Visionweek NZ 2020 - day two

Connecting NZ

Day two of #visionweekNZ highlighted the opportunities present in our tourism, technology and transport sectors to connect and create a future proof New Zealand. From new technological innovations in tourism that enables people to virtually bungy jump from their couch (if you haven’t done it yet, try it here!) to improved connectiveness in our technology and infrastructure sectors to enable better planned developments that address the needs of digital equity and lower carbon transport options.

COVID-19 is seen to provide a great opportunity to these sectors in enabling them to stop and reflect on past issues, lessons learnt during lockdown, and how they see the future of their sectors.

Although currently in survive mode, the tourism sector is embracing the opportunity to create a more sustainable tourism sector that reflects New Zealanders values including a larger emphasis on being more inclusive of community needs, a more restorative approach to nature and increased productivity.  One suggestion included moving from a profit-based, input-output model to a cooperative closed system model that is a partnership between community, environmental and industry groups.

Highlighted was the timing New Zealand is offered during COVID to rethink their infrastructure networks in tourism hotspots so that they better meet the needs of both the community and international tourists whether that be increased connectivity in mobile coverage or congestion on roads. The ability and willingness to reflect, learn and grow from experiences is the sign of resilience in an organisation/industry sector.

In technology, the focus is on how this newfound flexibility in how we work can be harnessed and integrated with wellbeing and physical connection to create a better work environment to all. This is along with utilising our innovation and creativity as entrepreneurial kiwis to develop new technologies that can be shared on a world stage, whether it is on or off planet (how many of you thought of the satellite networks that made it possible for your daily zoom calls?!). Innovation and people, two core tenants of a resilience paradigm, again at the forefront of conversations about our post COVID future.

The infrastructure sector is working towards being able to offer more choice of lower carbon options to communities either by the electrification of aviation and rail or by well thought out approach to developments to ensure there is a greater focus on being more walkable and community focussed. Also highlighted was the need within the sector to connect better and become less fragmented in order to produce more integrated solutions for New Zealand.

Many of these key lessons covered key resilience themes.  This included innovation and creativity to change what we were doing to what we want to do, breaking down silos and engaging in effective partnerships outside your own sectors to create more integrated approaches, and how we proactively position ourselves to meet the post-COVID future and ensure we are creating a New Zealand we want that is futureproof.


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