Fifteen years ago, community engagement was a fringe profession; the domain of a few passionate experts. Cynics described engagement as a fad.
But today, the profession has become mainstream. And the Australasian affiliate of the International Association for Public Participation is now the largest affiliate in the world, and considered by many globally as being the world leaders in the field.
So the question is, where are the jobs now and where will they be in the future.
Based on who is investing in IAP2 training, who is creating frameworks and who is entering awards, here’s our assessment:
Jobs today – the bulk of jobs are in local government, state government, government owned corporations and large infrastructure projects where there’s an obvious impact on the community. Key industry sectors are infrastructure, construction, mining and utilities. Communities are expecting engagement and rightly so.
Jobs tomorrow – we are likely to see more jobs in health, aged care, and education, as more government policies are introduced expecting that the private sector will engage.