The evolving landscape of natural resource planning and governance in Australia

Vella, Karen & Sipe, Neil (2014) The evolving landscape of natural resource planning and governance in Australia. In Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning Conference, 30 October - 2 November 2014, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Unpublished)


Australia’s governance of land and natural resources involves multiple polycentric domains of decision-making from global through to local levels. Although certainly complex, these arrangements have not necessarily translated into better decision-making or better environmental outcomes as evidenced by the growing concerns over the health and future of the Great Barrier Reef, (GBR). However within this system, arrangements for natural resource management (NRM) and reef water quality, which both use Australia’s integrated regional NRM model, have showed signs of improving decision-making and environmental outcomes in the GBR. In this paper we describe the latest evolutions in the governance and planning for natural resource use and management in Australia. We begin by reviewing the experience with first generation NRM as published in major audits and evaluations. As our primary interest is the health and future of the GBR, we then consider the impact of changes of second generation planning and governance outcomes in Queensland. We find that first generation plans, although developed under a relatively cohesive governance context, faced substantial problems in target setting, implementation, monitoring and review. Despite this, they were able to progress improvements in water quality in the Great Barrier Reef Regions. Second generation plans, currently being developed, face an even greater risk of failure due to the lack of bilateralism and cross-sectoral cooperation across the NRM governance system. The findings highlight the critical need to re-build and enhance the regional NRM model for NRM planning to have a positive impact on environmental outcomes in the GBR.

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ID Code: 82615
Item Type: Conference Paper
Refereed: No
Additional URLs:
Keywords: Great Barrier Reef, Natural Resource Management, Planning, Governance, Evaluation, Australia
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > BUILT ENVIRONMENT AND DESIGN (120000) > URBAN AND REGIONAL PLANNING (120500) > Land Use and Environmental Planning (120504)
Divisions: Current > Schools > School of Civil Engineering & Built Environment
Current > Institutes > Institute for Future Environments
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Science & Engineering Faculty
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2014 [please consult the authors]
Deposited On: 19 Mar 2015 23:00
Last Modified: 19 Mar 2015 23:00

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