This report summarises the findings of a review of selected aspects of the 2010 and 2011 regional plans of the 55 Regional Development Australia committees. The Indian Ocean territories of Christmas Island and Cocos Keeling Island are also included in the summary, because although they are not part of an RDA, they are aligned with RDA Midwest Gascoyne to achieve regional development outcomes and also prepared a regional plan.
In 2012, staff from the ABS reviewed the 55 regional plans prepared by the RDA committees. The purposes of this review were to understand the key issues facing RDA committees in urban, rural and remote areas of Australia and how those issues could be supported by data and analysis. This research paper summarises those issues, grouped in the following categories: economy, population, environment, society and infrastructure. A number of RDA committees also identified data gaps and deficiencies. These are discussed in Chapter 7.
It is important to note that this research paper does not summarise the opportunities and aspirations that were also found in the RDA regional plans. Also the issues identified in this review:
- Cannot be attributed to particular groups of stakeholders, as plans did not generally state whether the issues were raised by the RDA committee, members of the community, government stakeholders or in previous reports about the region.
- Cannot be added up, ranked or compared across regions, as they differ in importance and severity both within and between regions.