June 2015
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A 10-point action plan to tackle housing unaffordability

Keying into the red-hot debate of the past fortnight, Hal Pawson, Bill Randolph and Vivienne Milligan have joined fellow Sydney-based academics to frame an evidence-based housing action plan for joint implementation by State and Commonwealth Governments. Our ‘open letter’ style article appears as today’s lead story in The Conversation (24 June).

Blogging for a better urban future

We are pleased to announce the launch of the new City Futures blog. Here we will be discussing all manner of things to do with housing and cities. Posts to date have been:
Senate report on affordable housing: landmark or lost opportunity? – Chris Martin 28 May
Abbott, Hockey and housing – Chris Martin 15 June
A Fresh Lens on Housing Unaffordability: The Problem and its Causes – Bill Randolph 16 June
A Fresh Lens on Housing Unaffordability: Fixing the Problem – Bill Randolph 18 June
If you subscribe to the blog you’ll be notified of new posts – just click the ‘stay updated’ button at the bottom of each entry.

Welcome to our two new recruits

City Futures is delighted to welcome two new team members to the BE research team.
Moving from the University of Melbourne, Dr Chris Pettit joins as City Futures Associate Director and Australian Graduate School of Urbanism (AGSU) Professor of Urban Science. Formerly Melbourne’s Coordinator of the Australian Urban Research Infrastructure Network (AURIN), Chris also chairs an international working group on Geographical Visualization and Virtual Reality. He has published more than 100 papers spanning geographical visualization, e-research, spatial planning and decision support systems. His current research interests lie in the design of user-centric participatory planning and visualisation tools applicable to spatial planning.
Dr Chris Martin takes up a position as a Research Fellow in the City Housing Program. With an academic background bridging economics and law, Chris comes to UNSW from Tenants Union of NSW where he was responsible for the TU’s policy and law reform work. An expert on tenancy law reform, housing affordability and social housing policy, Chris is author of the NSW Tenants’ Rights Manual. He completed his Sydney University doctorate on the governance of crime and disorder in NSW public housing in 2010.

Prestigious international invitations

As an invited speaker, Bill Randolph recently took part in an international seminar on urban governance in world cities, hosted by University College London. In a panel  discussion relating experience in London, Paris and Sydney, Bill’s contribution drew attention to the governance implications of large scale apartment living.
Meanwhile, among a group of 30 international experts, CFRC Associate 
Director Susan Thompson has been invited by Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design to attend a workshop on the future of healthy cities. Participants will share their experiences and disciplinary knowledge from public health, environmental sustainability and urban planning.  The event, taking place in Boston in late June, will focus on two key questions: Where is the area of healthy places headed i
n the next decade or two?  Where might Harvard be able to make a difference—through existing resources and new collaborations?  We look forward to reporting on workshop outcomes – particularly opportunities for CFRC collaborations in new research on health and place.
Professor Thompson also recently participated in an independent assessment panel to review proposals for one of the New Zealand Government’s Science ChallengesBuilding Better Homes, Towns and Cities.  The National Science Challenges are large and complex issues which call for interdisciplinary research, varying methodological approaches and cross-institutional collaboration. Susan was invited to participate as an expert panelist for her mastery of urban planning and health.  The winning scheme is yet to be announced.

Urban Renewal MPhil scholarship initiative at UNSW

City Futures has struck a deal with UrbanGrowth NSW to offer top-up research scholarships for the MPhil degree in Urban Renewal. A stipend of $20,000 over two years will be available for research which will advance understanding of urban renewal processes, practices and outcomes with relevance to contemporary challenges in Sydney. Details on eligibility and how to apply can be found here.

Susan Thompson new book published

Congratulations to CFRC’s Susan Thompson, co-editor of a just-published international  compendium on planning for health and well-being. The Routledge Handbook of Planning for Health and Well-Being: Shaping a sustainable and healthy future is also co-edited by University of the West of England colleagues Professor Hugh Barton, Dr Marcus Grant and Sarah Burgess. Contributing authors include Built Environment Faculty colleagues Professor Robert Freestone, Associate Professor Linda Corkery and PhD candidate, Louise McKenzie. The contents range from theoretical, historical and philosophical perspectives to the latest research on how planners can help to create environments that support healthy living. Case studies from developing and developed countries, including Australia, conclude the book.  Reviews by luminaries contain an exciting endorsement from none other than Kevin McCloud of ‘Grand Designs’ fame.

City Futures in the News

Quarter 2 2015 has again seen Bill Randolph staging a ubiquitous presence in the pages of the Sydney Morning Herald. As well as featuring in the SMH 13 June front page story on housing unaffordability in Sydney, he was also quoted in numerous other stories in the past three months: on the rising price of roomshares, on GenY housing aspirations, on the growing gap between Sydney’s rich and poor suburbs, and on soaring house auction prices across the city.
Meanwhile, CFRC projections on rising levels of apartment living were also cited in an SMH piece on strata law reform. And the team’s leading strata expert, Hazel Easthope, also features in a podcast on high density living on The Conversation site.
Last but not least, rapidly validating the reach of the new CFRC blog, Chris Martin’s first post was extensively cited  by Michael Pascoe in the SMH on 17 June.

Staffing updates

CFRC City Analytics Program will soon advertise two new positions to join the team. A Research Fellow with focus on urban modelling and simulation and a Research Associate with main focus on data analytics and visualisation. If you would like to receive more details, please contact Chris Pettit

Books, Refereed Journal Articles, AHURI Reports and other Q2 2015

Bigby, C. & Wiesel, I. (2015) Mediating Community Participation: Practice of Support Workers in Initiating, Facilitating or Disrupting Encounters between People with and without Intellectual Disability Journal of Applied Research in Intellectual Disabilities.
Freestone, R. & Wiesel, I. (2015) Privatisation, property and planning: the remaking of Canberra Airport Policy Studies, 1-20.
Maier, G. & Herath, S. (2015) Immobilienbewertung mit hedonischen Preismodellen (Real estate appraisal with hedonic pricing models); Springer Gabler
Barton, H., Thompson, S., Burgess, S. & Grant, M. (2015) The Routledge Handbook of Planning for Health and Wellbeing; London: Routledge
Tice, A. (2015) Age-cohort and Housing Market demand Area interactions; City Futures Research Centre: University of New South Wales
van den Nouwelant, R. & Legacy, C. (2015) Negotiating strategic planning’s transitional spaces: the case of ‘guerrilla governance’ in infrastructure planning Environment and Planning A: international journal of urban and regional research, 47(1), 209-226 
Wiesel, I. (2015) Housing for People with Intellectual Disabilities and the National Disability Insurance Scheme Reforms Research and Practice in Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, 1-11
Wiesel, I. & Bigby, C. (2015) Movement on Shifting Sands: Deinstitutionalisation and People with Intellectual Disability in Australia, 1974–2014 Urban Policy and Research, 1-17
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