Book your spot at the Australian Regional Development Conference!

The 3rd Australian Regional Development Conference is on again this September and will this year have a theme of ‘Regional Australia – Planning, Participation and Progress’ –  exploring opportunities for innovation in regional Australia. With its rich resources, diversity, and value, regional Australia is the catalyst for the future.

Attending the Australian Regional Development Conference this year so far, we have 24 local councils from throughout Australia along with representatives from 5 branches of Regional Development Australia.

Concurrent session themes include:

  • Agribusiness
  • Community Development
  • Digital Economies
  • Employment
  • Innovation
  • Investment
  • Land use Planning
  • Regional environmental sustainability
  • Sustainable Development and Urban Planning
  • Regional Tourism Development
  • Water

The conference will be held in Canberra on 5-6 September 2016 and is designed for individuals and representatives from organisations with an academic, business or professional interest in regional development.RD Small

Full registration will include all conference sessions and keynotes, morning teas, lunches, afternoon teas, conference dinner, conference materials including handbook and the on-line book of abstracts. It also includes access to the book of proceedings and presenter podcasts, post conference.

Click here to register for the conference today.

 

 

 

 

 

 

What Makes a Regional Business Successful?

What makes a regional business successful?  Why do some regional businesses succeed where others do not?   Is it luck, money, charm or dogged persistence?

Regional BusinessThe Australian Regional Development Conference brings together four successful regional business operators to share their stories of the road to success; and it’s not always a smooth ride.

From Greenock, SA, Kalleske Wines winner of the 2015 Telstra Small Business Award for innovation and industry leadership and Gold Award Winner 2015 Banksia Sustainability Awards  joins the Showcase along with Tony Kalleske who lives by the philosophy that “we are caretakers of the land”..

Recognising that skin cancer does not discriminate whether you live in the city or regionally, Jane Homberger co-founded Skin Smart Australia in Somerville, VIC. Winner of the 2015 Telstra Victorian Regional Business Award, Skin Smart brought skin cancer check-ups and molemap consultations to regional centres. The company’s  turnover increased almost ten-fold in its first three years.

Wagga Wagga local Dianna Somerville is Director of Regional Grants, Tenders and Corporate Services and is passionate about supporting the growth of regional entrepreneurs.  She’s seen it all from sporting clubs to local businesses.  Why do some get it so right and others so wrong?  Sharing what works and why, Dianna explores making regional businesses successful.

What Makes a Regional Business Successful?

Visit the The Australian Regional Development Conference website to view the full program.  Don’t miss out.  Registrations close in a few weeks.

State of the Regions report: Call for clearer long-term plan for regional development

regioanl development regionsThe authors of a report examining regional Australia says clearer, longer term policies are needed to grow country areas.

The State of the Regions report by National Economics, which was commissioned by the Australian Local Government Association, provides a snapshot of the economic health and make-up of the regions.

Part of the report outlines the need for a program of increased local government grants to lift national income and improve equality in the distribution of income as reported by Sarah Taillier.

National Economics’ deputy director Ian Manning said he hoped the major stakeholders were more strategic with their support.

Inequity in broadband access and internet speeds were also seen as a major hindrance for country areas trying to tap into the digital economy.

Dr Manning said the Government needed to drive more support in this area.

“Try and encourage greater amounts of investment in those kinds of things which help regional areas to compete with the cities or to get activities decentralised into them,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Australian Local Government Association said the major parties had not provided a clear plan on regional development. To read more click here.

The 3rd Australian Regional Development Conference; Participation and Progress will be held in Canberra on 5 – 6 September 2016 to register for the conference CLICK HERE.

The conference explores opportunities for innovation in regional Australia. With its rich resources, diversity, and value, regional Australia is the catalyst for the future.

Addressing issues such as sustainable development, environmental sustainability, land use, community development, investment, agribusiness and innovation it is an opportunity not to be missed.

Housing stress and homelessness worse in regional Australia

homelessness in regional australiaA Salvation Army report has found nearly 70 per cent of the charity’s clients are experiencing extreme housing stress, prompting calls for poverty to become a key election issue.

The Salvos have surveyed 1,600 clients, with the results showing that 68 per cent of respondents are using nearly two-thirds of their disposable income on housing, placing them in extreme housing stress.

The charity’s fifth annual Economic and Social Impact Survey identified those in regional areas as being particularly vulnerable.

Salvation Army spokesman Major Bruce Harmer said the problem needed more attention from the country’s politicians.

“We need our politicians at all levels to partner with us so we can improve the lot of so many Australians doing it tough,” he said.

“There’s a big impact on kids, with some 40 per cent saying they’d moved houses three times in 12 months.

“You know what kind of impact that having is on the education of those children?”

The survey also found that 86 per cent of clients went without basic items at times, and only one in five could afford medical treatment or medicine for their children.

Major Harmer said the results were disheartening.

“To think that kids are going without medication because Mum and Dad simply can’t afford to buy it,” he said. To read more click here.

The 3rd Australian Regional Development Conference; Participation and Progress will be held in Canberra on 5 – 6 September 2016 to register for the conference CLICK HERE.

The conference explores opportunities for innovation in regional Australia. With its rich resources, diversity, and value, regional Australia is the catalyst for the future.

Addressing issues such as sustainable development, environmental sustainability, land use, community development, investment, agribusiness and innovation it is an opportunity not to be missed.

Inconsistent distribution of funds means millions are missing

geelong unfair fundingAre regional stakeholders competing against metro areas that naturally have more resources to put together a stronger application more likely to receive funding?

Tens of millions of dollars in federal funding has been directed to Melbourne suburbs under a regional infrastructure fund as reported by Geelong Advertiser.

Analysis of approved projects shows that the National Stronger Regions Fund has bankrolled major developments in metropolitan areas.

More than $33 million has gone to suburbs in the Victorian capital, including $2.5m for a business and education hub in Sunshine, just 12km from the CBD.

Other grants have included $9m for an aquatic centre in Craigieburn and $5.5m for a town centre project in Melton.

It is a similar tale across the country, with $6 million directed towards infrastructure within 3km of the Brisbane CBD.

Geelong has received support for three projects through the first two rounds of funding, with a new aged care facility in Norlane receiving the bulk of the $7.47m directed to the city.

Application for the third round of funding has closed, with the next list of successful projects expected to be announced in coming months.

The Royal Geelong Yacht Club and Geelong City Bowls Club are among applicants from the region.

As part of our Fair Go campaign, the Geelong Advertiser is shining a spotlight on regional disadvantage as part of a co-ordinated Fair Go campaign with our sister papers across Australia.

A spokeswoman for Regional Capitals Australia said the list of approved projects had come as a shock.

“We strongly support the creation of regional funding because of the investment opportunity for infrastructure projects in regional capitals,” she said.

“However, after recipients from Round One were announced, we realised that regional stakeholders were competing against metro areas that naturally had more resources to put together a stronger application.”

“The NSRF is an example of the difficulty faced by regional Australia in funding infrastructure: lack of transparency and consistency.”

The spokeswoman said infrastructure was not consistently funded in Australia.

“Multiple levels of government handle soft and hard infrastructure under a plethora of different funding arrangements,” she said.

“The only predictable sources of funding for regional Australia are the Black Spot program and the Roads to Recovery program. To read more click here.

Regional funding will be discussed at The 3rd Australian Regional Development Conference; Participation and Progress which will be held in Canberra on 5 – 6 September 2016.

The conference explores opportunities for innovation in regional Australia. With its rich resources, diversity, and value, regional Australia is the catalyst for the future.

Addressing issues such as sustainable development, environmental sustainability, land use, community development, investment, agribusiness and innovation it is an opportunity not to be missed.

To register for the conference CLICK HERE.