BHP + Shire of East Pilbara

Newman Charts Inclusive Future

  • Research
  • Strategy + Design
  • Engagement
  • Placemaking + Activation
  • Communications
  • Donna Shepherd AM
  • Allan Tranter

A shared vision to build a diverse, sustainable and inclusive economy.

The challenge

A new economic era is emerging in the Pilbara as the adoption of technology changes production patterns, business models and the nature of work. Amid this transformation, Creating Communities joined with BHP, the Shire of East Pilbara and Newman stakeholders to co-design a strategy for building a sustainable, inclusive economy. The strategy was launched in November 2019 after more than 600 consultations, meetings and events resulted in broad endorsement of a new way forward.

Stakeholders from all sectors and all parts of the community explored how changes in the local economy and to the nature of work could be capitalised on for the benefit of the whole community.

The outcomes

Our engagement process resulted in broad agreement to find new ways of working together. The Newman Futures Common Agenda and Roadmap were produced as a result of the engagement process and collaboration to implement the many initiatives is now under way.

Important to the process was the involvement of indigenous partners, the Martu and Nyiyaparli, and listening to the voices of young people in the community.

All parties committed to working together to embrace the opportunities that innovation, technology and disruption present. This commitment is embodied in the statement “Why Not Newman?” that emerged during consultation.

For more information, please visit:

Key Milestones

More than 60 meetings, workshops and briefings facilitated.

More than 300 face-to-face interactions with stakeholders and local leaders.

9 successful Newman Futures conversation lunches with local and regional leaders.

Communication campaign, including website, monthly newsletter to all houses and businesses in Newman, email and social media posts via the Shire of East Pilbara.


  • Newman Futures strategy – over 300 face-to-face consultations
  • Launch of the strategy – attended by about 90 representatives of the Newman community
  • Quick win activities, including youth hackathon, meet the buyer sessions for BHP, technology training for students and production of the film Youth Voices
  • Broad communications - monthly hard copy newsletter, EDM, website
  • Positive media coverage (North West Telegraph, National Indigenous Times, The West Australian) of the process, quick wins and strategy development which helped to counter some of the more negative coverage elsewhere
  • Graphic design for Newman Futures brand

  • BHP
  • Shire of East Pilbara
  • Traditional owner groups
  • Service providers and community groups
  • Newman Chamber of Commerce and Industry
  • Government agencies
  • Mining support businesses
  • Not-for-profits and charities

Other Case Studies