" The paths to the future are not found but created"

What's New

2 February 2013
Rethinking Local Government Conference. Hosted on 1 February 2013 by the Tauranga Chamber of Commerce with the support of the Bay of Plenty Regional Council, this very successful conference focused on the Bay of Plenty Region of New Zealand. Peter McKinlay presented on pressures for change in local government, drawing extensively on his international experience. See his presentation here. All presentations and video footage can be seen on the Chamber's website.

25 October 2012
Wellington Rotary held its Annual Forum in partnership with Victoria University of Wellington, Wellington: What we want? How do we get there? Peter McKinlay presented on the theme Community Governance Internationally – Trends and Highlights.

November 2102

NSW local government reforms spark furore.
The NSW Independent Panel discussion paper Better, Stronger Local Government: the Case for Sustainable Change (November 2012) has sparked a real furore. Many councils think it is signalling that compulsory amalgamation is back on the table.  To quote one newspaper: “The state government is preparing to backflip on a key election promise and force councils to amalgamate.” Other media reports.  MDL is helping a number of NSW councils develop their strategies on reform options. 

31 October 2102
The annual conference of the Local Government Association of New South Wales was held 28-30 October, in Dubbo, on the theme Supporting Strong Economic Management. Peter McKinlay was a keynote speaker with his paper Local Government: Shaping the Future.

A major Trans-Tasman report on local government takes a fresh objective look at amalgamations, boundary changes, shared services and regional collaboration. MDL was the New Zealand partner in the project. See media coverage, Australia and New Zealand; contact us for advice on implications for your council or region.

30 June 2012
On 27 and 28 June the Municipal Association of Victoria presented the 2012 Future of Local Government Summit Local Government Leading Change. It's a hard look at options for the future of local government and brought together experts on local government and major stakeholders including Jeff Kennett, who, as Prime Minister, implemented the major restructuring of local government in Victoria in the 1990s. View the programme and the discussion paper for the summit.
Presentations from the NZ Institute of Public Administration Rethinking Local Government – International Trends and Thoughts for the Waikato conference, held at Karapiro on 10 August, are available here.

14 April 2011
Peter McKinlay presented two separate papers to the Pacific Economic Cooperation Council seminar, Environmental Sustainability in Urban Centres: one on the Auckland ‘super city’ project and the relationship between service delivery and good governance; the other on how to develop good governance at the city level. The first paper outlines the structure of the Auckland ‘super city’ and explores in some detail the arrangements being put in place for the governance and accountability of its council controlled organisations, including supporting local democratic accountability. The second paper considers the changing context for good city governance. It looks especially at the implications for local government of the fact that the major issues it is now required to manage all require behavioural change at the community level, something which cannot be compelled but needs to be achieved through a process of partnership and education. Click to view the service delivery/governance paper. Click to view the city-level governance paper.

10 March 2011
Peter McKinlay was the guest presenter at a workshop hosted by the London-based think-tank, the Local Government Information Unit, on the use of arms-length entities. His focus was New Zealand's experience with council controlled organisations as an example for UK local government to follow once it receives a power of general competence (legislation is currently going through the UK Parliament). View his presentation here. 

March 2011
MDL’s Executive Director Peter McKinlay was elected as an alternate board member for the London-based Commonwealth Local Government Forum at its recent biennial conference. The Forum links together governments, local governments and researchers across the Commonwealth. As an officially recognised Commonwealth organisation, the London-based CLGF draws on the influential network of the Commonwealth to influence policy development and to provide a lead on democracy and good governance across the Commonwealth. Its core activities - which include conferences and events, programmes and projects, and research and information – are designed to encourage the exchange of best practice. CLGF is unique in bringing together central, provincial and local spheres of government involved in local government policy and decision-making. CLGF has more than 160 members in 40 Commonwealth countries.

24 December 2010
Congratulations to McKinlay Douglas Principal Adrienne von Tunzelmann for being made an Accredited Director of the NZ Institute of Directors. Accreditation aims to raise corporate governance standards in New Zealand by providing a register of directors who can show evidence of their professional status in terms of boardroom knowledge and experience.

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