Social Needs Analysis

The Client
City of Joondalup
Project Team
Cath Blake-Powell
Principal - Engagement
Tilly Chaney
Consultant - Urban Design & Place
Hayley Sellman
Consultant - Engagement
The Project

The City of Joondalup is one of the most populated local governments in Western Australia, and is forecast to grow from 162,737 people in 2021 to 181,841 in 2041. To support this growth and prepare for the future, the City needed to plan and advocate for an appropriately sequenced delivery of social infrastructure and facilities to ensure people have access to necessary services. The City identified that a lack of available high-quality data was hindering its social needs planning. This limitation affected the City’s capability to investigate social infrastructure projects and effectively advocate for services that meet the needs of the community.  

Pracsys and element were engaged to conduct a Social Needs Analysis, a technical and evidence-based study to understand the current and future gaps in service and infrastructure provision and plan a sequenced delivery of services accordingly. The analysis will inform the Strategic Community Plan reviews and create baseline data for the Community Infrastructure Plan. The final report assessed the four types of need from Bradshaw’s Taxonomy of Need: normative, comparative, expressed and felt need. This was undertaken for fourteen service streams across seven service categories.

Our Role

element prepared and implemented a Community and Stakeholder Engagement Plan to understand the perspectives of key stakeholders, service providers and community members to determine felt and expressed needs within the City. To do so, we used a random sample survey, pop-up displays, intercept surveys, internal staff conversations and interviews with external stakeholders to seek feedback from a representative cross-section of people. The engagement outcomes identified key themes within each of the seven service categories and issues in provision that prevent effective and efficient delivery of necessary community services.


The final report identified the social needs of the City of Joondalup’s existing and future population. Compiling the findings from the normative, comparative, expressed and felt needs, the results determined the ‘real’ need for each service stream. The service categories were prioritised using a numerical scale to identify the most critical needs to be addressed by the City. The purpose of this was so the City can use the prioritisation to identify the social service facilities that are the most underprovided or require changes to the services provided at these facilities.

What We Delivered
  • Stakeholder and Community Engagement Plan
  • Online community survey
  • Pop-up engagement displays
  • Internal staff conversations
  • External stakeholder interviews
  • Engagement outcomes report

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