Dr David Bray

BA (Hons) PhD Melbourne
Senior Lecturer
Postgraduate Research Coordinator

A26 - R.C. Mills Building
The University of Sydney

Telephone +61 2 9114 0970

Website Contact Details

Research interests

David Bray’s research is focused on exploring the inter-relationships between the built environment, governance and social change in contemporary China. Utilising post-structuralist theorisations on power, ‘governmentality’ and spatiality he aims to understand both how the built environment is imagined and planned at a governmental and technocratic level, as well as how its reconstruction impacts on communities and subjectivities at the local level. In particular David is interested in the multifarious ways in which the built environment becomes both a strategic resource for governmental interventions and a site of local resistance to those interventions and to the discourses they embody. China’s rapid urban transformation in recent years is of global significance in its own right, but in a comparative context, it also raises many intriguing challenges to established understandings of modernisation, urbanisation and social change: in this broader context, David’s research seeks to address larger theoretical debates associated with fields such as urban sociology, human geography, social policy, city planning and globalisation.

David Bray is fluent in Chinese (Mandarin) and undertakes regular research trips to China where he is currently engaged in research collaborations with scholars at leading universities including Peking, Tsinghua and Nanjing.

Teaching and supervision

Current Teaching:

SCLG3605 Urban Transformations: space and society

SCLG3601 - Contemporary Sociological Theory

Current projects

  1. ‘Master Plans and Model Communities: redesigning urban life in contemporary China' (sole-authored book project)
  2. ‘Building a New Countryside’: urban planning goes rural in China’ (ongoing fieldwork based project)
  3. New Mentalities of Government in China (conference Dec. 2012, edited book project)
  4. ‘The Formation and the Evolution of the Danwei System in Contemporary China’; International Collaborator with team led by Prof. Chai Yanwei, Peking University.

Awards and honours

Visiting Professor, School of Architecture and Urban Planning, Tsinghua University, China: Sep-Oct 2008

Visiting Scholar, Centre for Chinese Studies, University of California at Berkeley, USA: Nov-Jan 2008/09

Selected grants

2010

  • Reconstructing community in Shanghai: space, power and identity in the new metropolis; Bray D; DVC Research/Bridging Support Grant.

2008

  • Governing the Chinese City: space and power in contemporary urban communities; Bray D; University of Sydney/Bridging Support.

2007

  • Community space and governance in contemporary urban China; Bray D; University of Sydney/Newly Appointed Staff.

Selected publications

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Books

  • Bray, D. (2005). Social Space and Governance in Urban China: The Danwei System from Origins to Reform. Stanford: Stanford University Press.

Book Chapters

  • Bray, D. (2013). Master planning the nation: Elites and the transformation of China's build environment. In Xiaowei Zang, Chien-wen Kou (Eds.), Elites and Governance in China, (pp. 73-93). Oxon: Routledge imprint of Taylor & Francis.
  • Bray, D. (2012). The Danwei: Socialist Factory Town in Miniature? In Stefan Al, Paul Chu Hoi Shan, Alexander Giarlis, Claudia Juhre, Casey Wang (Eds.), Factory Towns of South China: An Illustrated Guidebook, (pp. 5-8). Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press.
  • Bray, D. (2011). Building "Community": New Strategies of Governance in Urban China. In Tak-Wing Ngo (Eds.), Contemporary China Studies 2 – Economy and Society. London: Sage Publications.
  • Bray, D. (2011). Governing Urban China: Labour, Welfare, and the Danwei. In Tak-Wing Ngo (Eds.), Contemporary China Studies 1 – Politics. Sage Publications.
  • Bray, D. (2009). Building Community: New Strategies of Governance in Urban China. In Elaine Jeffrey (Eds.), China's Governmentalities: governing change, changing government, (pp. 88-1o6). Oxon, U.K.: Routledge imprint of Taylor & Francis.
  • Bray, D. (2009). Cong danwei dao xiaoqu: zhilide kongjianhua (From Danwei to Xiaoqu: the Spatialization of Government). In Jianfei Zhu (Eds.), Zhongguo jianzhu liushinian1949-2009: lunwenji (Sixty Years of Chinese Architecture 1949-2009: History, Theory and Criticism), (pp. 140-155). Beijing: China Architecture and Building Press.
  • Bray, D. (2009). Governing Urban China: Labour Welfare and the Danwei. In L. Tomba, A. Kipnis, J. Unger (Eds.), Contemporary Chinese Society and Politics, (pp. 105-136). London & New York: Routledge imprint of Taylor & Francis.
  • Bray, D. (2006). Urban design and community gervernance in China: a study of space and power. In Paola Pellegrini & Paola Vigano (Eds.), Q3 Comment vivre ensemble: Prototypes of idiorrhythmical conglomerates and shared spaces, (pp. 81-99). Rome, Italy: Officina edizioni.

Journals

  • Bray, D. (2013). Urban Planning Goes Rural: Conceptualising the "New Village". China Perspectives, 2013 (3), 53-62.
  • Bray, D. (2012). Zhufangde xiandaixing: shehui zhuyi zhongguode chengshi guihua he zhuzhai sheji. Chengshi Zhongguo (Urban China).
  • Bray, D. (2008). Designing to Govern: Space and Power in Two Wuhan Communities. Built Environment, 34(4), 392-407.
  • Bray, D. (2007). The Making of the State Enterprise System in Modern China: The Dynamics of Institutional Change, by Morris L. Bian (review). The China Journal, 58(July 2007), 203-206.
  • Bray, D. (2006). Building 'Community': new strategies of governance in urban China. Economy and Society, 35(4), 530-549.
  • Bray, D. (2005). Review: China’s Democratic Future: How it Will Happen and Where it Will Lead. Democratization, 12(2), 275-277.
  • Bray, D. (2005). Review: Globalization and State Transformation in China. Political Studies Review, 3(1), 115.
  • Bray, D. (2004). Review: China’s Long March Toward Rule of Law. Political Studies Review, 2(2), 253.

Conferences

  • Bray, D. (2006). Garden Estates and Social Harmony: A study into the relationship between residential planning and urban governance in contemporary China. The 1st Internationa Conference of China City Planning and Development & The 3rd China Planning Network Annual Conference, Beijing, Boston & London: China Planning Network (CPN).

2013

  • Bray, D. (2013). Master planning the nation: Elites and the transformation of China's build environment. In Xiaowei Zang, Chien-wen Kou (Eds.), Elites and Governance in China, (pp. 73-93). Oxon: Routledge imprint of Taylor & Francis.
  • Bray, D. (2013). Urban Planning Goes Rural: Conceptualising the "New Village". China Perspectives, 2013 (3), 53-62.

2012

  • Bray, D. (2012). The Danwei: Socialist Factory Town in Miniature? In Stefan Al, Paul Chu Hoi Shan, Alexander Giarlis, Claudia Juhre, Casey Wang (Eds.), Factory Towns of South China: An Illustrated Guidebook, (pp. 5-8). Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press.
  • Bray, D. (2012). Zhufangde xiandaixing: shehui zhuyi zhongguode chengshi guihua he zhuzhai sheji. Chengshi Zhongguo (Urban China).

2011

  • Bray, D. (2011). Building "Community": New Strategies of Governance in Urban China. In Tak-Wing Ngo (Eds.), Contemporary China Studies 2 – Economy and Society. London: Sage Publications.
  • Bray, D. (2011). Governing Urban China: Labour, Welfare, and the Danwei. In Tak-Wing Ngo (Eds.), Contemporary China Studies 1 – Politics. Sage Publications.

2009

  • Bray, D. (2009). Building Community: New Strategies of Governance in Urban China. In Elaine Jeffrey (Eds.), China's Governmentalities: governing change, changing government, (pp. 88-1o6). Oxon, U.K.: Routledge imprint of Taylor & Francis.
  • Bray, D. (2009). Cong danwei dao xiaoqu: zhilide kongjianhua (From Danwei to Xiaoqu: the Spatialization of Government). In Jianfei Zhu (Eds.), Zhongguo jianzhu liushinian1949-2009: lunwenji (Sixty Years of Chinese Architecture 1949-2009: History, Theory and Criticism), (pp. 140-155). Beijing: China Architecture and Building Press.
  • Bray, D. (2009). Governing Urban China: Labour Welfare and the Danwei. In L. Tomba, A. Kipnis, J. Unger (Eds.), Contemporary Chinese Society and Politics, (pp. 105-136). London & New York: Routledge imprint of Taylor & Francis.

2008

  • Bray, D. (2008). Designing to Govern: Space and Power in Two Wuhan Communities. Built Environment, 34(4), 392-407.

2007

  • Bray, D. (2007). The Making of the State Enterprise System in Modern China: The Dynamics of Institutional Change, by Morris L. Bian (review). The China Journal, 58(July 2007), 203-206.

2006

  • Bray, D. (2006). Building 'Community': new strategies of governance in urban China. Economy and Society, 35(4), 530-549.
  • Bray, D. (2006). Garden Estates and Social Harmony: A study into the relationship between residential planning and urban governance in contemporary China. The 1st Internationa Conference of China City Planning and Development & The 3rd China Planning Network Annual Conference, Beijing, Boston & London: China Planning Network (CPN).
  • Bray, D. (2006). Urban design and community gervernance in China: a study of space and power. In Paola Pellegrini & Paola Vigano (Eds.), Q3 Comment vivre ensemble: Prototypes of idiorrhythmical conglomerates and shared spaces, (pp. 81-99). Rome, Italy: Officina edizioni.

2005

  • Bray, D. (2005). Review: China’s Democratic Future: How it Will Happen and Where it Will Lead. Democratization, 12(2), 275-277.
  • Bray, D. (2005). Review: Globalization and State Transformation in China. Political Studies Review, 3(1), 115.
  • Bray, D. (2005). Social Space and Governance in Urban China: The Danwei System from Origins to Reform. Stanford: Stanford University Press.

2004

  • Bray, D. (2004). Review: China’s Long March Toward Rule of Law. Political Studies Review, 2(2), 253.

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