Collaboration in action at Agency & Assurance Expo

25 Feb 2019
News | “To have had all councils and so many state agencies in the same room sharing important ideas has been a real game changer.” That’s how Eastern City District and North District Commissioner Dr Deborah Dearing described the Agency & Assurance Expo, hosted by the Greater Sydney Commission over two days in February.

The Expo brought together state government agencies and councils from across Greater Sydney to help better align state and local strategic planning.

With over 120 council attendees, and 80 representatives from 10 state government agencies, the Expo showcased collaboration in action. Attendees took part in masterclasses on social, economic and environmental planning matters and had one-on-one consultations with state agencies, allowing councils a valuable opportunity to exchange information and discuss innovations in planning and best practice.

For councils, the Expo was an opportunity to gain a deeper understanding of the assurance requirements for the draft Local Strategic Planning Statements they will exhibit to communities later this year. The event also served to support skill development and capacity building in local government, with the Commission, councils and state agencies taking a ‘community of practice’ approach.

The Expo was a new approach for collaborative engagement and the breaking down of agency silos. It provided a platform for councils and state agencies to share information and work together with a common goal of achieving quality outcomes for communities. It supports the development of a strong evidence base to respond to the District Plans, incorporating localised considerations.

In her closing remarks Dr Dearing commended the unprecedented collaboration and information sharing between local and state government during the Expo.

 “Not only has it been a demonstration of how we can work differently and work better, it’s been a critical step in the assurance process,” Dr Dearing said.

Information collected over the two days will be used to inform the Commission’s assurance program supporting Council’s draft Local Strategic Planning Statements.

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