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As power prices soar, we need a concerted effort to tackle energy poverty

Energy pricing is complicated and confusing, as a forthcoming report from the Australian consumer watchdog makes clear.

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Rail access improves liveability, but all regional centres are not equal

Our research on the liveability of regional cities in Victoria has identified an important element: liveability in these areas requires fast, reliable and frequent rail connections to capital cities.

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Food sharing with a 21st-century twist – and Melbourne’s a world leader

Food sharing is experiencing a renaissance in cities around the world. By food sharing, we mean the collaborative growing, cooking, eating and distributing of food as well as sharing food-related skills, spaces and tools.

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Decolonising Settler Cities

Decolonising Settler Cities was a series of events held throughout 2017 bringing together Indigenous and non-Indigenous activists, scholars, communities and practitioners to share their questions and critiques, experience and knowledge of cities as settler-colonial modes of power, and the possibilities and obstacles they present for Indigenous land justice.

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Indigenous communities are reworking urban planning, but planners need to accept their history

Nearly 80% of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in Australia live in urban areas but cities often exclude and marginalise them.

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Melbourne Airport is going to be as busy as Heathrow, so why the argument about one train line?

In Melbourne, the politics of this debate has so far prevented a railway from being built, because it is not possible for one line to meet all of the landside access needs of the airport.

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How tree bonds can help preserve the urban forest

Great cities need trees to be great places, but urban changes put pressure on the existing trees as cities develop. As a result, our rapidly growing cities are losing trees at a worrying rate. So how can we grow our cities and save our city trees?

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Homeless numbers will keep rising until governments change course on housing

The number of people experiencing homelessness and the rate of homelessness have both increased. Our research points to problems in the public housing system as one of the more important causes of these increases.

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For Australians to have the choice of growing old at home, here is what needs to change

The population of people aged 65 and over in Australia is projected to grow from 3.7 million to 8.7 million by 2056. Cities, towns and housing need to be designed to help people stay at home as they age.

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IPCC cities conference tackles gaps between science and climate action on the ground

Some 600 climate scientists, urban researchers, policymakers and practitioners attended the International Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) first ever conference on cities last week.

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New cities? It’s an idea worth thinking about for Australia

Is there a case for revisiting the idea of new cities for Australia in the light of recent population projections and resurgent debate about the implications of a big Australia?

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All the signs point to our big cities’ need for democratic, metro-scale governance

Infrastructure Australia has called for metropolitan-scale governance of Australia’s largest cities. The new report by the Commonwealth’s statutory infrastructure agency, which sought to scope out the prospects for Sydney and Melbourne over the next 25 years, identifies integrated governance and leadership as keys to success.

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The elephant in the planning scheme: how cities still work around the dominance of parking space

Car parking is expected but often unnoticed, taking up surprisingly large proportions of city space. A parking bay occupies at least 13 square metres – some codes specify up to 30 square metres including access ways.

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Transurban’s West Gate tollway is a road into uncharted territory

Like the controversial East West Link, this project has no electoral mandate, and was rushed through the formal planning processes. It’s also part of a trend seen in other Australian states for projects to be announced before alternative planning options are considered.

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Enhancing Science Impact: Bridging Research, Policy and Practice for Sustainability

Sustainability challenges blur the boundaries between academic disciplines, between research, policy and practice, and between states, markets and society. There is also significant policy interest in ensuring that the research undertaken by universities and other scientific organisations has impact.

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High energy costs make vulnerable households reluctant to use air conditioning: study

The trifecta of rising electricity prices, soaring temperatures and concerns over possible blackouts risks increasing heat-related deaths and illness this summer, as households struggle to afford to run cooling appliances.

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Sharing economy sounds caring, but let’s put it to the ethical city test

More than ever, cities face multiple crises posing paradoxical opportunities. Key challenges for cities in the urban century are climate change, inequality and governance.

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How do we turn a drain into valued green space? First, ask the resident

The green infrastructure of our cities includes both publicly owned, designed and delineated areas and less formal, unplanned areas of vegetation — informal green spaces.

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Water or coal? The increasingly clear choice

Questions about the future of coal are often presented as a rational choice between energy sources with different economic costs, greenhouse gas emissions, and levels of reliability.

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Food Sharing in Cities

As cities grow in size and consumption, sharing has been suggested as a possible means to conserve resources, prevent waste and provide new social and economic relations.

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Some suburbs are being short-changed on services and liveability – which ones and what’s the solution?

Australia’s population has grown by 3.8 million over the last decade. Of the capital cities, Melbourne has grown the fastest – close to 1 million newcomers in the ten years to June 2016.

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City-by-city analysis shows our capitals aren’t liveable for many resident

We know what makes for healthy and liveable communities, which in turn produces massive payoffs. But we often lack comprehensive policies and frameworks to deliver on the promise.

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Let’s get this straight, habitat loss is the number-one threat to Australia’s species

Earlier this month, Australia’s outgoing Threatened Species Commissioner Gregory Andrews told ABC radio that land clearing is not the biggest threat to Australia’s wildlife. His claim caused a stir among Australia’s biodiversity scientists and conservation professionals, who have plenty of evidence to the contrary.

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How Melbourne’s west was greened

Urban greening projects in Melbourne’s west are contributing to making the region cooler, more pleasant and healthier to live in and travel through. The key to this success is the Greening the West initiative.

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