Published on March 20, 2014
Noosa Biosphere Reserve Structure
NICA 2013NICA 2013 CommunityCommunity ArtArt You will find Instructions to Artists and an Entry Form at the NICA website: www.noosariver.com.auwww.noosariver.com.au Entries close Friday 26th July and will be displayed at Noosa Library from 4th to 25th August 2013 Cultural BoardCultural Board Design a T Shirt featuring Noosa’s native plants For inspiration go to www.noosasurface design.com www.noosasnativeplants.com.au.
Key messages from our presentation • Evolutionary change that builds on the Noosa model and strengths • Shared ownership of ‘structure’ and ‘strategy’ between council and community – not council controlled • Different pathways for individuals and groups to engage • Management structure that coordinates cross-sectoral and community action • Ethics & professionalism in working practices & standards • The structure and initiatives need to be appropriately resourced and professionally supported & • Expected outcomes need to be realistic.
VISION - BUILD ON OUR STRENGTHS, WHILE ALSO ADDRESSING OUR WEAKNESSES Noosa Biosphere Reserve will be a community and place that is recognised locally, nationally and internationally as a centre for learning and excellence in community engagement, sustainable economic & cultural development and environmental conservation. Conservation Sustainable development Community forum & engagement Learning and research Realisation 2020: • People are proud of their Biosphere • The Noosa Biosphere brand is known • People know the Biosphere Reserve is good for business • There is a Biosphere Centre for Excellence • People understand & look after their environment • People live in the iconic landscapes • People are actively engaged in Biosphere related projects & activities
Key actions to date Timeframe Action Follow on 2000s International Recognition Working Group – canvas forms of recognition MaB for now, World Heritage and Ramsar possible for future 2006-7 Biosphere Reserve nomination preparation – Council staff & consultant Steven Poole (pd by council) Biosphere nomination signed off at all levels of Aust govt and approved by UNESCO 2008 Amalgamation of local government councils. Proposal that Biosphere Reserve Management occur through a not-for-profit company, Governance Board of Directors, sector boards maintained, Council as ‘owner’ UNESCO agreed the new structure still provided good cooperative approach 2014 De-amalgamation – ownership of NBL company passed back to Noosa Council. NBR gaining traction, 60,000 hits/wk on website, invitations to international UNESCO meetings, Voices of Biosphere radio repeat, more community interest, etc Council called review process. No budget allocation, reduction in staff support. Criticism of achievements to date
Previous Noosa Council Community Governance Model Noosa CouncilTourism Noosa Social Environment Culture Economic • Community Sector Boards with approximately 10 representatives each • Councillors assigned to each board, council staff involved with each as well • Advice provided to council • Strategies and projects operationalised by Council • Supported by one staff secretariat member + others through sector board activities • Small budget + 1 project officer
NBL Current Model & selected Working Parties & Projects NBL Governance Board Tourism Social Environment Culture Economic • Two Councillors on Governance Board • Advice provided to Council • Strategies and projects (2-3 major per year, av 20 others operationalised by Boards and Partners • Up to 2013 supported by 1.6 staff secretariat member (Project Officer & Exec Officer) • Budget of $170,000 (Estimate Biosphere community in kind contribution $314,840) Education Councillors on Governance Board. Secretariat staff support activities Communications Director & Web Managers Balance – Unbalance Conference & Committee Partners Program Voices of the Biosphere Radio Program State of the Biosphere Working Party Biosphere Festival & Working Party BISN Centre of Excellence Working Party Information Sessions & Programs for International Visitors
Proposed Noosa Biosphere Reserve Management Noosa Biosphere Governance Board Tourism Social Environment Culture Economic Education Noosa Council Other BR Organisations e.g. BISN/ NCET Policy/strategy Working Parties Community Membership Scheme Biosphere Working Parties - Projects Council Staff Partners Program (3 Tier) • Governance board – key coordinating role, with Councillor representatives • Sector boards or forums, partners can attend as can other members, council staff as ex-officio • Expanded partners program with three tier structure to recognise certification • Working parties for strategic ongoing projects and specific short term projects • Open membership or ‘friends’ scheme • Connected to other entities for specific sponsorship & research functions e.g. NCET & BISN – but some shared directors
Biosphere Partners Phase I, II & III • Noosa and District Landcare • Noosa Integrated Catchment Association • SEQ Catchments • Noosa Residents and Ratepayers • University of the Sunshine Coast • Sunshine Coast Institute of TAFE • Sheraton Noosa Resort and Spa • The Original Eumundi Markets • Noosa Federation of the Arts • CQUniversity Noosa • Noosa Ferries • Noosa Outrigger • Noosa, Sunshine Beach and Peregian Surf Clubs • Tourism Noosa • Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre • Bark Design Architects • Creative Alliance - Sunshine Coast • Kanu Kapers • Kayak Noosa • Kin Kin State School • Noosa Community Training Centre (Brite Side Industries) • Noosa Longboards • Noosa Museum • Slow Food Noosa & the Noosa Community Garden • The Outdoor Education Consultants
Suggested change to partners program Three tiered model • Tier 1 (entry level) being endorsement of their application, • Tier 2 for those with recognisable sustainability certification relevant to their field, • Tier 3 for those who have achieved the Tier 1 and 2 status and also demonstrate triple- bottom line actions.
Working parties – ongoing & project specific • State of the Biosphere • Biosphere Institute for Sustainability: Noosa • Biosphere Festival • Balance-Unbalance conference • Climate adaptation project Possible new ones • International designation • Branding and certification
Conclusion • We have developed a great Noosa model that is just gaining traction • What we need is evolutionary change that builds on our achievements and strengths • The issues are complex and detailed and we need more than 10 minutes to unpack them • Please take a look at some of our outcomes!
Final proposal for BR Management – 2008 UNESCO approval for change to management structure that was in the original submission (prior to amalgamation). CEO emailed UNESCO and had this response “From my reading of your Management Model for Noosa, I see that it addresses very well the broad- based stakeholder consultation and co-operative approach that is recommended by the Seville Strategy and the Statutory Framework.” UNESCO MaB Director Dr Natarajan Ishwaran 5/3/2008
Findings from reviewing other models e.g. North Devon (UK), Western Port (Victoria), Western Cape (South Africa) • Most have a management group that has representation from different stakeholders, universities, different levels of government, business, environmental groups • Some have a specific scientific/research group • Most that have a program of activity and action have paid staff (project officers, Executive Officers etc), generally funded by various levels of government (e.g. Council and national) • There are some membership models around (not especially successful), some free, some paid, not necessarily any link between them and the management group • None have a model with community involvement across sectors • Our focus beyond environment to economic and education (and including social, cultural focus especially is quite unique). This is also the key to our strength.
How are sector board and 3 community directors on Governance board appointed? • Application via selection criteria • Boards interview and put forward appointments • Look for coverage of skills & expertise across board • Working party (2 Councillors, 2 officers, Chair) endorse • Checks & balance process – appeal option • Is this democratic? • Democratic processes – allow individuals in a group or society to be involved in decision making processes • NBL operates according to open, democratic and ethical principles
Community directors The Role • Board members are volunteers from the community who are interested in progressing the principles of biosphere reserves • Board members are involved in offering advice, but also planning & implementing projects, and engaging in various events & activities • Board members are expected to attend meetings regularly and engage with related reading, discussion and activity • Board members need to be able to work effectively as part of a team & to engage in debate and discussion in a respectful & engaged manner • Across the scope of each board, members with knowledge in the field, and skills & experiences in areas such as research, writing, communication & project management are desirable. Nomination form • Past experience & qualifications that would assist in performing role as Governance Board Director • Previous community involvement • Additional information to support your selection • Understanding of what a biosphere is and vision for NBR • Capacity to contribute to strategic planning and decision making with company board, leadership & governance experience • Ability to contribute to working effectively as part of a team • Commitment and capacity to devote reasonable time required by the board • Any other information to support nomination
Sector boards (or forums) Role • Promote projects that support the functions of Biosphere Reserves • Encourage partnerships between the Sector Boards, and with other organisations, to foster those projects • Develop action plans to provide a strategic framework for identification and implementation of projects • Provide advice on such projects, plans and other matters • Monitor progress on the contribution of projects to achieving the overall vision for the Noosa Biosphere Reserve, including development and use of key performance indicators. • Provide and receive advice without fear or favour. Nomination form: • Past experience of relevance to your chosen board • Previous/current community involvement • Additional information to support your selection – Extensive experience and/or a keen interest in one or more themes of the Noosa Biosphere Reserve – Sound experience in strategic planning and/or thinking – Ability to contribute effectively to working as part of a team – Enthusiasm, commitment and capacity to devote reasonable time required by the Board or specific projects
Noosa Biosphere Partners – key mechanism for community engagement, ideas generation and sharing Criteria • Embrace the values and principles of the Noosa Biosphere in their approach to being who they are and what they do • Participate with Noosa Biosphere on activities that deliver outcomes relevant to the community, industry and business • exhibit good stewardship of the environment, conservation, preservation and sustainability of endeavour • Promote the values and principles of biosphere to their staff, customers and others • Reducing carbon footprint and encouraging others to also seek best- practice outcomes • Support Noosa Biosphere in its endeavours wherever practical and possible.
Extend ‘Membership’ – open membership or friends scheme • There could be an open membership (or friends) category created • Members could nominate to be on working parties, sector boards or governance board • They could also be called upon to volunteer for different Biosphere Reserve and community events • Tiered payment scheme to recognise different income levels • According to some other BRs, membership programs can be labour intensive to support, with low financial returns need to factor that into resourcing • Currently individuals can’t be called ‘members’ under current constitution – council is the only legal ‘member’, would have to be ‘friends’ or change the consititution.
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