Excellence in Local Government Leadership Program

Governing for the future: Leading the innovative council

The Excellence in Local Government Leadership Program (ELGLP) was specifically designed for senior local government executives and elected members as a joint initiative between ANZSOG and the Australian Centre of Excellence for Local Government (ACELG).

From 2015 onwards, future iterations of the program are subject to further government funding. For further information, please email programs_team | at | anzsog.edu.au.

Program overview

The ELGLP challenged current leaders to set the agenda for local government reform in the 21st century. An emphasis was placed on strategic leadership; collaborative governance with other governments, citizens and stakeholders; and innovative service delivery.

The ELGLP tackled many of the fundamental questions confronting senior local government leaders who are seeking to build a culture of problem-solving at a local level. The program also considered the role local government can play in:

  • harnessing the resources of the community to collectively determine public value and to source and diffuse innovation
  • being a collaborator of first resort in local and regional policy and delivery networks
  • being a learning organisation and knowledge broker
  • being an employer of choice.

Crucially, this program involved understanding local government as an engine room of economic growth and public value creation. The aim is to provide leaders with a dynamic forum for building networks and a shared commitment to delivering world-class local governance.


  • understanding policy contexts and building strong working relationships
  • leading and managing change and forging a strong CEO-Mayor relationship
  • creating and delivering public value
  • understanding localism
  • problem solving in multi-level governance.

Strengthening local government leadership


  • gained an enhanced understanding of the interplay of the political, policy, demographic and social contexts facing local government
  • were exposed to the best of international and national academic and practitioner thinking and innovations
  • gained access to frameworks and knowledge designed to assist in unpacking complex problems
  • gained greater understanding of the dynamics between national, state and local governments
  • developed networks across Australia and New Zealand
  • explored emerging issues that affect local governments.

Program Director

The Program Director was Professor Mark Evans. Mark is the Director, Institute for Governance and Policy Analysis at the University of Canberra. He is a specialist in community governance and is a former local councillor.

Previous Presenters

Previous program presenters included Jude Munro, former CEO of Brisbane City Council, the Lord Mayor of Adelaide Stephen Yarwood, Professor Gerry Stoker of the University of Southhampton UK, Paul Porteous, Former Director of Leadership Development and International Programs, University of Canberra, and Professor Virginia Haussegger, ABC Canberra journalist and broadcaster. 

ANZSOG is a consortium partner of the Australian Centre of Excellence for Local Government.