Publication Details

Dowling, R., McGuirk, P. & Gillon, C. (2019). Strategic or Piecemeal? Smart City Initiatives in Sydney and Melbourne. Urban Policy and Research, 37 (4), 429-441.


This paper focuses on the smart urbanism that is being crafted by local authorities in metropolitan Sydney and Melbourne, Australia. Offering an extensive analysis of the Australian context, we chart firstly how engagement with smart is primarily focused on improving quotidian local government functions. Second, our analysis of the diverse mechanisms and policies through which cities are being made smart shows that piecemeal initiatives rather than smart city strategies predominate in the two cities. There is a variegated geography of smart urbanism in these two cities, we conclude, that is incrementally rather than radically transforming cities and their governance.

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