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Australia/New Zealand  

Can We Improve Indigenous Participation in Placemaking?

In July, the Green Building Council of Australia (GBCA) hosted A Road to Reconciliation event in Sydney which highlighted the importance of businesses having a Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) and a commitment to increasing Indigenous participation in development.


L to R: Donna Ingram (Cultural and Community Representative, Eora - provided the Welcome to Country), Rikki-Lea James (WSP), Liz Potter (Lendlease), Michael Manikas (GBCA), Catherine Hunter (KPMG).

Rikki-Lea James from the WSP Sustainability team spoke alongside Catherine Hunter, Partner & Head of Corporate Citizenship at KPMG; and Liz Potter, Head of Indigenous Affairs at Lendlease; and, the moderator was Michael Manikas, Head of Industry Development at the GBCA.

Ms James shared the benefits of WSP’s RAP as well as the importance of placemaking and community involvement in Australia’s growing cities.

Ms James said, “As our population becomes more urbanised and we see a rise in precinct developments, our Sustainability team have recognised the need for reconciliation initiatives to be introduced.” 

In collaboration with WSP’s Indigenous Participation Director, Julia Carpenter, the Sustainability team developed a module of best practices for projects, to ensure reconciliation initiatives are place based and that they extend to the design of a project. The module also has a robust focus on encouraging proactive consultation with Indigenous communities.

In recent years, the property industry has experienced an evolution whereby sustainability services such as Green Star and NABERS rating tools have moved from a point of difference to being normalised. Similarly, our team are working towards helping clients to normalise Indigenous participation in placemaking.

To learn more about WSP’s RAP, please click here.

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