Community Groups at the Crossroads

Communities in Control 2012

Community Groups at the Crossroads

Conference opened 28 May 2012, Melbourne
Now, more than ever, we are standing at a crossroads.

We're standing at a crossroads looking at the tree shriveling up on the nature strip, waiting for the light to go green and the government to go green and the country to go green. We're watching old landmarks dissolve into the cloud without anyone having asked our permission. We're looking at gridlock, consulting our smartphone to find a way round.

We're waiting for other people to join us. Or we're turning off to join them. Or we're turning back to find them. Or we're watching as they disappear into the distance.

We're remaking the old maps. We look at the world as if it wasn't fixed in concrete, as if it could be made to work the way we were told it should, the way people want it to.

We're a movement, not a mob; we're not screaming at our rulers anymore, we're talking to each other. With or without them, we're ready to start moving.

Communities in Control 2012 brought together a diverse cross-section of people with two things in common - a belief in the power of community, and the courage to take action to defend it.

> Download 2012 conference brochure (PDF)

Added 29 May 2012

The Hon Joan Kirner AC

The 2012 Joan Kirner Social Justice Oration

In this keynote, the Hon Joan Kirner AC builds on last year's Social Justice Oration by former ACTU chief and international labour leader Sharan Burrow, and reflects on what she has learned over four decades of putting communities firmly in control - and where she thinks we need to go next.

Added 29 May 2012

Brett de Hoedt, Eyal Halamish, Cr Stephen Mayne, John Thwaites, Fran Bailey

Panel Session: Government Works - The OurSay Panel Responds

Hear what our panellists have to say on the issues you and your peers voted as most important.

Added 29 May 2012

Scott Riddle

Technological Stewardship: Charting your course in an increasingly digital world

The digital world is evolving at a rapid pace and is increasingly influencing our daily lives, both personally and professionally. For organisations that are trying to reach and engage with individuals and communities the swift adoption of new technologies can present challenges, but also enormous opportunities.

Added 29 May 2012

Damian Ogden

Generation Next: A new way forward for community leadership

Look around you - who do you see as the next crop of community leaders? Are they all that you hope for them? Can they help lead us to where we want Australia to be? Damian Ogden is working to make sure they are.

Added 28 May 2012

Dr James Whelan

Is Australia ready for 'Big Society'?

Former Reserve Bank Governor Bernie Fraser recently observed that Australian governments are "paving the way for an extreme ideology of small government". Conservative politicians, journalists and think tanks promote a much smaller state that plays a less active part in our lives. How would a sudden contraction of the public sector effect Australian society?