National Sports and Physical Activity Convention Program 2022

Conference Program

The NSC22 Conference Program is being developed with our key partners, collaborators and industry thought leaders to reflect the big issues and needs of the industry. By connecting the industry and developing a collective agenda, our aim is to provide global learnings, challenge national conversations and provide tools and good practice for local development. The NSC22 Conference Program is structured to achieve this.

The on-demand workshops and recordings of live sessions will remain available for delegates to watch in the Virtual Conference Portal until 31 December 2021, then they will be accessible through the NSC Academy.

Please view the full Program Overview further below for more information.

NSC Oration (Monday 11th July – 3.00pm-7.00pm)

Our globally recognised Orator will set the tone for NSC22 and provide inspirational insights and challenge what is possible over the next decade. This will be followed by a panel of thought leaders who will explore the challenge and what it means for community sport and physical activity in Australia. The NSC Oration will conclude with the 2022 National Sport, Recreation and Play Innovation Awards and industry networking.

Global and Keynote Thought Leader Sessions

Addressing the big issues and opportunities that face our industry will be explored with global and Australian thought leaders with the focus around our thinking and providing provocative and challenging propositions in three sessions. Learning from overseas when aligned with our context can allow us to make larger jumps forward.

We aim to connect the industry thought leaders at NSC22 with key collaborators and partners to identify the key stream priorities or Blueprint framework ready for following years NSC’s.

The Global and Keynote Thought Leader Sessions will focus on:

  • The Health Agenda – Connecting Exercise, Play, Recreation and Community Sport
  • Sport – Governance, Leadership and Industry Sustainability
  • Sport, Climate Change and Sustainability
  • Growing Participation Through Inclusion and Equality

Conference Innovative Stream Structure

There will be six themed streams allowing delegates to prioritise their interests. Each stream’s innovative structure will allow delegates to appreciate the big picture issues, policy and strategy alignment, good practice and have access to tools to take away.

Each stream will then have five workshops structured as follows:

  • Workshop 1: Compelling Rationale and Context – Industry leaders and collaborators spelling out the issue and opportunities, supported by global context and local discussion
  • Workshop 2: Strategy and Policy Direction – Exploring key strategies and policies that should be considered to move forward
  • Workshop 3: Management Good Practice – Case studies with key learnings
  • Workshop 4: Management Good Practice – Additional case studies with key learnings
  • Workshop 5: Tools and Solutions – Combining collaborators, partners and providers to showcase solutions, technology and support material to assist the planning, management and implementation

Streams – Providing strategy, management practice and tools to implement. Our six streams have been designed for all delegates to appreciate the compelling reason for change, strategy and policy implications, good management practices and access to tools to embed back in the workplace. The six streams will be focused on:

  1. Creating Active Cities
  2. Growing Participation Inclusively
  3. Community Sport and Leisure Facilities with Impact
  4. The Children and Young People Agenda
  5. Reimagining the Sports Industry
  6. Sport, Climate Change and Sustainability

NSC Multi-Sector Collaboration and Networking

Collectively identifying how the industry can best work together to make the greatest impact on industry outcomes will be the backbone of NSC22 with the support and priorities from the industry, with over 100 collaborators, industry thought leaders, key policy makers and partners in an aligned program of meetings and networking events, during the National Sports & Physical Activity Convention. This will include:

  • Industry Peak Body Hub in the Sport & Recreation Expo Hall
  • DCE Networking Lounge in the Expo Hall
  • Sport and Recreation Victoria Peak Body Sport and Recreation Hub
  • Networking Evening – Monday night after the NSC Oration and Tuesday after the conference
  • Eight hours of networking, over two and a half days
  • Networking Expert Circles aligned with the themed Streams at each of the Networking Events
  • Collaborator meetings in the Expo Meeting Rooms

NSC Academy

The industry’s largest collection of insights, and on-demand interviews with global and key leaders in the industry. Our aim is to collect, align and disseminate policy, guidelines, tools and best practice to the industry, as we build the largest library of content for delegates to have access to each 12 month period, free of charge as part of their NSC registration. The Academy also offers access to the past NSC session recordings from NSC21, NSC Forums 2020 and presentations from 2019. Additional solutions are sought from collaborators, partners and industry suppliers.

NSC Tours

NSC22 will offer a day of innovative tours to sports fields and facilities, community sport and leisure facilities, Victorian Technology Hub and children’s playgrounds and play spaces.

Community Sport & Recreation Expo

Encouraging the industry’s service providers to showcase their solutions, state-of-the-art products, and services, both at the NSC Expo and throughout the year.

We will have two Activity Zones for play and children’s playground equipment and for sport. These can be used with prior agreement with organisers for sponsors and providers to showcase their solutions on a first come first served basis.

Workshop Streams

Six streams will explore the critical narrative for change, options for policy and strategy that will frame such change, followed by a number of good practice workshops, ending with a ‘Toolbox’ session. These six streams focus will be:

Stream 1: Creating Active Cities

Creating environments collectively to encourage more people to move, play, exercise, recreate and participate in community sport so communities are healthier and happier.

Exploring global initiatives that address the United Nations (UN) SDG 11: Sustainable Cities and Communities, this stream will explore initiatives such as Sheffield’s Move More physical activity strategy, global city initiatives and State Governments 20 and 30 minute Cities. Examples, case studies and a toolbox to explore:

  • Planning, designing, and connecting community environments to encourage greater exercise
  • Creating energy in a city from hosting major events to local activation areas – collaborations and co-design
  • Access to parks, and spaces to play and recreate
  • Linking and connecting activity into participation programs, events and activities
  • Connect local government, community, and commercial providers to create localised outcomes

Stream 2: Growing Participation Inclusively

Growing participation is critical if we want to create a healthier community and a more active country. We need to have a whole of community focus and to do that we need to be inclusive.

What does inclusion really mean and how can we realistically achieve such an aspiration? This stream will focus on two key areas of understanding what inclusion is and how to use the principles to attract greater participation.

Every Australian should have the opportunity and be able to participate in physical activity, play recreation and community sport. As an industry there is recognition that for participants to want to participate, there needs to be a welcoming and inclusive environment, regardless of gender, sexual orientation, ability, cultural background, ethnicity, location or life stage.

The emphasis must be on respectfully connecting exercise, recreation, events and participation to create more opportunities for people to participate with no barriers, whether for fun, exercise, skill development or competition.

To explore these narratives we are building a stream that can explore:

  • Understanding inclusion and what it really means
  • Connecting exercise to mass participation events
  • Target programs for life stages and key cohorts
  • Specific support to specific groups – women, indigenous, disability and older people
  • Financial barriers to inclusion
  • Connecting participation and pathways

Stream 3: Community Sport and Leisure Facilities with Impact

“To create impact, we need to change the rules. We must rethink how we plan, build and operate these facilities. It starts by putting people first”. (Darryl Condon, Managing Principal at hcma architecture + Design)

As an industry we need to consider the needs of the community and not just a single need for a single sport, with reduced community land we need to be innovative to design and build community sport and leisure facilities that are extraordinary. They need to be a place where people get excited about going to, whether that be a sports field, playground or leisure centre. The built form needs to reflect the energy of the community, not the designer. It needs to balance functionality, sustainability, affordability and reflect community needs for today and tomorrow’s generations of users. We need to create community facilities with impact!

This workshop stream will explore both community sport and leisure facilities indoors, outdoors, and integrated options, including:

  • Design with impact for community facilities
  • Create ‘Third Place’ to attract and retain involvement
  • Collaboration, investment, and management
  • National audit of facilities
  • Innovation for sports surfaces for the future
  • European approach to repurposing facilities

Stream 4: The Children and Young People Agenda

The future of our existence is through our children, yet we do not have an integrated agenda to join the dots between play, physical literacy, education and participation. The time is right to connect these now.

We need to understand the importance of play and physical literacy to the development of our children as they will be our future stars, on the sports fields, in the arts, workforce and life. If we continue to ignore our obligations and miss our opportunities society of future generations will change for ever and we may never attain the success we want in 2032.

This year’s agenda for children and young people brings together the latest research and insights to help delegates understand the opportunities, why we need to act now, who can assist and what is available to support this movement. The workshops will explore:

  • Childcare and young people – what do they really want
  • Play and physical literacy – the starting point for life and sport
  • Connecting the dots between education and participation in sport
  • Making sport cool again
  • Developing mental health and resilience

Stream 5: Re-imagining the Sports Industry

If we continue to do the same, we will only get the same results. We need to re-imagine what we want to achieve and how we get there.

As we consider a 10-year plan for Brisbane 2032 what is the best way sport gets ready for such a journey? This is more than just the building of facilities for the ‘Games’, it’s about how sport is managed, governed and resourced. The industry is looking to bounce back in the next stage of managing the Covid pandemic fall out, feeling bruised and battered. How can the industry work better?

This stream will be exploring how a systems approach to align policy, strategy and support for the industry is being planned and rolled out, what has been successful and what is there still to do. If we are going to capitalise on the Brisbane Games we need a strong, resilient and sustainable industry.

The topic areas will include:

  • Funding and resourcing
  • Policy and strategy alignment
  • Collaborators and partnerships
  • Inspiring future leaders and workforce
  • Data insights
  • Good governance
  • Innovation and technology (across all streams)

Stream 6: Sport, Climate Change and Sustainability

The impact of climate change on sport and the opportunity that sport has to impact climate change and sustainability.

Global warming and sustainability have been highlighted significantly during the past two years and especially with COP26 in November 2021. Global warming is placing our planet and future generations at risk, and all levels of Government, many business and now sport are responding to these challenges. Sport was reflected as a strong stream at COP26 and the UN has launched the ‘Sport for Climate Action Framework’, which has 5 principles that underpin the Framework. The principles are focussed on taking greater environmental responsibility; reducing overall climate impact; education; promote sustainable and responsible consumption and advocate for climate change in the communities.

In addition to climate changes impact on sport, sport needs to consider the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s) as outcomes it wish to aspire to achieve. NSC22 will be exploring this as a critical component of the conference. The new structure of NSC22 allows us to showcase the important aspirational focus on sustainability, climate action and sport, together with policy and strategy considerations, good proactive, examples and exploring the tools to take back to your organisation. Workshops for this stream include:

  • Facility and environmental sustainability towards zero carbon impact
  • Facility design to reduce impact on carbon footprint
  • Latest European Guidelines for measuring carbon impact of sports facilities
  • Global Events and how they can embrace a ‘carbon positive impact strategy’

Organisations and individuals who are keen to be speakers and share their best practice please contact Martin Sheppard at

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