The 2012 National Landcare Conference was held in held in Sydney from 3-5 September. Nearly 600 delegates attended the conference, in addition to 250 people that watched it online.

Conference delegates and key Landcare stakeholders provided feedback that they found the conference highly beneficial and professionally delivered. They also indicated that the conference was a success in celebrating and energising the Landcare community through its forward-looking approach.

The 2012 National Landcare Awards and the Bob Hawke Landcare Award were presented at a gala dinner on 4 September, with approximately 850 guests in attendance. Anecdotal feedback from guests indicates that the awards night was a great success and a highlight of the conference.

A report PDF pdf.gif [1.49 MB] word.gif Word [1.39 MB] was prepared to capture and distil the sentiments expressed by conference delegates through formal feedback mechanisms and informally through social and other media. The suggestions and lessons learned can be used by the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry and other organisations in the proactive planning of future Landcare conferences.

An evaluation form was completed by over 200 of the conference delegates. A summary of some of the feedback is provided below.

  • The overwhelming majority of participants were satisfied to very satisfied with their experience at the 2012 National Landcare Conference.
  • Almost all delegates said they would apply learnings they had gained from the conference in their day to day lives.
  • Eight field trips were held on day one of the conference. Over 70 per cent of respondents were very satisfied or satisfied with the relevance of their field trip. The Landcare on the Hawksebury trip was the most popular, followed by the Mountain Adventure.
  • Five plenary sessions were held during the conference. These sessions consisted of a presentation by each panel member followed by a question and answer period.  The plenary sessions rated especially well with conference delegates given their ability to connect sustainable agriculture to food production, the evolution of Landcare, and the links that can be generated between urban and rural dwellers and the role Landcare can play in this.
  • The Legacy presentation by Dr David Suzuki and the Landcare to Lunchbox panel session both received a satisfaction rate of almost 95 per cent.
  • The concurrent sessions delegates found most relevant and engaging were the Beyond Reasonable Drought presentation by New Zealand farmer Doug Avery and Engaging the 20 somethings in Landcare session by Ella Maesepp.
  • Many delegates commented that they learned a lot from the sessions and were encouraged and inspired by the energy and optimism of the speakers. In particular, there were many positive comments regarding international presentations.
  • Almost 70 per cent of delegates felt the Landcare Awards nominee concurrent sessions were a useful addition to the conference and felt that they should have been a more prominent element of the conference.
  • Many conference delegates highlighted the important networking opportunity the conference provided. They believed this could be enhanced by arranging small group, topic or region specific discussion sessions.
  • Almost all participants that attended the conference indicated that they will attend a future National Landcare Conference. This statistic is a reflection of the success of the 2012 conference and also a strong indication that participants see the National Landcare Conference as a valuable experience.


Fantastic conference! Fantastic forums! Great speakers, I also loved the Q&A. The awards night was a great celebration of what is good in Landcare. Thanks for a great conference; I am looking forward to 2014!

Overall, a great conference — the best I’ve ever been to. Thanks to the organisers, they were friendly and did a great job.

Such incredible information and systems sharing! Food for thought and fuel for action!

Everybody involved was so keen to provide advice and information. The knowledge basis at this conference was astounding. The conference was an amazing experience, so fulfilling and uplifting, thank you.

I will be passing on my experiences and applying what I learnt with my Community. I found the information at the conference interesting and useful. 

[The conference] was a good opportunity to meet other people from all over Australia and the world who are all working towards a similar outcome. Great to be with like minded people to share experiences and new ways of doing things.

Many thanks for a great Conference.

Great job and well done. I feel inspired and reinvigorated in my purpose.

Great event! The panel sessions were brilliant, excellent two way energy and exchange. Very high quality speakers and well organised with a varied program.

It was great to have a bit of ‘celebrity’ sharing out conference, David Suzuki provided a very compelling call to action and reminded us of the basics, it was just perfect.

[The conference was] brilliant and I feel very lucky to have been part of this conference.

The wealth of knowledge and willingness to share. The enthusiasm gives that ‘charge’ to everybody there to ‘press on.

Great effort by all the Landcare red shirt crew. Outstanding commitment and help.

The conference was exceptional.

It was a really well organised, enjoyable even that allowed me to connect with people
I would have not otherwise had the opportunity to.

Well done, it was an Inspiring event that was well thought out. Wonderful speakers, I loved the panels.

There was such a positive vibe at the conference. The panel discussion format was really successful and allowed a wide range of relevant issues to be explored.

The conference organisers will endeavour to take all feedback on board for any future Landcare events and would like to thank everyone who attended for your enthusiasm and useful feedback. The full evaluation will be available soon.