MacroMelbourne towards 2030
MacroMelboure was the second major strategic initiative of what was
formerly the Melbourne Community Foundation, now Australian Communities
Foundation. This strategic approach was designed to ensure
that Melbourne is, and continues to be, a liveable city for all its
people as it faces the challenges of growth over the next 25 years.
The Foundation led this initiative for its donors and the broader
philanthropic community based on the ideas of partnership and collaboration,
creating and investing in evidence-based research and the idea that more can be
achieved together than individually.
Through the development, testing and implementing of a solid research
and evidence base about disadvantage and inequality in Greater Melbourne (in partnership
with Deakin and Melbourne Universities), the MacroMelbourne initiative over six years supported
the implementation of 27 projects across Melbourne raising more than $2 million
dollars in funding as well as in kind support. It also produced deep and lasting partnerships and collaborations
between philanthropy, business, government and community sector organisations which
have continued beyond the initiative.
Of particular significance was MacroMelbourne’s Phase 2 focus on the
urban growth areas of Melbourne which enabled emerging issues to be identified
through high quality research. The strategies
and projects developed to address the specific and emerging needs of these
communities were brought to the attention of philanthropy and business
relatively early rather than waiting until problems became more entrenched.
MarcoMelbourne was delivered in Two Phases between 2005 and 2011, with
some projects still continuing.
In 2009, the Foundation engaged the McCaughey Centre at University of Melbourne
to review and provide input into an update of the original Phase 1 MacroMelbourne report. Despite
an increasing public policy focus on addressing disadvantage and increasing
social inclusion, research indicated there was continuing and growing levels of
poverty and inequality across Greater Melbourne.
disadvantage and inequality can divide communities, the Initiative aimed to
identify areas where philanthropic investment could contribute to creating a
more equitable, sustainable and liveable Melbourne.
Two key reports
were produced as part of Phase 2 of the MacroMelbourne initiative which focused
the work that was undertaken.
Since the launch of
Phase 2 of this strategic initiative in December 2009, MacroMelbourne raised more than $1.4 million for a range of
projects on the urban fringes of Melbourne. Further, additional funding has been received by a number of the Phase 2
projects either to continue or expand the original focus of work. For example, Project 1 Social Benchmarking Planning Tool was redeveloped into a 4 Stage
Project with funding from local and State Governments, a private property developer
and Philanthropy. Project 4 Craigieburn Employment Mentoring Program has
now been renamed Joblink 3064 and has now
grown and developed into a major employment program receiving Government and
The research report Social and Economic Disadvantage in
Melbourne: Trends, Challenges and Priorities for Philanthropic Investment provided a
solid evidence base for the Initiative. It clearly showed that while there was
evidence of disadvantage and inequality across a range of urban neighbourhoods
and communities, it was the new, outer suburbs which require urgent attention
because of rapid and unexpected growth and lack of adequate physical and social
infrastructure. In addition, Melbourne’s
rapid population growth in the outer urban areas was creating new
concentrations of disadvantage and inequality which were not able to be met by
the existing service system.
On the basis of the data and analysis undertaken by this report, contact
was made by the Foundation with the six urban growth areas of Cardinia, Casey,
Hume, Melton, Whittlesea and Wyndham to discuss findings, implications and
potential government, community sector, corporate and philanthropic partners.
Click here to download the research report
The project report MacroMelbourne: A Liveable City for all
its People? A focus on the urban growth areas of Melbourne outlined
14 community based projects which addressed the six key priority areas for
funding identified through the research. The Foundation then sought
partnerships with individual donors, philanthropic organisations and business
to raise the funding and in kind support required to implement these projects
and help build robust communities in the urban growth areas of Greater
Click here to download the project report
The MacroMelbourne Initiative received wide coverage in the media with local and Melbourne newspapers running a series of articles highlighting the research findings and emerging needs in the outer suburbs. A number local papers in the urban growth areas also ran articles to raise the profile of the MacroMelbourne projects in their communities and help garner support. Below are a few examples:
Climate change, sea levels will split rich, poor - study - Herald Sun 01/12/09
Climate change to hit Melbourne: report - The Age 01/12/09
Projects for Hume disadvantaged need cash
Key urban challenges
MacroMelbourne, the second major initiative to be implemented as part of Melbourne
Community Foundation's strategic funding focus was a recognition that the
decisions taken at a particular point in time have an effect and impact on that
generation but also on future generations. At its core was the principle that Melbourne should be a liveable city
for all its citizens. This purpose is captured in the MacroMelbourne
values statement viewable below.
Phase 1 of the initiative was undertaken in
collaboration with the Committee for Melbourne, Melbourne Cares, ProBono
Australia, the Victorian Local Governance Association, the Victorian Council of
Social Service, RMIT University, Deakin University and the Victorian
Whilst government authorities set planning
parameters and provide infrastructure, such as roads, public transport, schools
and health services, there is much that philanthropic trusts, large
corporations, small businesses, universities and community organisations can do
to help shape Melbourne’s future. MacroMelbourne provides a focus for
building collaboration, considering the evidence and initiating projects that
can help shape this future.
To get to the point of considering ideas for
action, the MacroMelbourne initiative started by looking at the evidence
in relation to disadvantage in Melbourne, the extent to which it already is a
divided city and how growth may exacerbate this divide.
Independent research, funded by the Department for
Victorian Communities, was undertaken by Associate Professor Linda Hancock and
Lucinda Horrocks of the Corporate Citizenship Research Unit at Deakin
University, in collaboration with the Victorian Council of Social Service.
Written comments on, and ideas arising from the 140
page report were invited from five highly respected researchers not involved in
the preparation of the main study, both from Australia and the UK.
Click here to download a copy of MacroMelbourne Full Research Report (16mb PDF)
A broadly representative forum in July 2006, explored and built on the ideas outlined in the report and responses. It added the experience of a broad cross section of people from business, community organisations, government, universities and philanthropy. The forum focussed on five key issues which fundamentally impact on disadvantage and these included bridging the digital divide, health and wellbeing, affordable housing, education, and transport.
A post forum document summarising several of the key issues discussed at the forum was widely distributed within philanthropic and corporate sectors. It outlined 13 concrete projects which could help in addressing disadvantage in Melbourne and indicated the resources required to make this happen – both financial and in-kind. The document aimed to make it easy for companies and private donors to connect with the organisations working on the ground to address major areas of inequity and disadvantage across Melbourne over the coming decades. There is a solid evidence base underpinning each of the projects selected for inclusion.
Phase 1 of MacroMelbourne clearly demonstrated that evidence-based research can lead to collaborative partnerships between philanthropists, corporates and community organisations to meet identified needs. It is estimated that in excess of $700,000 of MCF and other corporate/philanthropic dollars and in-kind support was provided to the 13 projects.
Click here for the project document: MacroMelbourne: A Liveable City for all its People. What you need to know and how to get involved.
Safe, liveable and vibrant cities are created by global and national forces and the collective will of the people who live and work in them.
The creation of great cities requires courage, a collective vision, good governance and the willingness of many people and organisations to contribute to the way a city is shaped.
Each city creates its own narrative with which people identify and share a common pride.
For Melbourne, the narrative tells the story of migration, the Hoddle grid, gold, enterprise, financial investment, public education, Redman Barry and the rule of law, reconciliation, Governor La Trobe and the emergence of public institutions such as the State Library, Mechanics Institute and Melbourne University, tram and train systems and grand public buildings.
Melbourne's narrative is the story of its past, the legacies left by each generation and the decisions now that are shaping its future.
MacroMelbourne is about the vision for Melbourne looking a generation ahead. It is about imagining what Melbourne's narrative might be in 25 years. It is a recognition that decisions now will shape what is yet to be written, the narrative that is within the keep of this generation to leave for future generations.
To be able to make judgements now that shape the future there must be guiding principles. We cannot know the outcomes or the impact of decisions before they happen. We can only exercise good judgement based on sound principles.
The over-riding principle of MacroMelbourne is that Melbourne should be a liveable city for all of its citizens.
From this single principle derive many others against which our judgements and decisions can be measured. These touchstones of good decision making are;
MacroMelbourne aims to foster collaboration in order that Melbourne might develop as a liveable city for all of its citizens.
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