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Thursday, April 9 • 9:15am - 10:40am
TH9.15.15 Global City Sydney

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Sydney has emerged as a major global or world city in the 21st Century. This panel examines the global city thesis, which dominates urban scholarship and practice and whether it adequately captures the Sydney experience. Although the global city thesis is a useful analytical construct for policy makers and scholars, it is incomplete in charting Sydney’s rise and current problems. The global city thesis ignores the political institutions and processes that actually shape and direct the global city. The City of Sydney is a small share of the city-region, accounting for only about 4 percent of the metropolis. Sydney lacks a metropolitan or regional government and has few regional collaborative processes or platforms. Rather, the global city strategy of Sydney is shaped and directed by the state of New South Wales. This is contrary to the political decentralization and devolution trends heralded by international actors such as OECD. Sydney also illustrates the dilemma of global cities in that those members at the top of the knowledge economy are highly rewarded and those in the middle and lower strata face difficulty maintaining or improving their situation. Local government lacks the capacity to act independently and the state and federal governments are unwilling to address serious urban problems associated with globalization, such as public transit or housing. Given their focus on austerity policies and embrace of neoliberalism, the global city vision advanced by leaders is threatened. There is little concrete policy offered by any level of government to address the crisis.

Sydney, a Global City for Whom?: Bringing Back Discussions of Equity
Roberta Ryan, University of Technology, Sydney

Transportation and Planning in the Sydney City-Region
Peter Walsh, University of Technology, Sydney

Economic Competitiveness: Sydney’s Global City Strategy
Bligh Grant, University of Technology, Sydney

Governing Global City Sydney
Alex Lawrie, University of Technology, Sydney; Neil Selmon, University of Technology, Sydney; Ronald Vogel, Ryerson University

avatar for Alex Lawrie

Alex Lawrie

Researcher, University of Technology, Sydney
Alex Lawrie is a Researcher who formerly worked in urban planning and public policy for a range of private and government clients across Queensland and New South Wales. Alex is a talented young urban planner with particular expertise in statutory, strategic and social planning, public... Read More →
avatar for Roberta Ryan

Roberta Ryan

Institute Director, University of Technology Sydney
Professor Roberta Ryan is a leading social researcher and policy, program evaluation and stakeholder engagement practitioner with over 30 years’ experience in both the public and private sectors. With a strong interest in the relationship between people and places she has worked... Read More →
avatar for Bligh Grant, University of Technology Sydney

Bligh Grant, University of Technology Sydney

Associate Professor, University of Technology Sydney
I am a political scientist specialising in local government studies, particularly in Australia but also in international comparative perspective. Australia-U.S.-Canada comparative material has waned in recent years and us coming to UAA is to establish links in North America. My co-authored... Read More →
avatar for Peter Walsh

Peter Walsh

University of Technology, Sydney
Peter Walsh is a research associate at the Centre for Local Government at University of Technology Sydney, and is undertaking doctoral research at Swinburne University of Technology Melbourne. Peter is a Fellow of the Planning Institute of Australia and has operated a consulting planning... Read More →

avatar for Ronald Vogel, Ryerson University

Ronald Vogel, Ryerson University

Department of Politics and Public Administration, Ryerson University
My research interests focus on metropolitan governance, global cities, and comparative urban politics.

Thursday April 9, 2015 9:15am - 10:40am EDT
Michelangelo (2nd floor)