It’s 2030, imagine if…

Coalition of Everyone democratised regeneration by rejuvenating participatory decision-making. In 2023 CoE's vision was to shift collaborative practices and world views towards an ecological civilisation, and help us realign with the places we live in at a bioregional scale. Using Earth Equity, CoELAB acted as a resource engine for the work involved by inviting Nature to join boards, creating reciprocal value exchanges between humans, organisations and Nature. With the goal of tapping into place-based potential, led by First Nations knowledge-holders, CoE facilitated ‘ancient new’ ways of co-creating, and facilitating participatory assemblies across the country through the 2020s. After attending a Citizens' Assembly, people felt heard and empowered to prioritise projects with deep community impact through radical collaboration. By 2030 CoE had spawned 89 self-organising bioregional hubs, deepening the national capability of systems change and participatory democracy.

Summary of solution

This project pilots a series of community assemblies in one bioregion, so that community decision making processes can be examined, refined and showcased as a critical element within building regenerative societies. Bioregional governance entails societies living in reciprocity with local places, their ecosystems and bio-geo-physical realities. Organising human societies to bioregions allows for better custodianship of our lands and waters - something First Peoples’ communities have been doing for 60,000+ years.

The project aims to facilitate the development of a distributed power structure and mechanisms to help regenerate lands, waters and environments, to ensure that living systems, citizens, First Peoples’ perspectives and future generations are at the centre of decision-making processes. Building upon participatory democracy and systemic design processes, collaborators will harness knowledge about ecosystems, catchments, bioregions, comprehensive systems maps and future scenarios to aid decision making, deepening regenerative capability.

Why is this solution innovative

This project puts community at the centre of decision making, visibly distributing power and responsibilities. Innovative ways of organising are an important leverage point for systems change and can have a transformational impact. This project can play an integral role in developing new collaborative governance models that will enable genuine community power-sharing in the regenerative economy, disrupting long-established, unhealthy power dynamics. Community participants will experience transformational changes, including empowerment and self determination, and the trust developed between community members will build resilience and increased well-being. This project will provide a knowledge base for the development of innovative new business and financing models to unlock the regenerative economy and fund the establishment and operation of the Hubs.

This initiative epitomises regenerative innovation - it is a bottom-up, community owned and led process to create more regenerative places.