Harris Centre Regional Workshop – Port Blandford

Lay Summary 

Regional Workshops offer the opportunity for Memorial University faculty, staff and students to meet with regional stakeholders, in order to discuss topics of mutual interest. The purpose of a Regional Workshop is to explore ways of creating sustainable social and economic regions, and to identify possible future opportunities for research, teaching and outreach.

This workshop had two goals: promote Memorial University as a resource for regional policy and development throughout the province; and stimulate discussion to generate future opportunities for collaboration in the areas of research, teaching and outreach within the region, between Memorial University and community stakeholders.

The Harris Centre Memorial Presents/Regional Workshop was held March 15-16, 2012. The planning partners were Discovery Regional Development Board (Zone 15) and the Rural Secretariat.

On the evening of March 15, 2012, the Harris Centre hosted a ‘Memorial Presents’ public policy forum titled: “Business Clusters and Regional Development: Fact or Fashion?”” at Tricentia Academy in Arnold’s Cove. The keynote speaker was Dr. Rob Greenwood, from the Harris Centre and Dr. Alvin Simms, Department of Geography at Memorial University. The session provided a way of understanding regional development and how businesses and communities need to collaborate to succeed. It also demonstrated a new on-line tool, the Regional Economic Capacity Index, to highlight interactions between communities and how an understanding of their relative strengths will enhance the chance for all to succeed.

The presentations were followed by an audience question and answer session and a reception. The event was attended by twenty-eight people.

Sixty-five people attended the ‘Regional Workshop’ held March 16, 2012. Attendees included representatives from Memorial, community-based organizations, municipalities, business and provincial government. Presentations on Memorial services and departments were given by Rob Greenwood, Director of the Harris Centre; Karen Kennedy, Director of the Division of Lifelong Learning and Bojan Fürst, Manager of Knowledge Mobilization with the Harris Centre. The group also learned more about the Discovery Zone through a presentation by Chad Holloway, Executive Director of the Discovery Regional Development Board.

The Rural Secretariat held a special lunchtime session on assessing the social impacts of industrial development. This focused on the preliminary research findings from researcher Michelle Porter, in her study of the “Social Impacts of Industrial Development within the Clarenville-Isthmus region.”

Participants broke into three themed groups: Tourism; Labour Issues and Changing Demographics; and Ocean Based Wealth Generation. Twenty follow-up opportunities were identified at the workshop. These will be developed into one-page opportunities through further discussion and collaboration with the region.

A report on this workshop is available at:
[url] http://www.mun.ca/harriscentre/regionalworkshops/Discovery_RW_Final_Repo...

The Leslie Harris Centre of Regional Policy and Development
Memorial University
RBC Blue Water Project
NL Rural Secretariat
Port Blandford
Arnold's Cove
Sunnyside, Trinity Bay
Newfoundland and Labrador
Rural Development
Tourism and Recreation
Business development
Industry Sectors 
Provincial and Territorial Public Administration
Fishing, Hunting and Trapping
Start date 
1 Jan 2012