Economic recovery planning must work with local strengths and optimise actions for long-term outcomes.
- Coordinated and complementary
- Strategic and targeted
Wherever possible, economic recovery responses should align with existing relevant strategic, economic development, or recovery plans within the affected location. This will ensure that longer term trends impacting local industries are recognised and that investment in recovery interventions and projects is targeted to areas of competitive advantage that can create future opportunities and resilience. Equally, this will avoid masking deep-seated and ongoing impacts such as population decline and poor business performance. Additional considerations include:
- impact and needs assessments inform the changing needs of communities over time
- the provision of tailored advice to businesses to ensure informed decision making.
Economic recovery responses should be place-based and tailored to the economic and social characteristics of the affected regions (noting that this extends beyond directly impacted areas) as well as the nature and scale of the event experienced.
No one sector, community, institution or organisation can solve community recovery issues alone. Local business, industry and community are critical to understanding the economic impacts of an emergency event and effectively targeting economic recovery actions to community priorities and needs.
Councils, State Government and government agencies work in partnership with non-government organisations, community groups and businesses to deliver Victoria’s recovery programs and services. Service delivery is generally place-based and, where possible, led by councils in both delivery and coordination.
Coordinated and complementary
Government interventions will recognise the interrelationship between economic and community recovery, ensure their efforts reflect awareness of the economic consequences of their actions, and aim to be complementary to existing government policies and programs.
Strategic and targeted
Ensure good public policy principles are met (targeted, efficient, transparent, produces net benefits that are additional or increases equity, accountable). Economic recovery response looks beyond the objective of restoration (replacing) and focuses on a forward-looking economic development strategy and resilience based on the regions’ strengths and opportunities (build back better).
There is a strong parallel between economic consequence management following an emergency event and the rationale for government support for regional economic development and transition, particularly where such support is applied at a location-specific level in response to severe structural adjustment pressures. This suggests that economic recovery responsibilities in emergency management reform could be enhanced through alignment with the principles of the place-based investment approach (DJPR business-as-usual activities).
Variations in the economic performance between regions – particularly at a time of rapid or acute economic transition – are an important policy concern across Australia and other nations in the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). Such variations are evident in Victoria, and effectively responding to this spatial diversity is critical to delivering on the Victorian Government’s economic reform and regional growth objectives.
There are three sound policy reasons why a place-based approach to regional development is important to future competitiveness and productivity:
- Efficiency – bottlenecks and under-utilisation of local infrastructure and labour markets lead to sub-optimal state and national economic performance.
- Economic resilience – strategies that strengthen and diversify regional economies reduce the risk that the negative effects of external shocks will be enduring and geographically concentrated.
- Equity – disparities between regions raise issues of equity and access to economic opportunity.
Place-based approaches to regional economic development are designed to address these problems by improving the competitiveness of regions, and in doing so, maximise state and national output. Effective place-based approaches to regional development generally have the following design features:
- Strong institutions for regional planning and coordination.
- Investment in infrastructure that improves connections to external markets.
- Human capital development.
- Promoting export orientated and innovative local value chains.
- Integration of effort across different policy areas that maximise the benefits of government investment and foster the economic growth of regional and rural areas.