Illawarra residents have one week left to comment on the discussion paper, The Illawarra Over The Next 20 Years, as the NSW government develops a new plan for the way the region grows.
On Friday night ‘‘sleek geek’’ Dr Karl Kruszelnicki and social researcher Mark McCrindle painted a positive vision for the Illawarra at a NSW government event called Talkabout: Your Future Illawarra, attended by 180 people at the University of Wollongong.
The Department of Planning’s southern regional director Brett Whitworth said both speakers shared thought-provoking ideas about how society is changing and adapting and how to plan for the future in response.
Mr Whitworth said Dr Kruszelnicki spoke about how the ICT industry changes and adapts so quickly and with the Illawarra home to a university with one of the largest numbers of ICT graduates, the region was well placed to take advantage of that.
Mr McCrindle spoke about the changes in society and an ageing population.
However, Mr McCrindle also pointed out there was a need to communicate with future generations on challenges such as housing and job creation – and how that communication with Gen Y or Gen Z may be in different forms to those used in the past.
‘‘We are still taking submissions on the discussion paper until November 11...we hope to have the draft regional growth plan ready to release early in the new year,’’ Mr Whitworth said.
The discussion paper can be viewed online here.