Bright Minds Help Plan for Prosperity

Published 12 May 2021

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A partnership between Moreton Bay Regional Council and USC will help respond to and overcome roadblocks along the region’s path to prosperity.

Starting next month, a team of USC academics will use world-class research scenario-planning tools to shape future regional initiatives, which will enable Council to monitor and manage future economic and social risks.

Mayor Peter Flannery said collaboration was key to achieving the Regional Economy Development Strategy (REDS) targets of a $40 billion economy, 100,000 news jobs and becoming one of the top regional innovation hubs in Australia by 2041.

“It’s not ambitious to strive for a bigger, bolder and brighter future for Moreton Bay Region, however a goal without a plan is just a wish,” Mayor Flannery said.

“What is ambitious is thinking our economy will meet those targets without future thought.

“Rebuilding from the impacts of COVID-19, responding to the needs of an ageing population and ensuring sustainable and resilient infrastructure are just a few of the future challenges we must plan for.

“If we get the planning right, we will be in a better position to support our projected 700,000 residents in 20 years’ time.”

Head of USC Moreton Bay Professor Karen Becker said the partnership between the University and the Council would create contingency plans for dealing with future threats.

“USC has the expertise to assist Moreton Bay Regional Council as we have experienced researchers who are aware of the challenges and opportunities in the region and can help with identifying what is needed to achieve the ambitious goals set,” she said.

Lead researcher and USC Senior Lecturer in Communication Dr Harry Dugmore said he was looking forward to beginning the project soon.

“Collaborative scenario planning provides a set of tools that can increase engagement and understanding, help envision and mitigate risk, and identify opportunities for growth and inclusion,” Dr Dugmore said.

Mayor Flannery said part of the planning for threats is identifying opportunities.

“Last week we welcomed 70 investors from across the country to our inaugural Investors’ Forum to understand the opportunities that lie ahead in this region,” Mayor Flannery said.

“With a work force that is bigger than Ipswich, Logan and Sunshine Coast, and an insightful plan for a robust economic future, Moreton Bay Region will logically be a location of interest for new industries and investors.

“We wanted to make it clear that Moreton Bay Region is ready to do business.”

For more information about Council’s REDS, visit