Government Community of Practice

Background

This forum was created in order for AM professionals in government bodies to convene, share, and grow their asset management skills and knowledge. It acts as a single meeting place for government professionals in asset management, bringing together and establishing connections that may have otherwise not been available.

Goals of the CoP

  • Bring together a group of like-minded professionals in government asset management
  • Share knowledge, experiences, and case studies in order to learn
  • Create strategies for implementing and improving current challenges in asset management in government departments
  • Help government bodies develop and enhance their asset management practice starting from the planning phase through to the retirement phase

Key meeting places of the CoP

The Sydney, Peth, Melbourne, Brisbane, and Hobart chapters will each hold government CoP events annually. To enquire about these events, please email the respective chapter chair.
For those who subscribe, a monthly newsletter will be emailed, containing all government-sector news in the asset management sphere.
The Government Community of Practice forum Forum.

GrampiansParks Victoria manages more than 28,000 assets, including facilities such as toilet blocks, parks and gardens, recreational spaces, playgrounds, piers and sporting grounds1.

Lately, there’s been a squabble over how one of Parks Victoria’s assets is being managed. What happens when there’s a dispute over managing assets? Who tells who what to do?

In February 2019, Parks Victoria placed a ban on rock climbing in the Grampians, the rugged and spiritual national park and mountain region just outside of Stawell and Ararat in Western Victoria. The ban stated that rock climbing in the Grampians region flouted the cultural heritage of the site, according to the traditional owners of the land.

The Australian Climbing Association Victoria (ACAV) has sought legal advice, seeking to overturn the ban. The ACAV states that the Andrews government has unfairly singled out climbers, accusing them of lighting fires illegally, stripping vegetation and causing erosionto the land. Lawyers acting on behalf of the ACAV state that the climbing prohibitions are ‘legally unreasonable and disproportionate to the supposed mischief to be addressed3.'

This legal stoush highlights some of the difficulties that lie in asset management. In some cases, certainly in private enterprise, it’s clear who owns the assets. But in the government sector, it’s not as distinct. For example, in this situation, there are voices who might argue the traditional owners of the land own the asset, while others acknowledge ownership as the elected government. But parks are public spaces, yet even others may state that the Grampians are owned by us all: tourists, Victorians, Australians, our indigenous people alike.

It cannot be overstated that careful management of our national parks, recreational spaces, and other public areas is a must. But as any asset manager would know, it is sometimes a fraught and difficult process.

Are you working in asset management in the government and infrastructure sector? Let us know your thoughts on the subject of ownership of assets. How do you get around the issues? Consider joining our Government Special Interest Group if you’d like to know more about asset management in government and infrastructure.

Photo by Manuel Meurisse on Unsplash


1 Sourced: https://parkweb.vic.gov.au/about-us/who-we-are/what-we-manage

2 Sourced: https://www.theaustralian.com.au/nation/politics/rock-climbers-poised-for-legal-fight-over-grampians-ban/news-story/1cd904a13ad93d48ef8bcb313cfb67ed

3 Sourced: http://acav.climb.org.au/news/

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