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Robyn Francis

updated 25jun07, audio interview added sept 2010




AUDIO: DAY1 of IPC8 Conference: Robyn Francis - Permaculture Designer: Permaculture as a Solution, 44'50



Robyn's report on IPC8:



AUDIO: DAY 3 of IPC8 Conference: Robyn Francis - Song, 7'35 (yes! she also writes and sings beautiful songs)



Audio of Interview with Stella at IPC8 in Brazil - on Robyn's path in permaculture activism



At IPC6 she presented this paper: From Aquarius Dreaming To Nineties Reality, Nimbin's Coming Of Age:







Is known internationally as a leading permaculture designer, educator and innovator, and as the founding director of Permaculture International Ltd. Since 1984 Robyn has taught and consulted in a wide range of cultures, climates and situations ranging from the tropics and deserts to cold temperate; from home gardens to farmlands; urban, rural and regional planning; with groups as diverse as local and state government, corporate clients, indigenous communities and grassroots individuals. She brings this wealth of experience into her training as an inspiring communicator dedicated to empowering people to become more effective agents of change.


Robyn walks her talk at Djanbung Gardens, an inspiring example of permaculture and sustainability in practice. The designer of Jarlanbah, NSW’s first rural community title and permaculture designed ecovillage, she has influenced state planning and local government through her work and received numerous awards for her vision, dedication and innovation.

As one of the key motivators and architects behind APT™ and the accreditation of permaculture training, Robyn continues to break new ground for permaculture & sustainability.



See Curriculum Vitae below



Robyn Francis will be available in 2004-5 for conducting RPL, Course Orientation Workshops for trainers and APT courses in other areas.


Robyn Francis - Curriculum Vitae (Condensed Version)


Name: Robyn Francis

Date of Birth 11/6/51

Address: PO Box 379, Nimbin NSW 2480, Australia

Contact Nos:

Wk Ph/Fax (02) 6689 1755 Mob: 1420 147 138

email: erda(at)nor(dot)com(dot)au



Overseas Work Experience:

USA, Germany, New Zealand, Indonesia, India



Diploma of Permaculture (APT) 2003

Workplace Training & Assessor Cert IV 2003

Train the Trainer (TAFE) 1991

Diploma of Permaculture Design (Permaculture Institute) 1985

Permaculture Design Course 1983



RiverCare 2000 NSW State Bronze Award for Composting Toilet and Wetland Greywater Treatment System

ABC Radio North Coast Rural Woman of the Year 1995

Permaculture Community Service Award 1985


Industry Experience - Summary

Since 1983 I have been working in permaculture education, design and consulting, organisational development, communications and media, community development and had input into planning legislation and policies on state and local level. My operations have been based in Northern NSW since 1989 and since 1994 on my property, Djanbung Gardens Permaculture Education Centre, located in Nimbin.

1977-1983 I owned and managed an organic herb farm, nursery & market garden on the NSW mid-north coast. During this period I was also involved in Multiple Occupancy and Rural Land Sharing Community associations and working with government representatives in drafting guidelines for state and local government Multiple Occupancy planning policies. In this period I was known as ‘Robyn Fertl’




1993-Present Accredited Permaculture Training

Published initial discussion paper The Need Accreditation for Permaculture Training 1993, and been involved in industry discussions & research into accreditation. Appointed as member of National Industry Review Committee (2002) developing Accredited Permaculture Training (APT™) Training Package, Certificates I-IV and Diploma, approved July 2003. Ongoing input into establishment of APT delivery, assessment and support services and development of training resources.


1989- present Training, Permaculture Education & The ERDA Institute

Managing permaculture training development and delivery for Permaculture Education, and principal tutor Permaculture Design Course, Ecovillage & Sustainable Community Design Course, Permaculture for Third World & Indigenous Peoples Course and numerous short course and workshop programmes. Developed and delivered training in Northern NSW, interstate, overseas and with Australian indigenous communities.


1993- present Manager/proprietor, Djanbung Gardens Permaculture Centre

Design, project management, ongoing management and development of permaculture training centre and 2 ha demonstration farm in sub-tropics. Permaculture Education and The ERDA Institute operate from Djanbung.

For project details see web site: www.earthwise.org.au


2000 - 2001 Permaculture Design Consultant, Lismore City Council

Community consultation and amenity landscape Concept Plan for Nimbin Peace Park including rainforest bushfood plantings. This project also involved superivising a team of youth in the design of a skate park.


1995 - 1997 Permaculture Design Consultant, Canyon Ranch Bali

Developed ‘best practice’ Ecologically Sustainable Development (ESD) Design & Project management guidelines for international team of consultants for 48ha residential estate and 5-star health resort in Bali. Also landscape design concepts for organic agricultural estate integrating traditional Balinese farming and permaculture, concept plan and architect’s brief for 2ha education and cultural centre. Key focus on environmental, cultural and social factors.


1994-1995 Permaculture Design Consultant, Lismore City Council

Community consultation, participatory design facilitation, concept plan and construction drawings for Nimbin main street beautification plan, traffic calming and cycleways


1994 Permaculture Landscape Consultant, NSW Dept of Public Works

Design and supervision of implementation for a bird habitat & bushfoods tree planting & irrigation for Nimbin Water Supply Augmentation Dam site


1993 Consultant, Sustainable Futures Planning & Design

Concept development for an innovative new planning approach & guidelines for rural residential development for NSW Department of Planning – this report received RAPI NSW State and National ‘Excellence in Planning’ Awards in 1995-96


1991-1992 Design Consultant, Jarlanbah Permaculture Hamlet

Concept and master plan for 20 ha (43 lot) rural residential development as permaculture ecovillage under Community Title – input into by-laws and Development Application to Lismore City Council. This project was described by NSW Department of Rural & Urban Planning in 1995 as the foremost example of ESD (Ecologically Sustainable Development) ‘best practice’ for rural residential development


1993 Consultant for NSW Arts Council: Creative Village Project – Casino

Working in an interdisciplinary team with architect and community artist facilitating a major community consultation process and developing strategies for the town and community of Casino, Northern NSW

Principal Consultant for Permaculture Services Ltd, Sydney


1987-88 Cummeragunga Aboriginal Village, Community & Land Development

Contracted to the NSW Department of Housing, Aboriginal Housing Unit, this project involved extensive community consultation and education, preparation of a major report and analysis of environmental, social, cultural and economic factors effecting Cummeragunga and a second report detailing recommendations for the future of the village, community and 440 Ha farmlands




1. Education, Training & Facilitation - Summary

From 1984 to present I have been developing curricula and delivering workshops and courses in permaculture design and practices.


• Permaculture Design Course – 80-90 hour intensive training incorporating the 72 hour


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