2021 Welcome: Regional Development Starting Points

Welcome to a new year, and a new series from the Bush Prof.

Each new year is a start – even when it starts out looking a lot like the old year. So the new Bush Prof series is about starting points.

It turns out that a great deal about how we see regional development depends on where we start.

If you start from somewhere different, you see a different landscape. I see the back of the mountain, you see the front. Same mountain, different shape.

Background, culture, history – these starting points matter for how we see regions, their problems and solutions.

Training, profession, sector, role – these starting point matter too.

Different starting points cause us to see different things, and develop different strategies for tackling what we see.

Many of the debates in regional development can, I believe, be illuminated by paying attention to starting points.

In this series, I will share my own starting points: where I came from, what I saw, why I became the Bush Prof – rather than, say, a regional economist, a policy analyst, or a bus driver! And I’ll challenge readers to consider their own starting points.

We’ll consider what these starting-points mean for what we see, and what we fail to see, when we look at rural regions and imagine their possible futures.

And we’ll identify some practical strategies we can use to fill in the gaps in our view.

It’s a big agenda, but here in Tasmania the days are long and the sun is bright. So let’s see how far we can get.

Published by The Bush Prof

Professor Robyn Eversole is a practical regional development academic based in rural Tasmania.

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