The summit, held in July of this year, united regional leaders from government, industry and education to develop a shared vision for Melbourne’s North as well as more effective strategic partnerships and regional planning.
Acting Vice-Chancellor of La Trobe University, Professor Keith Nugent, said the summit report [PDF 2.7MB] provided a clear direction for the future of Melbourne’s North with region-wide and theme-specific recommendations.
‘The summit report strongly shows that in order for the North to remain competitive, there is a real need for local government, business, industry and other key stakeholders to work as one to drive and develop a regional plan to benefit the whole region,’ Professor Nugent said.
‘NORTH Link, the Northern Melbourne RDA Committee and the seven local governments representing the area will play an important role in further developing and implementing the recommendations of the summit report.’
The summit recommended the establishment of a Melbourne’s North Research Foundation that would provide regional data aggregated across all Local Government Areas; evidence based establishment and monitoring of key benchmarks (economic, environmental, social and cultural); issues papers and research-led discussions on challenges and best practice applicable to Melbourne’s north.
Regional ICT and Technology Hub
The summit also recommended the establishment of a Northern Regional ICT Hub that would be underpinned by collaboration between business and government. It was agreed that Melbourne’s North has existing infrastructure and service providers to enable the region to lead technological innovation in each of the Summit theme areas.
Melbourne’s North Branding
The summit supported the differentiation of Melbourne’s north through the development of an iconic brand and marketing campaign, which would focus on the region’s pride, core strengths and changing dynamic. This would create a strong regional identify for the region.
Chair of NORTH Link, Mr Chris Heysen, said the Summit report provided a rich menu of recommendations that would help shape and determine the future direction and priorities of the region.
‘The summit focused on key issues facing the region today, providing a timely opportunity for the exchange of ideas and insights into the region’s future, and exploring options for cooperative action on a regional basis,’ Mr Heysen said.
The Melbourne’s North: Now and Tomorrow Summit Report also provided recommendations under the Summit’s seven key theme areas of:
- Growing Business and Industry, and Fostering Innovation
- Promoting Education and Developing Human Capital
- Building a Healthy Community
- Fostering the Arts and Culture
- Transport and Infrastructure for the Future
- Securing Environmental Sustainability
- Stimulating the Digital Economy
Chair of the Northern Melbourne RDA Committee, Mr Bob McQuillen, said the report had received the endorsement of the CEOs of the seven local governments.
‘Developing a shared vision for Melbourne’s North is a big job requiring all stakeholders and governments at every level to work together. It is pleasing that there is such willingness for regional collaboration,’ Mr McQuillen said.
Suzi Macbeth, Media and Communications Officer: T + 61 3 9479 5353 | E firstname.lastname@example.org