2020 NZPI Conference Postponement

17 March 2020


The Values/Voices/Vision conference was to be held in Nelson from 31 March to 3 April. The NZPI Board has made the difficult decision to postpone the Conference. This was largely driven by yesterday’s Government announcement calling for the cancellation of all non-essential mass gatherings of more than 500 people. The Board fully anticipated that the Conference would have attracted more than 500 people, and in the interests of the health and safety of delegates, speakers, sponsors and staff, the decision to postpone our 2020 conference will, we hope, assist the efforts to limit the spread of COVID19. We are grateful that the Nelson/Marlborough Branch appreciate the ramifications to our industry and our profession’s reputation and support the postponement wholeheartedly.

While the Branch and local Tangata Whenua are disappointed to be unable to welcome you to their region this year they are pleased to support the Institute in announcing that we are now working towards holding the conference in Nelson in 2021. We’ve set a date of 23 March to 26 March, 2021.

The conference was shaping up to be one of our best yet, with a great line up of speakers progressing the conversation about how we manage the challenge of respecting and responding to our country’s increasingly diverse communities. Climate change, water quality, open ocean aquaculture and housing were also high on the agenda.

While it is extremely disappointing our event will not be going ahead as planned, we’re sure you will understand that we could not accept the risk it potentially presented to the profession we champion to put a large number of our members in an enclosed venue for 3 days given the current situation with COVID19. We all need to play our part to reduce the risk of the virus spreading. The situation continues to evolve and it is important we take a precautionary approach.

Where and when will the postponed conference be held?
We are planning to hold NZPI’s 2021 conference in Nelson from Tuesday 23 March to Friday 26 March 2021. We are currently exploring whether Christchurch can then host the subsequent Conference in 2022.

Given the conference has been postponed do I get a refund for my registration?
As a membership-based organisation, our first preference is that delegates transfer their 2020 registration to the 2021 event. However, we appreciate some of you will require a refund. Please email admin@planning.org.nz if you would like your registration refunded.

I was really looking forward to the programme, what happens to this for 2021?
While the 2020 programme featured a range of great speakers, we recognise that we live in changing times. We will therefore review the keynote and workshop sessions to ensure all topics and speakers are still relevant in 2021.

What happens to the 2020 National Awards for Planning Excellence?
Judging of the Awards is complete. We are now evaluating options to ensure finalists and winners receive the recognition they deserve and will provide an update soon.

What does this mean for the NZPI AGM?
We are currently investigating options to hold the AGM as an interactive, online streaming session. Once we confirm details we will distribute the AGM invite and associated papers.

What does this mean for other NZPI events?
The Government is expected to provide further guidance about smaller events later this week, which will help us determine how we NZPI will manage scheduled CPD events during the next three months. We will also advise any temporary changes to member CPD requirements that result from the decision to cancel the conference or any of the currently scheduled CPD events.

NZPI appreciates this decision may inconvenience our conference delegates. We value your understanding as we navigate the best way to keep our profession healthy and productive.

We hope that you will join us in Nelson in 2021.

Please don’t hesitate to email any additional questions to admin@planning.org.nz or phone the NZPI office on 09 520 6277.