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Breaking the Cycle of Capital Extraction

by | Jun 24, 2024 | Uncategorised

By Meaghan Burkett

Australia faces significant challenges, including rising living costs, housing availability and
affordability, stagnant household incomes, infrastructure and service deficiencies and the
imperative shift to renewable energy and circular economies. Moreover, there is a pressing
need to address disadvantage and inequity, regenerate our environment and prepare our
country for future uncertainties.

These burdens fall heavily on local families, small businesses, communities and places. Our
research shows that Australian communities want to tackle the economic, social and
environmental challenges they face. They desire greater control and influence over local
assets, services, investment, development, and other socio-economic activity. While
possessing ambitious ideas, aspirations and lived expertise, they often struggle to access
the finance and resources essential for implementation and are heavily dependent on
external support. They report that current capital systems fail to support place based action,
perpetuating these issues. Existing systems concentrate wealth, limit ownership, and exploit
local assets, hindering community needs and stifling local agency, investment, innovation,
and resilience.

We want to move from extractive forms of value exchange to ones that enable local people
to have a stake, be part of shaping their communities and share in part of the wealth that is
generated.” Place Based Capital Network Member

Various other stakeholders, including government, business, impact investors,
philanthropists and the for-purpose sector invest billions annually to address these
challenges. However, they often fail to achieve desired outcomes, recognising the
importance of place based and community-led solutions, but lacking effective structures and
practices to make a significant impact on the ground.

A common thread in these challenges is capital – both financial capital, such as money or
financial assets available for investment, expenditure and production; and capital assets
such as land, natural resources, buildings, businesses, facilities, infrastructure, equipment,
inventory, and intellectual property. Capital is crucial for driving economic activity, promoting
prosperity, and improving living standards and wellbeing. It enables efficient resource
allocation, risk management, and the pursuit of development opportunities, fuelling
innovation, entrepreneurship and dreams.

Australia, one of the world’s wealthiest nations – with ‘golden soil and wealth for toil’ –
possesses significant capital across various sectors. Mobilising this capital effectively and
purposefully is key to addressing our collective challenges and forging a more regenerative,
equitable and prosperous society. To do so, we must rethink capital ownership, control, and
usage. We need a capital system that prioritises local people, inclusion, equality, purposeful
ownership, governance, and place based reinvestment. This system should drive collective
prosperity, wellbeing, and regeneration.

There are existing solutions that demonstrate the feasibility of such a system. Widespread
awareness, adoption and scaling of these solutions across Australia will empower local
places and people to take meaningful action.

This work is underway! Launched in 2023, the Place Based Capital Initiative is
collaboratively scaling Place Based Capital through a network of Places and Partners across
Australia and has already made a positive, demonstrable impact.

Interested Places & Partners are invited to join this network and play their part in creating
this future.

For more information:

View our Partner & Investment Proposal 2024 – 2030

Contact the Place Based Capital Team via email [email protected] or mobile 0407
024 036.