HORSCATSIAHouse of Representatives Standing Committee on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Affairs (Australia)
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Foremost among these was an opportunity for papers, most later submitted to the HORSCATSIA Review, to be publicly presented and peer assessed.
Simultaneously, from March to June, HORSCATSIA conducted its hearings, where many of the published submissions from academics were debated and cross-examined and a transcript of all hearings recorded by Hansard for the public record.
But an analysis of the presentations and publications made both to the Reeves Inquiry and to HORSCATSIA indicate tedious revisiting and attempted simplification of complex issues, a form of forensic anthropology where researchers had to be careful not to get caught out in cross-examination.
Somewhat paradoxically, and a little inexplicably, just four months after completion of the Reeves Review, HORSCATSIA was asked to report on Reeves by the same minister, another political act.
HORSCATSIA recognised quickly that the Reeves model had little support and very little policy merit, and here academic input in submissions and in evidence before the committee did have some influence.
Ultimately, it is probably a fair assessment that independent and objective academic research had no influence in the Reeves Inquiry (although the very fact that this research was shown to be ignored served the purpose of exposing the review as at best incompetent, at worst biased), but considerable influence on the HORSCATSIA Inquiry.
Indeed, if independent and high-quality research influenced HORSCATSIA, as it undoubtedly did, it is still far from clear what the political response to this report's recommendations will be.