Regional Development Australia - Wheatbelt
An Australian Government Initiative
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Wheatbelt Digital Action Plan 2017

The revision of the 2013 plan has been released

The results of the RDA Wheatbelt 2017 survey illustrated people’s utilisation of digital technology has become more gradually nuanced and sophisticated as specialised technologies have become available or more user friendly. An indication of this is the uptake of weed/pest/disease management apps within the agribusiness sector. In 2012, these apps were not available but in the intervening years the availability of the apps has moved from non-existent or highly limited to widespread, generating a parallel consumer demand that was reflected by the 75% of agribusiness participants that were using the products.
 
Business participants exhibited a mounting awareness of the constraints that the less than adequate digital connectivity imposes on their businesses. The same could be said from an education standpoint with a sizeable proportion of parents indicating that reliable digital connectivity influenced their decision on where their children would complete secondary schooling. Their response suggests the concept that poor connectivity is contributing to the migration of school and post school age youth from the Wheatbelt to the city. Therefore it could be plausible, as participants responses suggested, that better and more reliable connectivity would go some way to reducing the levels of education migration in the region.
 
In essence, digital telecommunications are effectively the 21st century equivalent of the rail and road networks and are or could be delivering the same economic and social impacts to the region that rail and road delivered in the 19th and 20th centuries. That being the case, any shortcomings or inadequacies in the digital delivery systems has the potential to negate the best efforts of the Wheatbelt’s business owners and other invested stakeholders to develop and expand businesses, create employment and drive population growth in the region. Therefore it remains incumbent on RDAW, WDC and other government organisations along with all levels of government with vested interests in the Wheatbelt to facilitate the funding and investment needed to ensure the region has reliable digital connection.

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Social Media

Want to stay up-to-date with all the news and happenings in the Wheatbelt? Connect with @RDAWheatbelt via Twitter and network with people from all over the region. Social Media enables like-minded people to communicate instantaneously and share relevant, local updates to an engaged online audience.

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Resources

Need some help getting online? Navigate to Internet Basics for easy how to guides, videos and glossary terms.

The Digital Business website provides information that may assist you, with simple and practical tips on what your business or community organisation could be doing online and how you can do it.

Broadband for Seniors helps senior Australians get the skills they need to use computers and access the Internet.

ThinkUKnow is an Internet safety program delivering interactive training to parents, carers and teachers through schools and organisations across Australia using a network of accredited trainers from our partner agencies. There are two versions of the website - for Parents, Carers and Teachers or for Young people, 11-17 years old.

Stay Smart Online is the Australian Government's online safety and security website, designed to help everyone understand the risks and the simple steps we can take to protect our personal and financial information online.

Learn more about the National Broadband Network and what it means for you, your business and your community.

Digital Careers is a collaborative initiative of industry, research, primary, secondary, and tertiary institutions (universities and TAFE), and government, focused on reducing the critical shortage of Australian ICT professionals.

The Department of Communications website provides access to information about the structure and operations of the Department, with links to key reporting documents and to information on career options and employment benefits.

Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) website featuring information for Citizens connecting online and staying protected online.

The Mobile Black Spot Programme is an Australian Government initiative to extend mobile phone coverage and competition in regional Australia.

Learn about what safety measures are in place for electromagnetic energy (EME) transmitted via radio waves in everyday telecommunications tools such as mobile phones, remote controls, TV and radio.

If you suspect you have been scammed, visit the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission's Scamwatch website or phone the ACCC at 1300 302 502 during business hours.

Telework

RDA Wheatbelt supports the Australian Government’s aim to increase the number of people who Telework to 12 per cent by 2020. To highlight the benefits of Telework RDA Wheatbelt participated in a case study that can be viewed on this YouTube video.