Regional Development Strategy

The Southland Mayoral Forum asked us to lead a consulting team to develop a comprehensive regional strategy and action plan for the region (the Southland Regional Development Strategy - SoRDS).

We collaborated with the Regional Governance Group for more than a two-year period to develop the strategy, aiming to realise major areas of development potential, including tourism and visitor services.

Through broad-based analysis and stakeholder engagement, we developed an initial strategy document which gave top-line direction. We then formulated the detailed action plan which is now guiding implementation, the various elements of which are being implemented by local agencies, including Venture Southland.

Our involvement continues today through the process of designing the institutional arrangements necessary to carry the SoRDS programme and broader regional development priorities through to implementation.


  • Developing the strategy for economic growth, vibrant communities, a better lifestyle and improved health, education and social services in Southland

  • Continuing support on the structural and institutional arrangements to enable delivery


  • Analysis – input from economic data and extensive stakeholder interviews

  • Strategy – defining opportunities and enablers

  • Communications – strategic internal and external communications and issues management

  • Facilitation – building consensus on strategy across broad interest groups including business, iwi, local and central government and other key stakeholders

  • Collaboration – with the Mayoral Forum and agencies such as Venture Southland