The March Regional Development and Mining short course attracted 19 participants from nine countries in Asia and Africa. The representatives were from governments, academic institutions and civil society.
The course focused on regional development and regional governance and how communities can enhance the economic and social aspects of mining. Participants examined regional investment, employment generation, enterprise development, local firm integration into resource projects, infrastructure and service deployment, landholder management and regional governance.
Participants visited Perth, Kalgoorlie and Esperance, where they were able to compare and contrast approaches, successes and shortfalls in Australian regional development, with experience in their home countries. They met with business representatives, academics, state and local government officials, community representatives and infrastructure operators to discuss the issues.
Participants noted that while there has been considerable success in leveraging the economic impacts of mining into regional development, Australian stakeholders were open in sharing how local growth and sustainable benefits could be improved.
Workshop discussions at UWA and in the field linked regional development theory with the practicalities of application.