Future Melbourne 2026 is a community collaboration project to develop a long-term strategic plan for the municipality of Melbourne. The Melbourne municipality is the heart of greater Melbourne and covers the central city and 16 inner city suburbs.

The aim of Future Melbourne 2026 is to ensure Melbourne’s legacy as a liveable and competitive city over the coming decade. The plan’s vision, goals and priorities will be refreshed to reflect the global changes, challenges and opportunities our city will face over the coming decade.

The City of Melbourne appointed six leading Melburnians to be ambassadors for the refresh of Future Melbourne. The Future Melbourne Ambassadors are leading and guiding the process to engage the community to carry out the refresh.

The refresh of the Future Melbourne 2008 plans involves the following three phases:

  1. Community sharing their ideas on the city’s future.
  2. Bringing these ideas together.
  3. Citizens’ jury deliberating on the community’s ideas.

This report deals with the second phase of bringing the community’s ideas together.

The City of Melbourne appointed Global Research to bring the community’s ideas together and create an independent synthesis report that compares these to the existing Future Melbourne 2008 goals and priorities.


The City of Melbourne’s Future Melbourne 2008 plan has guided all aspects of the city’s development, prosperity and liveability.

Developed by the community in 2008, the plan includes a vision for Melbourne as a bold, inspirational and sustainable global city.

It is supported by the six primary goals highlighted below, and 33 secondary goals, now referred to as priorities.

Future Melbourne 2008 goals
  • A city for people
  • A creative city
  • A prosperous city
  • A city of knowledge
  • An eco-city
  • A connected city

Community sharing their ideas on the city’s future – the Ideas phase

From 1 February to 31 March 2016, the City of Melbourne invited Melbourne’s community: its businesses, institutions, residents, students, visitors and workers to share their ideas to help develop the refreshed plan.

Through the engagement, people could share and debate their ideas and their thoughts on the Future Melbourne vision and goals. As well as adding their own ideas, they would also comment on, and support/not support the ideas that other people had posted.

Face-to-face workshops, forums, seminars and the interactive Future Melbourne website and survey were the key community engagement tools. A range of thought leaders — including the Future Melbourne ambassadors — informed and stimulated the development of these ideas.

By the end of the ideas phase, the community had produced 970 ideas for the Future of Melbourne and submitted 350 surveys. More than 2000 people also joined the conversation at 31 events. The community engagement process included events for the culturally and linguistically diverse people, Aboriginal people, senior citizens, children, young people, people with a disability and disability groups.

The ideas, comments on ideas and surveys resulted in over 4,500 points being made on the Future Melbourne 2008 Goals and Priorities.

All of the ideas generated at the events were shared on the Future Melbourne website

The diagram on the following page illustrates the community engagement process during the ideas phase.

Each of the face-to-face activities posed key questions to attendees. Below is a sample of questions for the activities.

  • What’s your big idea for the future of Melbourne?
  • What does a digital future look like for Melbourne? How do we get there? What are the opportunities and priorities?
  • Thinking of our future economy, can we improve opportunities for innovation, creativity and entrepreneurship in Melbourne? What are the opportunities and priorities?
  • How should we address climate change into the future? What are the opportunities and priorities?
  • How do you see Melbourne addressing growth and density into the future? What are the opportunities and priorities?
  • How do you see citizens and government working together into the future? What are the opportunities and priorities?