The Knysna Municipality has many different stakeholders and different problems like pollution and a lack of jobs in the area. These problems are not easy to solve and needs the Knysna community to work together and come up with new ideas and ways to solve the problems. The Knysna ISDF stakeholder engagement process is supposed to help get all the ideas and to help the community to work together.
No stakeholder engagement process is perfect but monitoring and evaluation can help show the elements that need attention. This first report shows that not all stakeholders are being treated fairly. The municipality seems to be getting more attention than any other stakeholder.
Stakeholders are also asking for more time to read information and make choices and decisions. The biggest problem in the process at the moment is the disagreement between the Knysna Municipality and the civil environmental groups. This conflict is affecting more than one of the elements in this report because it is not being resolved.
Ways in which the process can be improved include involving more stakeholders in Workshop Cafes for example the Sedgefield community and the civil environmental groups.
More information is needed for example the different plans that need to be included in the final framework and also the status quo information to be given in summaries and in other languages, not only in English.
Stakeholders also need more time to read the information and to think about the way things are now and to come up with good ideas to help solve the problems.
Also by telling more people when the workshops are happening will let more stakeholders get involved.
The biggest way of improving the process is to help resolve the conflict between the Knysna Municipality and the civil environmental groups [Mike – the public]. This will help build trust and help the Knysna community to work together.
The process so far gives stakeholders different ways to get involved and is including a lot of different stakeholders from different backgrounds. The process is also able to change if some parts of it are not working as they should. The website is liked by the community and information is being given to the stakeholders. Stakeholders are also talking to each other and learning from each other. The small workshops are helping this to happen. The community are agreeing about some things and are busy building trust and developing a shared vision and goals.
Most stakeholders are excited to be involved in the process and the Status Quo Reports are a good starting point for the rest of the process.
Mike (Knysna Keep): I’ll follow-up with a part 6 once i’ve gotten opinions from some of the role-players in the ISDF so far.