Hi #SmartCommunity friends, welcome back to the Smart Community Podcast. This month we are highlighting Smart Regions with two fantastic guests. If you haven’t yet listened to our interview with Tim Neale in the last episode, I definitely recommend listening to it after this one. In this episode, I have a wonderful chat with repeat guest and Queensland Chief Entrepreneur, Julia Spicer. We first had Julia on the podcast way back in Episode 152, which was in January 2020. (The beforetimes!)
In this episode, Julia and I discuss what a Smart Community means for her and what has changed for Queensland regions since January 2020. We talk about the COVID experience and how it can teach us about what rural communities experience in prolonged drought and other parallel type experiences. Julia tells us about the generosity of spirit that she sees coming through in regional Queensland, and what COVID has taught us in terms of regional and industry level resilience.
Julia and I explore the role of technology and data when responding to crisis, and the role of government in supporting people and businesses to modernise. We talk about the absolute necessity of internet connectivity and the challenges and opportunities for Smart Communities in regional areas. Julia then tells us about the projects she’s involved in as part of her role with the Office of the Chief Entrepreneur in Queensland, as well as the emerging trends of global workforce shortages and the need for sovereign capability in Australia to support supply chains and industries.
We finish our chat discussing how everyone in Queensland can leverage the opportunity of the Brisbane 2032 Olympics, even if you think it doesn’t apply to you. As always, we hope you enjoy listening to this episode as much as we enjoyed making it.
What we cover in this episode:
- Julia’s background in South-Western Queensland
- What a Smart Community means to Julia
- What has changed for Queensland regions since January 2020 when Julia was last on the podcast
- What the COVID experience can teach us about what rural communities experience during prolonged drought
- The generosity of spirit that comes through in regional Queensland
- How we can look at COVID as an opportunity to learn about resilience at a regional and industry level
- The importance of moving quickly and imperfectly to respond during crisis
- The role of technology and data when responding to crisis
- How government can and should support people and businesses to modernise in order to build resilience
- The necessity of internet connectivity and why an online presence is no longer optional for regional businesses
- The skillsets and mindset shifts businesses need to use their data, grow and be resilient
- How regions can work together from a tourism perspective to support each other
- The challenges and opportunities for Smart Communities in the regions when it comes to housing and infrastructure
- Projects Julia is involved with as part of the QLD Chief Entrepreneur role
- The emerging trend of global workforce shortages
- The emerging trend of the need for sovereign capability in Australia to support supply chains and industries
- How everyone in Queensland can leverage the opportunity of the Brisbane 2032 Olympics
“As a proud regional Queenslander, I always say, I’m not a tree, I live in the regions because I want to live here not because I can’t move anywhere else. And I want to contribute to a viable and vibrant regional community.”
“We have a mechanism now of looking at how do we make sure that people don’t fall through the cracks during really traumatic experiences, like COVID, like a drought, like whatever it might be.”
“If we look at how we can understand each other between the regions and the cities, actually COVID, in some little way, gave people a little bit of an insight into what it’s like when your community is in a prolonged drought. You don’t know when it’s going to end, you don’t know how it’s going to impact you.”
“It created the opportunity actually for the regions and the cities to really come together. And for us to be smarter around how we did business, how we communicated. We all know what Zoom and Teams and Google Meets are now, so we actually can do business quite differently. And we can engage quite differently now, as a result of COVID having happened to all of us across the globe.”
“If we look at resilience at a regional and industry level, I think one of the opportunities that, again, comes from something like COVID happening is as a nation, we kind of got to see where we’re slightly vulnerable in terms of being able to access goods and services at a global level.”
“We know we need homes, but let’s not build them for this problem that we’ve got today. Let’s make sure that we’re building homes and infrastructure for what we need over the next twenty years.”
Connect with Julia via LinkedIn or with Engage and Create Consulting on Facebook and Instagram @engageandcreate
Connect with me via email: email@example.com
The Smart Community Podcast is produced by Perk Digital.