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For the past 10 years, the Regional Australia Institute (RAI) has been dedicated to providing authoritative and trusted research and policy advice on regional issues. 

All our research firmly points towards the conclusion that Australia will be a stronger, more prosperous nation if our regions are stronger. It shows the enormous potential for regional Australia to optimise its growth, bringing significant benefits to the entire nation and increasing opportunity for all Australians. 

To become a stronger nation, better equipped for an uncertain future, the RAI is calling for a rebalancing of the nation. We want more balanced population growth so that our cities become more liveable, while our regions get the people they need to stay open for business. We want regional Australia to achieve its potential in productivity, increasing the prosperity of the nation. And we want regional towns and cities to boast the services and infrastructure that they need to attract new residents, retain locals and ensure that everyone enjoys the quality of life that Australia, the lucky country, should be able to offer to all Australians. 

Australia has no single national approach which draws together the various different themes which are all part of unlocking regional Australia’s potential. This is a clear void, one which we want to fill by creating a framework which will ensure that our traditionally metro-centric policy-making, attention and investment does not become entrenched, and which provides a set of critical targets and actions to strengthen regional Australia. 

We are seeking to take the knowledge and data from our 10 years of research and to consult widely across the nation to develop an approach that will define and describe agreed areas of focus which, if actioned, will lead to a stronger regional Australia, and a stronger nation. 

In March 2022, we published our “Regionalisation Consultation Paper: Rebalancing the Nation” which kicked off a three month consultation period engaging with Government, Industry and Regional and Community stakeholders right across the country. The paper explores the five foundations of regionalisation in Australia, identified through 10 years of RAI research, the recent trends, and the opportunities that could be realised with a bold regionalisation vision.

We wish to thank the many individuals and organisations who have shared insights, experience and feedback during this period – it has been invaluable and is now helping to shape our Regionalisation vision, which we will be launching at the RAI’s flagship Regions Rising National Summit in September 2022. 

By creating a framework, the RAI is seeking to lead a shift in mind-set, one in which there is sufficient focus on regional Australia. We believe that this work will create a lasting legacy, with the potential to shape the nation for future generations. 

Find the Consultation Paper here