Harbinger Consultants

Culture + Complexity + Change

2011 | It begins

Building on our successes of 2010, we’re back on board with many projects in the pipeline for 2011. Initially, we’re working on placemaking projects for the ULDA’s Fitzgibbon, Brisbane, and Oonoonba, Townsville, public art programming and planning. Our other projects include partnerships in the areas of placemaking, cultural development, stakeholder engagement and enterprise development.

This year opened with devastating floods in Brisbane and while we were physically/geographically unaffected by that event, we were horrified to learn that 75% of the state of Queensland was declared a disaster zone. It was the worst flood to hit Brisbane since the 1974 flood. We were also overwhelmed by the volunteer response that saw thousands of people pitching in to clean up homes, streets and businesses. Linda has written a lengthy piece about the unfolding of the event and some initial responses to it as part of her Placing project. This event will occupy our thoughts for many years to come as we aim to participate in recovery efforts, including offering perspectives on communications and stakeholder engagement.

The Premier’s Disaster Relief Appeal has been launched to help Queenslanders affected by these floods. At the time of writing, well over $130 million had been donated. Other information about the flooding is available on a State Government website.

We’ve noted that reports and commentaries about the flooding pose several questions about the ongoing response and the need for ongoing conversations, particularly those hard to have conversations. We truly understand that conversations matter especially where those conversations can develop informed decision making. Disaster recovery is a time for concerted and purposeful stakeholder engagement. Those commentators have called for conversations on a broad range of issues including climate change, urban resilience, urban form and settlement patterns, relocalisation, environmental health, rebuilding, sustainability, waste management, disaster readiness, insurance, infrastructure, social media etc. The Inquiry, announced by the Premier, will provide opportunities for public participation. With flooding affecting several states, we can imagine a rolling series of civic conversations that support and extend the work of the Inquiry. Such conversations play a role in revitalising our civic culture as well as play a role in building capacity in relation to some of these important community, cultural and urban development issues. Capacity building in the face of change and threat is a vital dimension of resilience and urban systems.



  pipsky wrote @

HI Linda
really appreciated your writing on the floods and agree wholeheatedly with your political observations – good to reflect with Harbinger as well on the whole picture not just the cultural aspects cheers Jude Pippen

  lcarroli wrote @

Thanks so much Judy. I very much appreciate that you stay in touch with our work … I hope there will be much more reflection about this event and that the challenges it poses can bring us to better ways of living and sharing. Political will often seems to be the stumbling block … Also, I didn’t realise that you too had taken up blogging … Checking out your blog imminently. Cheers, Linda

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