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Welcome to the Accreditation for Economic Developers 

If you are new to economic development, interested in achieving your first ED qualification, or intent on honing your skills, then AcED is for you.  


You can choose to either graze the many training courses without pursuing the AcED or achieve the AcED through specific courses.   

The AcED is the first step on your path to a bright future in economic development  

AcED is the gold standard for excellence in the economic development profession within NZ.  EDNZ is working with the International Economic Development Council to enable cross accreditation with its 'Certified Economic Developers' (CEcD) world wide programme.  


Interested in earning the AcED designation?


The AcED is the foundation of your learning.    Learners are required to take a minimum of seven one day courses to achieve the AcED.  Five of those are core competency courses and two are electives.  You can take all seven in one year or stagger them over two years, the choice is yours.



Core competency courses (required)


  • Introduction to Development

  • Regional Economic Development

  • Maori Economic Development

  • Business attraction, growth and retention 

  • Professional Practice

Elective Courses 


AcED learners are required to take a minimum of two elective courses to achieve the ACeD.  

Below is a taste of the sort of elective courses you can choose from:


  • Evidence based ED - beyond GDP

  • Destination management 

  • Macro issues in contemporary economic development

  • Engaging with Māori

  • ED Project (by negotiation)

  • Economic Development for elected representatives

  • From monitoring to evaluation
    Economic Gardening
    Trade and Investment

  • Cluster Development

    NB.there are new elective courses added throughout the year so be sure to keep an eye open for the latest. 


Once courses are completed

When you have completed all seven one day courses you will be invited to submit a short paper and attend an online interview with three learning facilitators.  Details will be provided by EDNZ upon completion of the five core and two elective courses.  You can also keep track of those courses you have attended via your EDNZ membership account.

Once you have earned the AcED designation, you can proudly display your achievement with a pin and your certificate of completion. 

A graduation ceremony for all those who have completed the course will be held as part of the annual conference.

Maintaining your AcED


The AcED aims to provide continuing professional development.  Maintaining your AcED is an important way to boost visibility of your organisation and maintain your marketability within the profession.

AcED graduates are required to attend at least two EDNZ based professional development event each year 
The annual economic development conference counts as two events should you choose this as your way to maintain your accreditation

It is important to meet the re-accreditation criteria in order to keep your accreditation current.

Costs of Courses

The one day courses are heavily subsidised to maintain affordability.  Membership of EDNZ, either as an individual or organisation, results in a further reduction in cost to the learner.   

In-house and online delivery 

EDNZ will come to you!  If your organisation has 15 or more team members or learners from partner organisations who wish to engage in a course EDNZ will bring the course to you.  Alternatively, an even more cost-effective option is to take up the online delivery option.  Please contact Susan Houston on 027 2044715 if you wish to discuss either option. 

Let’s Work Together

Get in touch so we can start working together.

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