Most of Australia's geographical area is remote or very remote. Many parts of remote Australia are not incorporated into the area of a local government. For people in these areas, democratically elected and accountable local representation does not exist. How then are the local views of these people heard without bias and acted upon? This paper reviews the various institutional arrangements governing remote and unincorporated areas to reveal that while weak forms of representation exist they are far from being democratic, accountable and representative at the local level. As a second best solution to local and democratically elected government, this paper reviews available approaches for assessing the social, economic and environmental values held by people with a view to identifying those methods that may best work in remote and unincorporated Australia. The paper concludes that new methods are required based on a combination of remote sensing, participatory and integrated assessment approaches. The development of these new methods is area for future research.