Funded Research Projects for 2017

"To support academic, professional and public debate through public lectures and the publication of research that can beneficially transform current practice and encourage inspirational thinking about how to better manage urban and regional development."


Organising the 21st Century City: An International Comparison of Urban Alliances as Citizen Engagement

Assoc Prof Kurt Iveson, Prof John Keane, Dr Madeleine Pill, Dr Adrienne Keane, Prof Helga Leitner, Assoc Prof Mark Davidson, Prof Jane Wills, Prof Romand Coles, Prof Leo Penta
In a growing number of cities, citizens are channeling frustration with existing citizen engagement processes into the creation of urban alliances that bring together diverse civil society actors to articulate and pursue common interests. The intention of such alliances is to enable citizens to play a proactive role in the shaping of their cities, as an alternative to the reactive role they are often ascribed in existing governance and planning frameworks. This will be the first international comparative study of these alliances. Through desk-based mapping and qualitative case studies, the project will examine their global extent, their different forms and activities, their relationship to existing forms of citizen participation in existing structures of urban governance and planning, and their effectiveness as infrastructures for citizen engagement and empowerment. The research will contribute to scholarly understanding of citizen participation in urban governance and planning. It will also make significant practical contributions to the efforts of citizens seeking to build new infrastructures for participating in urban governance, and it will also aid the efforts of those working in planning agencies who are seeking more genuine citizen participation.

Housing for Health: Fixing Infrastructure and Housing Policy in Indigenous Australia and Beyond

Assoc Prof Tess Lea, Prof Allan McConnell, Prof Michael Tawa, Prof Paul Torzillo, Dr Christian Tietz, Mr Adrian Welke
The supply and maintenance of affordable housing and infrastructure remains one of the most vexed issues confronting Indigenous public policy. Houses remain in need of major repair or replacement; and often lack sufficient water supplies, washing facilities, or sewage infrastructure (the 'health hardware') to be functional. As a partial correction, the Housing for Health (HfH) program restores some function by testing and fixing vital health hardware. The greater challenge is ensuring better design, installation and maintenance in the first instance. This Incubator critically examines the policy obstacles to such systemic change while providing practical models for improved housing.