Applications open to run Australia’s first Centre of Excellence for Local Government

The Federal Government has invited universities to apply to become the home of Australia’s first Centre of Excellence for Local Government.

The Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd, announced plans to establish a new centre at the inaugural Australian Council of Local Government meeting in Canberra last November.

The Government is making up to $8 million available for this project.

Once established, the centre will foster improvement and professionalism within Australia’s third sphere of government. 

It is expected to:

  • showcase and encourage innovation and best practice across Local Government
  • improve Local Government workforce capability to address skill shortages
  • assist Local Government to attract and retain skilled staff
  • deliver training and development, including specialised leadership programs.

“We have consulted with Local Government on the proposal,” said Minister for Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government, Anthony Albanese.

“This consultation highlighted that a range of dispersed education and training services already exist, however significant gaps remain and there is a lack of coordination.

“The Centre of Excellence will help share knowledge and bridge the gaps between Local Governments, training providers and research institutions. 

“I encourage universities intending to submit an application to consider partnering with other institutions, Local Government stakeholders or others with expertise.

“Applicants should build on other related and existing initiatives and propose strategies and services that are practical and affordable.

“They will also need to show how they will work with stakeholders to deliver services nationally. This includes providing online services, as well as tailoring specific services to meet regional needs.”

Applications close at 5pm AEST on Wednesday 22 April 2009.

A decision on the successful applicant will be made after an independent assessment process.

For further information on the selection process visit www.infrastructure.gov.au/local/centre_of_excellence