Committee For Melbourne

Committee For Melbourne
Committee for Melbourne
Type Incorporated Association
Founded 1985
Headquarters Melbourne, Australia
Key people Andrew MacLeod (CEO)
George Pappas (Chairman)
Website [1]

The Committee for Melbourne is a non-profit organisation based in Melbourne, Australia, made up of businesses and organisation. The Committee was founded in 1985 to bring together businesses, academia and non-profit organisations to do activities, networking, and policy advice to government. Its organisational aim is to keep Melbourne as one of the world’s most liveable cities.


Summary of achievements

The Committee has been responsible for major changes to Melbourne, such as the Melbourne Docklands development, and smaller programs such as the Melbourne City Circle Tram, Melbourne Green Rooves program,[1] Melbourne Open House, Melbourne's Moving Galleries[2] and many others.

The outcomes of the Committee for Melbourne come in three categories:

  • Private Sector Collaboration
  • Establishing Organisations, and
  • Shaping government policy.

Private sector collaboration

The Committee pushed to create more efficient links between existing freeways. City Link project was financed and overseen by a Committee-led initiative: Infrastructure Bonds.

A priority identified by the Committee's Higher Education Task-force was the need for greater integration between university and business sectors.

  • Melbourne Practicum Program was established in partnership with the University of Melbourne, to allow both high-achieving local and international graduate students to work on real projects in conjunction with local businesses to develop their skills and knowledge base.

The Committee identified the need to focus on attracting corporate headquarters and increasing international flights to Melbourne.

To encourage the retrofit of existing commercial buildings and tenancies to meet new green objectives.

  • Facilitated retrofit building workshops by providing The Committee for Melbourne members with information on how to reduce energy costs through behave change and retrofit measures.

Establishing organisations

  • The Future Focus Group was established in 1995. For the 15th year running, The Committee for Melbourne business leadership program for Melbourne’s future leaders is embodying The Committee for Melbourne 'ideas to outcomes' ethos with participants initiating and implementing, usually within two years, their own projects to make a tangible, positive difference to the city.

Victoria needed a facilitator to connect Victoria's biotechnology research institutes, public and private companies and service providers to promote the capabilities of this dynamic local biotech industry on a global basis.

  • BioMelbourne Network was initiated in 2001 and is now a 180 member network and self-sufficient. The network activities not only assist individual members, but helps shape government policy.

Melbourne should recognise and reward excellence and talent in literature, sculpture and music, by providing grants and bursaries to cultural institutions.

  • A Future Focus Group-led project developed in 1998-1999, the annual Melbourne Prize is one of Australia’s richest arts prizes in Urban Sculpture, Literature and Music; and following its third successful year. The Melbourne Prize is now independently run at the Victorian College of the Arts.

The Committee for Melbourne developed a proposal with the City of Melbourne focused specifically on the application of the Global Compact's principles and objectives within an urban context and it was entitled, 'The Melbourne Model'. This initiative was based on the notion of creating a neutral space for business, government and civil sectors to tackle seemingly intractable urban issues through collaboration and drawing together their unique and complementary skills.

  • Initiated in 2002 to serve as the Melbourne-based International Secretariat of the UN Global Compact Cities Programme and now partnered with RMIT University’s Global Cities Institute who has international research teams investigating various areas of urban management. The Cities Programme leads an international UN urban program currently involving over 12 cities around the world.

Young leaders wanted a free of charge event giving Melburnians and visitors to the city a rare opportunity to discover the often hidden and hard to access public and private buildings and spaces nestled in and around the city.

  • As a Future Focus Group-led project, the Melbourne Open House inaugural event was held on 20 July 2008, with more than 30,000 visits to eight buildings. The second Melbourne Open House, held on 19 July 2009, grew to 32 buildings and almost 51,000 visits. Melbourne Open House is now an incorporated not-for-profit association.

The Committee recognised a need for communication, education and incentive for the construction of green roofs in Melbourne.

  • The key deliverable of this Future Focus Group-led project called Growing Up, is the installation of a fully funded green roof on a CBD building at 131 Queen Street, Melbourne, to be completed by January 2010.
  • A Future Focus Group-led project, Moving Galleries secured long-term funding enabling it to evolve from a 'one-off' exhibition to into an ongoing non-profit initiative dedicated to promoting creativity in Melbourne’s public spaces.

The Committee for Melbourne wanted to increase awareness and understanding of South East Australian Indigenous culture in Melbourne through art, and in so doing, help create 'PaRing' or pathways between Melbourne’s Indigenous and non-Indigenous cultures.

  • A Future Focus Group-led project PaRing Gallery and in partnership with the Koorie Heritage Trust, has staged four engaging exhibitions of Indigenous art and displayed them in the foyers of some of The Committee for Melbourne major companies in the central business district for approximately four weeks at a time.

Shaping government policy

Melbourne’s traffic congestion alone is estimated to cost about $4 billion annually. Therefore, the Committee assembled an expert group, including senior representatives of all public transport modes, to recommend what is needed to achieve a positive change. The Committee for Melbourne Five Year Public Transport package sets out the Committee’s priorities for the period to 2011.

  • The State Government referred to The Committee for Melbourne plan and incorporated a few of The Committee for Melbourne recommendations into their report entitled, ‘Victorian Transport Plan’.

Explore the relationship between utility debt and poverty, and to identify social and regulatory frameworks and policies to assist people at risk.

  • The Utility Debt Spiral Project harnessed the expertise and involvement of business, government, regulators, and civil-society partners to examine and identify potential means of ameliorating the impact of electricity, gas and water bills as a direct cause of, or an exacerbating factor, in the debt spiral.

The Committee wanted to raise Melbourne’s image as a tourist centre.

  • Supported the creation of the free City Circle tram line specifically for tourists.

The Committee wanted to raise Melbourne’s image as a liveable city.

The Committee was passionate about the idea of marketing Melbourne as a water front city with the Docklands as the central focus. The Committee invited Reg Ward, Chief Executive of the London Docklands Development Corporation to assess the site for Melbourne’s Docklands.

  • This led to a joint venture with the Labor government to commission the 'Recommendations to Government' document. The Committee was the initial driver of the Docklands development and appointed the Melbourne Docklands Authority in 1990.

United Nations Global Compact

The Committee for Melbourne was the first global headquarters of the United Nations Global Compact.[3]

Melbourne Achiever Award

The Committee for Melbourne gives the prestigious Melbourne Achiever awards. Past winners have included: Rob Adams Christine Nixon and the Royal Children's Hospital, Melbourne and many others.


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