Choosing the best method or a combination of methods is
a crucial step in designing an effective consultation plan.
The method will vary according to the project, policy, plan
or issue that requires input.
To assist we have grouped the sorts of activities on which
local governments typically need feedback and matched them
with methods that are always, often and occasionally appropriate
Activities are grouped as follows:
AND POLICIES - Council and Community Plans
This covers the major strategic exercises that councils
undertake, including council or community plans, budget/long
term financial plans, municipal public health plans, municipal
strategic statements and community building or neighbourhood
They are municipal-wide and present complex consultation
challenges. Consultation approaches on these issues go well
beyond placing statutory advertisements, which at best serve
to notify people who read them that the issue is under consideration.
Community building and neighbourhood renewal activities
are included under this broad category. In this context,
they relate to a whole-of-municipality initiative and can
differ in approach (whether it is focused geographically
or demographically) and governance arrangements (local government,
state or commonwealth funded or combination of these).
This group includes policy and strategy development on issues
that impact particular groups and/or areas and can include
positioning policies such as a drug strategy to strategic
plans, for example an older residents plan.
Services and operational issues are the focus of this category.
It includes all service reviews, such as those undertaken
for best value and planning activities.
SPECIFIC - Land Use
Issues that relate to a particular site/s make up this group.
It includes statutory building and planning matters and
This group is made up of council-wide and individual service/issue
assessments of council performance (often known as council