invite to the meeting.
Past attendees have included Minister Nanaia Mahuta (former New Zealand Minister of Māori Development), Minster Carolyn Bennett (Canada’s former Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations), as well as a number of other government, industry, and community members.
The final presentations are both a celebration of what the cohort was able to accomplish in the preceding five (short!) weeks as well as a demonstration of the power of Indigenous collaboration.
Still curious? We have recordings of past presentations on our YouTube channel.
We know Indigenous Professionals are all too often expected to do additional work and provide insights for free. However, our time and insights are valuable.
INDIGI-X endeavors to ensure delegates are recognized for the time and effort they dedicate to the program. Upon completion of the program and submission of the final report, an honorarium will be provided to each delegate who completes the exchange.
Many groups choose to arrange their own meetings in addition to the weekly group-wide ones. We encourage this - there is a lot of work to do and great friendships develop as a result.
Feedback from our first cohort was that they felt energized, uplifted, and an increased sense of pride in themselves and their communities. A deep sense of trust developed very quickly among members of the group and a number of long-term friendships and business relationships exist because of the program.
Hear some of the feedback we received from our alumni here.