12th May, 2003
Facilitator: The workshop was facilitated by Dr Helen Cheney, Senior Research Fellow, Institute for Sustainable Futures, University of Technology, Sydney.
The Institute for Sustainable Futures (ISF) was established by the University of Technology, Sydney in 1996 to work with industry, government and the community to develop sustainable futures through research, consultancy and training. Sustainable futures result from economic and social development that protects and enhances the environment, human well-being and social equity.
Aims of the Workshop
Panel and small group discussion
Small group discussion
Summary and outcomes of the day
APPENDIX A — PRESENTATIONS
APPENDIX B — PARTICIPANTS
APPENDIX C —FINDINGS OF THEMATIC GROUPS
There is a diverse range of social and economic research taking place within the Bowen Basin area of Central Queensland. This research may relate directly to mining, such as impact assessment for particular development proposals, or it may be focused on social issues or trends within mining communities. Discussions between researchers and staff within the Department of the Premier and Cabinet led to a proposal that a workshop be held to find out more about this area of research.
The workshop was coordinated by the Community Engagement Division of the Department of the Premier and Cabinet and an invitation was made to researchers involved in current and potential studies of social/economic issues affecting mining dependent or semi-dependent communities in the Bowen Basin. In response many researchers were keen to present their research for discussion. The workshop was well attended by researchers, government personnel and representatives for the mining industry.
The workshop format was more formal in the first part of the day, with researchers providing a brief presentation, followed by questions and discussion. The second part of the day began with a panel giving reflections on the morning and then small groups worked on a number of different themes. Arising from a discussion of future directions for social and economic research in the Bowen Basin the potential for a research network to be developed was identified and agreed upon. There was a need to find ways to share results of research and collaborate on projects.
The potential for funding opportunities was also discussed.
- Provide an opportunity to exchange professional views and information on research studies affecting mining dependent or semi dependent communities in the Bowen Basin area of Central Queensland.
- Identify current and prospective research into social or economic issues affecting Bowen Basin Mining Communities.
- Seek collaborations, co-ordination and alignment of research efforts.
- Develop possible protocols for researchers in the area.Identify and minimise duplication amongst research projects where feasible
- Understanding Knowledge, Justice and Change in Sustainable Development in Regional Communities by Fiona Solomon and Evie Katz, CSIRO Minerals.
- The Economic and Social Impacts of the Coppabella Mine on Nebo and the Mackay Region by John Rolfe and Stewart Lockie, Centre for Social Science Research, Central Queensland University.
- Study Findings – Youth Suicide Prevention & Social Capital in the Mackay Region by Helen Waite, Queensland Centre for the Prevention of Domestic and Family Violence, Central Queensland University.
- Wellbeing of Women and Children in Mining Communities in the Bowen Basin by Susan Rees, Queensland Centre for the Prevention of Domestic and Family Violence, Central Queensland University.
- Population Trends and Socio-economic Characteristics of Bowen Basin Communities by Ross Barker & Alison Taylor, Planning Information and Forecasting Unit, Department of Local Government and Planning.
- Developing Social Indicators for Mining Associated Communities by David Brereton, Centre for Social Responsibility, The University of Queensland.
- BTRE – Regional Centres Project by Kerry Laughton, Bureau of Transport and Regional Economics.
- ACMER projects relevant to Sustainable Mining in the Bowen Basin by Owen Nichols, Australian Centre for Mining Environmental Research.
- Priorities in the area of Social Research – ACARP in 2003 by John Merritt, Anglo Coal, ACARP Representative.
A Panel gave critical reflections and feedback on the presentations including impressions, potential for collaboration and co-operation and identified gaps in social and economic research. The members of the Panel were:
- Mr Roger Wischusen, Manager, Australian Coal Association Research Program (ACARP)
- Ms Lisa Pollard, Principal Policy Officer, Innovation Unit, Department of Communities
- Mr Keith Barker, Queensland Mining Council
- Professor Bob Miles, Institute for Sustainable Regional Development, Central Queensland University
- Ms Fiona Martin, Office of Regional Development, Department of State Development
Mr Roger Wischusen, Manager, Australian Coal Association Research Program (ACARP):
- It is obvious that a large amount of important research is being conducted and there is perhaps a bit of duplication.
- The group seems to want to achieve a partnership and if this happens it will be a major accomplishment.
- However he feels that researchers and mining companies will find it difficult to ever really work together.
- Gaps in the research need to be addressed and ACARP are willing to help with that.
Ms Lisa Pollard, Principal Policy Officer, Innovation Unit, Department of the Premier and Cabinet:
- There are issues of how to connect and work with people.
- Key themes of the workshop have been mine closure and the effects on the community.
- There is a need to use information for social indicators and carefully analyse the results.
- We need to look at key areas of commonality and what everyone thinks would be fair in managing and clarifying expectations.
- Discussion on involving the coal industry in research through case studies.
- There are global industry links, what comparative research links are there?
Mr Keith Barker, Queensland Mining Council :
- Workshop a great success. There seems to be a lot of people researching a lot of topics but there is a need for better planning. How does this region differ from others? Is the problem unique to mining or is it a part of broader problems?
- Bowen Basin should be planning for the future instead of looking at the past.
- A true partnership with State Government, Local Government and the community needs to be developed.
- Look at other regional planning that is already in place and consider how we can use something that already exists eg WHAM 2015 & CQ ANM.
- We need to put in the structure of where we want to go and concentrate on the future.
- Facilitating change and whole of life planning and extending communities past the 40 year life of mining.What role does the Government play, what does the mining company play or is it a social economic issue?
- Must look at what funds that we have collectively and how can it best be spent.
- Bowen Basin region provides royalties to Government but basic services are apparently not available. Where is the money going?
Professor Bob Miles, Institute for Sustainable Regional Development, Central Queensland University:
- Mining industry is very committed to work in health and safety and the industry is aware of on and off-site external safety.
- The overall social environment is important in achieving this.
- The industry is reluctant to be dictating to the workforce what they can do away from work.
- Possibility this is a reason why there is a reluctance to take on such research.
- Industry is keen to understand changes and is looking for assistance from the researchers.
- The industry expects a very long future and wants to plan for the future.
- Communication is very important.
- Comment from the Mayor that Emerald has not really had such a hard time of it and suggests that diversity has a lot going for it and should think about how we can diversify in this area.
Ms Fiona Martin, Office of Regional Development, Department of State Development :
- Praised the project and identified a need to integrate this research.
- Identified economic synergies from the mining industry, such as supply chains and jobs for local businesses and the need for industry partnerships, education and training.
In consultation with Workshop participants a number of thematic areas were suggested. The groups were asked to examine four key questions relevant to these themes; what they would take away? links? understandings? and next steps? The following topics were suggested as a starting point for group discussion:
- impacts assessment
- issues of change and regional development
- specific individual projects; economic diversification
- the jigsaw of people, projects and funding
- how to make strategic links: and ACARP and industry funding.
In addition to the valuable discussion and development of relationships on the day, the most significant outcome from the workshop was the establishment of a Bowen Basin Research Network. A group was formed to coordinate the network and to act on a number of suggestions made by the group. These included the establishment of a website containing details of both past and current relevant research projects and an email list. It was agreed that the network would be informal and focused on research related to the region.
It was also suggested that a second forum be held in order to build on the activity of the "Positive Futures in Mining Communities" held in Moranbah in November 2000. Another suggestion was that an annual planning meeting be held for researchers. Both the forum and future meetings could also be an opportunity for the research network to meet again and continue developing the ideas discussed at this workshop. These included:
- the need to identify and agree on research priorities to reduce any overlap in research activities
- to further understanding of social and economic research
- to continue dialogue with industry
- to assist government with regional planning
- and to explore research partnerships and funding options.
A number of significant research gaps were also identified. These include:
- health issues related to an ageing workforce
- ethnographic studies of mining communities
- links between social issues and mining community industry patterns such as work/home commuting.
In the final exercise all participants provided their reflections and feedback on the day:
Owen Nichols: Companies struggle to decide what are the financial priorities of small communities and it would be appreciated if there were policies or guidelines to assist with these decisions.
Lisa Pollard: Asked to make a time to meet for the network group.
Stewart Lockie: Felt the work discussed today has been beneficial to make sure the research is used.
John Merritt: How to take it forward from today to include ACARP?
Janet Benson: Good connections, which will be further developed through the website. One cannot work in isolation and there is a need to connect and form partnerships.
Stephen Schwarten: Hopes that all participants keep the commitments made at this forum and he will continue to liaise with local government and the community in the region.
Lynda Herbert-Cheshire: Positive.
Patrick Noonan: Positive.
Helen Waite: Really worthwhile, new opportunities, new problems to address and let's get started.
Susan Rees: Positive and has learnt a lot which will enhance her research.
Ross Barker: Need to work collaboratively.
Alison Taylor: Echo Stewart's view. It is always good to have people appreciate what you (PIFU) do and the importance of it confirmed and the need for a wider audience to be given the information as well. Would like to see a repeat forum like Moranbah. I am now convinced that this research is very important.
Roger Wischusen: Emphasised the strength of this work and liked the breakdown of isolated positions and the sharing of views that occurred during the day.
John Morris: Fantastic, will be in touch with John (ACARP) and will work closer with the whole of this group and the community in this region.
Rhys Worrall: Great enthusiasm and looks forward to the network being established.
Jim Grundy: Useful exercise, from this, it can only get stronger.
Gail Kelly: Looking forward to reflecting on the similarities of the issues raised. The desire and the need to work more closely.
Fiona Solomon: Quality of the discussion has been so good. The outcomes have been excellent.
Evie Katz: Gained a lot as not a local. Relieved to see they are not duplicating and looks forward to sharing information.
Bill Higham: The region warrants this attention. . The challenges are to pick up this amazing amount of work, to look at it and apply it. Progress this and continue with it. Looking for the project team to progress on behalf of everybody.
Frank Gilbert: Ownership of the network is about to be created. There is a need to show the community of mining communities good deliberation, communication and engagement. Look forward to the possibility of holding another future search style conference similar to Moranbah
1. Understanding Knowledge, Justice and Change in Sustainable Development in Regional Communities by Fiona Solomon and Evie Katz, CSIRO Minerals
2. The Economic and Social Impacts of the Coppabella Mine on Nebo and the Mackay Region by John Rolfe and Stewart Lockie, Centre for Social Science Research, Central Queensland University.3.
Study Findings Youth Suicide Prevention & Social Capital in the Mackay Region by Helen Waite, Queensland Centre for the Prevention of Domestic and Family Violence, Central Queensland University.
4. Wellbeing of Women and Children in Mining Communities in the Bowen Basin by Susan Rees, Queensland Centre for the Prevention of Domestic and Family Violence, Central Queensland University.
5. Population Trends and Socio-economic Characteristics of Bowen Basin Communities by Ross Barker & Alison Taylor, Planning Information and Forecasting Unit, Department of Local Government and Planning
6. Developing Social Indicators for Mining Associated Communities by David Brereton, Centre for Social Responsibility, The University of Queensland.
7. BTRE - Regional Centres Project by Kerry Laughton, Bureau of Transport and Regional Economics.
8. ACMER projects relevant to Sustainable Mining in the Bowen Basin by Owen Nichols, Australian Centre for Mining Environmental Research.
9. Priorities in the area of Social Research - ACARP in 2003 by John Merritt, Anglo Coal, ACARP Representative.
|Dr||Neil||Paulsen||Lecturer||School of Business, University of Queensland|
|Dr||Fiona||Solomon||Research Fellow||CSIRO Minerals|
|Dr||Evie||Katz||Social Scientist||CSIRO Minerals|
|Mr||Rhys||Worrall||Scientific Officer||Exploration and Mining Division|
|Dr||Gail||Kelly||Urban & Regional Futures CSIRO||CSIRO Sustainable Ecosystems, Gungahin|
|Dr||Stewart||Lockie||Director Centre for Social Science Research||Central Queensland University|
|Assoc Prof.||Helen||Waite||Senior Research
Queensland Centre for the Prevention of Domestic & Family Violence
|Central Queensland University|
Queensland Centre for the Prevention of Domestic & Family Violence
|Central Queensland University|
|Prof||Bob||Miles||Executive Director Institute for Sustainable Regional Development||Central Queensland University|
|Prof.||David||Brereton||Director Centre for Social Responsibility in Mining||University of Queensland|
|Dr||Lynda||Herbert-Cheshire||Post Doctoral Research Fellow School of Social Science||University of Queensland|
|Dr||Owen||Nichols||Research Program Manager Australian||Centre for Mining Environmental Research (ACMER)|
in Regional Economic Development
Faculty of Business and Law & Centre for Environmental Management
|Central Queensland University|
|Mr||Ross||Barker||Manager||Planning Info & Forecasting Unit, Dept Local Govt & Planning|
|Ms||Kerry||Laughton||Researcher||Bureau of Transport & Regional Economics|
|Ms||Alison||Taylor||Principal Demographer Planning Information & Forecasting Unit||Department of Local Government and Planning|
|Anglo Coal (Capcoal Management) Pty Ltd|
|Ms||Helen||Cheney||Senior Research Fellow||Institute for Sustainable Futures University of Technology|
|Mr||Roger||Wischusen||Manager||Australian Coal Association Research Program (ACARP)|
|Ms||Lisa||Pollard||Principal Policy Officer||Department of the Premier and Cabinet|
|Ms||Fiona||Martin||Principal Advisor||Office of Regional Development Department of State Development|
|Mr||Keith||Barker||Representative||Queensland Mining Council|
|Cr||Peter||Maguire||Mayor||Emerald Shire Council|
|Bowen Basin Partnerships Project Management Group:|
|Mr Region||Frank||Gilbert||Regional Manager Mackay/Whitsunday||Department of the Premier and Cabinet|
|Mr||Patrick||Noonan||A/Strategic Projects Manager Mackay/Whitsunday Region||Department of the Premier and Cabinet|
|Mrs||Louise||McLennan||A/Executive Support Officer Mackay/Whitsunday Region||Department of the Premier and Cabinet|
|Mr||Bill||Higham||Regional Manager Central Queensland RegionRockhampton||Department of the Premier and Cabinet|
Central Queensland RegionRockhampton
|Department of the Premier and Cabinet|
|Mr||Jim||Grundy||Regional Manager Mines||Department of Natural Resources, Mines|
|Mr||John||Morris||Director State Development Centre, Mackay||Department of State Development|
|Mr||Stephen||Schwarten||Senior Policy Officer Office of Rural Communities||Department of Primary Industries|
Regional Strategy and Policy
|Department of the Premier and Cabinet|
|Unable to attend:|
|Ms||Paula||Thomson||Manager||Department of the Premier and Cabinet|
|Dr||Martin||Bell||Demographer||Qld Centre for Population Research University of Queensland|
|Ms||Maree||Franettovich||Research Consultant||Centre for Social Science Research Central Queensland University|
|Dr||Judith||Winternitz||Deputy Executive Director||Bureau of Transport & Regional Economics|
|Dr||Neil||Paulsen||Lecturer School of Business||University of Queensland|
|Dr||Lee||Di Milia||Senior Lecturer||School of Management Central Queensland University|
|Structural change in the area creating friction and opportunities opportunity to make inter-sectoral links especially because of the special relationship with coal industry.|
One website with a small project team:
|Approach Bob Miles to set up web pages under ISRD?|
|Don't expect the group to do to much informal network a dedicated group.|
Gaps in Research
Gaps in Research
|Understanding and Linkages/Networking|
Development of Understanding:
|Draw Industry into Social Framework:|
|Clarify information needs:|
|Community consultation including unions|
Issues in forming partnerships
|who owns it? who controls it? what will the outcomes be?|
Please click on this link to access a list of research network participants and their contact details.