Roger Blakeley

Roger Blakeley

Roger Blakeley circle2EquiP is proud to introduce Dr Roger Blakeley as an Associate. Roger brings is backed by considerable experience, which includes:

  • Chief Planning Officer, Auckland Council, 2010 – 2015;
  • Chief Executive, Porirua City Council, 2000 – 2010;
  • Chief Executive, Department of Internal Affairs, including roles of Secretary for Local Government and Secretary for Civil Defence, 1995 - 2000;
  • Chief Executive, Ministry for the Environment and Secretary for the Environment, 1986 - 1995; and
  • General Manager, State Coal Mines. 1984 – 86.

Roger has also held international roles such as:

  • Chair of the Environment Committee of the OECD, one of the eight top committees of the OECD based in Paris, 1992 - 1995;
  • Personally invited member of International Advisory Committee to New York on the next New York Plan, 2013 - 15.

"I am a very experienced Director, and have served on boards of Crown Entities (Fire Service Commission, Lotteries Commission, Hillary Commission), Joint Government/Council Board (Interim Tamaki Redevelopment Company), Community Trust Boards (Chair, Digital Porirua, Chair, Porirua City Community IT Education Trust), Limited Companies (WRC Holdings Ltd, Port Investments Ltd, Greater Wellington Rail Ltd). I am a member of the New Zealand Institute of Directors."

A brief snapshot of consulting services that Roger could offer to the local government sector
  • Resource Management Planning: I led at CE-level the development of the Resource Management Act (RMA) between 1987 and 1991, and I have expertise in planning under the RMA. I led at Chief Planning Officer-level the development of the Auckland Unitary Plan between 2011 and 2015.

"I can advise councils on RMA provisions, and processes to successfully deliver complex planning challenges with high levels of community engagement and in a manner that is ‘fast, simple, bold and innovative’."

  • Spatial Planning, Housing, Infrastructure, Transport and Funding: I led at Chief Planning Officer-level the Auckland (regional spatial) Plan between 2010 and 2012. This has been cited as world-best-practice in regional spatial planning, with integrated land use and infrastructure/transport strategy, and economic, social, environmental and cultural objectives over 30 years. This included a capital investment plan for $65 billion of infrastructure. I am a specialist in the Local Government Act, 2002, since I led at Secretary for Local Government-level the policy and legislative development for that Act between 1995 and 2000, and have been closely involved in changes to the Act since. I co-chaired an officials group from Auckland Council and central government, which advised the Mayor of Auckland and Minister for Housing on the Auckland Housing Accord, 2013. The principles of that Accord were incorporated in the Housing Accords and Special Housing Areas Act 2013.

"I can advise councils on integrated spatial planning, infrastructure/transport and funding strategy. My advice is based on deep knowledge of the Resource Management Act, 1991, Local Government Act 2002, Land Transport Management Act 2003, and subsequent amendments to those acts, and how those acts work together. I can advise on planning for Special Housing Areas to facilitate fast-paced delivery of land use zoning and bulk service infrastructure to meet market demands for housing. I can advise on new and innovative approaches to funding infrastructure and services, including use of market- and incentive-based tools, efficient and flexible pricing of infrastructure and service delivery, demand management and private sector participation, and how these tools can be applied through a long-term, sustainable financial strategy."

  • Economic Development: I led at Chief Executive-level the programmes for strategic economic development of Porirua City, including the planning for major land and housing development of the Aotea Block by Carrus Corporation. I was one of a group of Chief Executives that provided executive leadership for the development of the ‘Wellington Regional Strategy 2012 - Growing a Sustainable Economy’, including a focus on: commercialisation of innovation, attracting international investment, building world-class infrastructure, attracting business, investment and talent to the region, education and workforce development, and ensuring councils are ‘open for business’. I led at Chief Planning Officer-level Auckland’s Economic Development Strategy, 2012. The five priorities are: 1. Grow a business-friendly and well-functioning city; 2. Develop an innovation hub of the Asia-Pacific rim; 3. Become internationally connected and export-driven; 4. Enhance investment in people to grow skills and local workforce; 5. Develop a creative, vibrant international city.

"I can advise councils on an economic development strategy appropriate to their region, city or district; mechanisms for engagement of business, iwi, community and government in developing the strategy; actions; practical implementation plan; measures of success; and monitoring of progress."

  • Community Engagement: When I was CE of Porirua City Council, I received a visit from the chair of the Plimmerton Residents’ Association with a proposition for a community-led visioning process. And so began what has been called the ‘Porirua Village Planning Programme’. It has involved Residents’ Associations from across the city developing and implementing plans, in their own way, to reflect the distinctive identity of their village. It has had strong support from council with funding through the Long-term Plan and officer support. In 2010, Porirua won three Gold Standard awards at the International Liveable Communities Awards in Chicago. Porirua was singled out by the international panel of judges as a world leader in the way it works together as a community to make good things happen for its people and environment. The Porirua Village Planning programme won first place in the socio-economic section of the Environmentally Sustainable Project Awards. The judges said: “It is a ground-breaking partnership between the city council and the community it serves”.

"I can advise councils on ways to achieve high levels of community engagement, through processes of community empowerment and community –led planning and action. This approach benefits from the local knowledge and passions of the people in the community. Conflicting views can be resolved, by local leadership and collaboration with all groups that are affected."

  • Climate Change: When I was CE of Ministry for the Environment, I initiated the New Zealand Climate Change programme. I supported the Minister for the Environment Simon Upton at the First Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change in Berlin in 1995 - a process which eventually led to the ‘Paris Agreement’ at the Conference of the Parties (COP) 21 in Paris in December 2015. I have provided leadership in both mitigation and adaptation measures. In May 2016, I published a paper: “Policy Framework for New Zealand to Transition to a Low-Carbon Economy” in the Policy Quarterly of Victoria University’s School of Government. I provided Chief Planning Officer-leadership on adaptation measures within the Auckland Plan and Auckland Unitary Plan, including future development of land for housing, business and infrastructure being located away from coastal and low-lying areas vulnerable to sea level rise.

"I can advise councils on measures at the regional, city or district-level to build resilience to the effects of climate change, while sustainably growing the economy. This includes adaptation to climate change and sea level rise, management of flood risks, resilience of infrastructure, the built environment, the natural environment and communities." 

  • Building Community Resilience: I was New Zealand’s Secretary of Civil Defence from 1995 to 2000. I chaired the Wellington Region Civil Defence EmergencyManagement Officers’ Group from 2009 to 2010. In 2016, I was commissioned by the New Zealand Society of Local Government Managers (SOLGM) to prepare a report on building community resilience as a key consideration for local authorities as they undertake their day-to-day work, and to introduce the concepts of resilience thinking to managers and staff in local authorities. This report was complementary to the work by LGNZ on establishing the Local Government Risk Management Agency.

"I can advise councils on the concepts of ‘resilience’, defined by the Rockefeller Foundation’s ‘100 Resilient Cities’ report as : “Resilience is what enables people to survive, adapt and thrive in the face of shocks (such as earthquakes) and chronic stresses (such as climate change)”. I can illustrate the concept with practical examples, from the Canterbury earthquakes to Hurricane Sandy’s impact on New York. I can advise on the leadership role of local authorities in helping build community resilience, working in collaboration with government, business, communities, iwi, civil society, the social sector, science and research institutes. The benefits of such leadership will be the safety and wellbeing of communities, and saving money in future Long-term Plans, through investment decisions now that avoid or mitigate  future costs of short-sighted infrastructure or land use decisions, or the costs of major recovery to shock events."

  • Advice to Mayor/Council on Strategy and Performance Management: I have had 26 years’ experience as a CE in central and local government. I also have extensive governance experience over 20 years. As a result I have a deep knowledge of the demands on both governance and management.

"I can advise the Mayor and Council to support them in their relationship with the Chief Executive on matters of strategy, governance responsibilities, setting of objectives and performance management, with the objective of achieving optimum performance of the council for its community."

Please contact the EquiP team for further information on 04 924 1200 or email 

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