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There’s no escape: we are always in relationship. Being aware of this matters. Doing something to build constructive relationships for sustainability, matters even more.
This paper considers the connection between good relationships and effective sustainability work in local government. It draws on the collective experiences of four practitioners who have worked over many years in, with or for local government and argues that a good deal of project success is contingent upon the development of positive relationships with stakeholders, contractors, communities, businesses, colleagues, partners and other agencies and agency officers.
Relationships can help or hinder project process, progress and outcomes. This paper identifies some approaches for building quality relationships and uses examples to highlight these strategies. These include: recognising that developing and maintaining resilient relationships and high quality communication is a critical foundation for success; designing projects with explicit relationship outcomes; and allocating time, money and other resources to support the development of effective relationships.
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