The People Project: Susan Davis, Ginninderry Community and Cultural Planning Manager

In this series, we profile the passionate individuals making some of the world's best sustainability developments happen.

How does your role help bring Ginninderry to life?

Part of my job is about working with the community, both new and existing to help develop and deliver essential services and facilities. My role also involves cultural planning which is about finding ways to bring creativity in all its forms into the development, including public art, environmental art, the performing arts and creative placemaking.  

What are some of the biggest roadblocks you’ve faced along the way?

There really haven’t been any roadblocks – the community and the whole team at Ginninderry recognise the value of community cultural development and I have had nothing but support and encouragement.

What aspects of Ginninderry are you most proud of?

I am really proud of the work that we have been able to do with local Aboriginal people developing projects that support their creative expression and their culture. I am also really proud that Ginninderry was chosen by Creativity Australia as the first ACT With One Voice Choir; a choir that welcomes everyone no matter how much singing experience they have had. And I am really proud of a group of Year 9 students at Kingsford Smith School who have been working with us on an Open Space Planning project. Their commitment and great ideas have been truly inspiring.

What have you learnt so far from being involved in the project?

My job at Ginninderry has totally reinforced the Golden Rule that the best ideas come from the people in the community. You just need to really listen to them.

Who did you work closely with on this project?

I work very closely with many community groups including local schools, the Aboriginal community, the arts community, environmental groups and community service providers. I also get a huge amount of inspiration from my Ginninderry colleagues. We love to bounce ideas around and work together where our roles intersect.

What are you most excited about for the project?

I think it’s incredibly exciting to be involved in community and cultural development for a project like this and as far as I can tell this is quite unique. Ginninderry is setting a benchmark and its very exciting to be part of this genuine commitment to cultural planning and community capacity building.