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Brisbane Declaration on Community Engagement

The Brisbane Declaration drew on numerous definitions and aspirations for community engagement, including IAP2's core values and the Queensland Government's community engagement resources. A draft of the Declaration was reviewed and revised to reflect the feedback from the community of practitioners, academics, policy advisers, government and citizens who responded to a questionnaire. Importantly, there were also a number of deliberative sessions on the Declaration held during the 2005 International Conference on Engaging Communities. Feedback from these sessions was incorporated into the final version of the Declaration.

The process of developing the Declaration aimed to act as a catalyst for mobilising the global community and developing common understanding, shared visions and goals.

The Brisbane Declaration begins with…

We, representatives of countries and communities, including Indigenous peoples, international institutions, national, state and local governments, academic institutions, and business and civil society organizations from across the world, participating in the International Conference on Engaging Communities, held at Brisbane, Australia, from 15 to 17 August 2005,

  1. Acknowledge the universal interest and importance of community engagement, founded in the inherent dignity of people and the values, rights and responsibilities of all people expressed in the Universal Declaration on Human Rights.
  2. Welcome the Seoul Declaration on Participatory and Transparent Governance1 in its call for all actors2 in societies to work together to expand and prom ote participatory, transparent governance for the benefit of their people.
  3. Underscore that community engagement is essential to the achievement of the Millennium Declaration including the Millennium Goals for Development.
  4. Express appreciation for the efforts of the United Nations and its specialised agencies in helping to advance the practice of community engagement and support of greater participatory and transparent governance.
  5. Express appreciation to the Government of the State of Queensland, to the Indigenous peoples for their welcome to country, and to all the people of Queensland, Australia for hosting the inaugural International Conference on Engaging Communities.
  6. Express appreciation to the other Australian governments, tertiary institutions and organisations that have sponsored and partnered in the organisation of this gathering, to the staff and volunteers, and to all those who have through participation shared their expertise and experience to build greater understanding, capability and commitment to the practice of community engagement.

Among other things, the Declaration requests that the United Nations assists countries and communities to foster effective community engagement practices by supporting research and training, and documenting successful outcomes and disseminating these widely.

You can also go to www.engagingcommunities2005.org to learn more about the International Conference on Engaging Communities.

(2005)

Resource Link: www.ncdd.org/exchange/files/docs/brisbane_declaration.pdf

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